As I was walking behind two freshmen the other day, I couldn’t help but overhear their conversation about gaining the freshman fifteen. That got me to start thinking about why we gain weight our freshman year of college compared to every other year of school we have ever done.
You always hear parents saying that you gain the weight because you don’t have home cooked meals, but could that actually be the reason why? There is always an ample amount of quick fast food to pick up when you are late to class, but that could be the main cause of the weight gain. According to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, most people do not know how much calories are in the fast food products they eat. Most of these products are fried or use preservatives, which is very unhealthy for humans. This fact could help explain a lot about the sudden weight gain of freshman, since we know your body can only burn off so many calories before they start to turn to fat.
There was another fact that shocked me when I was reading this website abut how to beat the freshman fifteen, do not skip breakfast. The spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, said that skipping breakfast affects our metabolism and will make us eat more during the day compared to if you ate breakfast. I found this shocking because I am not a morning person so I am usually not hungry when I wake up and will go to class without eating. After reading that fact though, eating breakfast will become a new routine of my day.
The real killer when it comes to weight gain, in my eyes, is the amount of alcohol you drink. Alcohol is usually forgotten that it is filled with empty calories and carbs. You may not think that one glass of wine will do much to you, but drinking that wine has as much calories as a slice of cake does. Another misconception is that beer has more calories than vodka so students will just drink vodka. A light beer has about 103 calories in while most vodka has about 100 calories in, so there really isn’t much of a difference. There’s also the fact that when you are stumbling home at two in the morning and see food, there is a good chance you will buy some. This leads me back to my first point of eating badly and gaining weight.
Lastly, many students in high school, including myself, played a sport, which gave them exercise almost everyday and kept them in shape. But now coming to college, these students may not be playing a sport and excising which would lead to weight gain, especially if they are eating badly and drinking a lot.
All in all, if you are a freshman and afraid of gaining the famous “freshman fifteen”, then all you really have to do is just watch what you are eating, be careful how much you drink, and exercise when you can. These easy steps could help you defeat the odds of gaining weight.