Healthy Eating in College - Nemours Blog


Healthy Eating in College

young men showcasing healthy eating in college

College is such an exciting time in a young person’s life. For many, it marks a new beginning and an age of independence students probably haven’t experienced before, especially if they move away from home and choose to live on campus. Suddenly your “baby” is solely responsible for waking up on time for class, doing laundry, and – maybe for the first time – making healthy food choices.

Navigating the kitchen at home may be an easier task than navigating one of the many all-you-can-eat dining halls on campus. But fear not! It isn’t impossible to maintain a healthy lifestyle during the college years. Share the following tips with your teen to help with healthy eating in college.

Stock up the mini-fridge.

Healthy eating in college starts in the dorm room. Having nutritious food choices on hand is a must. Keeping things in a mini-fridge is always a good idea. This will keep the food chilled and the fridges are the perfect size to fit in your room. If you don’t have a mini-fridge, you could consider visiting to try and find one of the best ones. So load up the mini-fridge and dorm room with the following foods:


Any and all fresh vegetables will do, especially ones that are convenient and ready to eat like baby carrots, celery, and broccoli. We all know the importance of eating our greens, but the easiest way to consume them is through a juice. If you are wondering what the best juicer is then you should go to


Choose fresh fruits or, for longer shelf life, fruits packaged in water (not syrup).

Low-fat dairy products

No mini-fridge should be without dairy! Load it up with Greek yogurt, milk, and string cheese.

Whole grains

Whole-wheat crackers, whole-grain cereal, whole-wheat bread, and granola bars offer great variety and satisfying crunch to snacking.

Dips and spreads

Hummus, salsa, and natural nut butters paired with the whole grains mentioned above make for a healthy, satisfying snack.

Vitamins and supplements

You might be eating all of your fruit and veg, but sometimes it can be a good idea to top yourself up on supplements. This will help to stop you from feeling tired in lectures and will give you more energy for studying (and partying!). Vitamin C chewables and CBD gummies UK work well if you struggle swallowing pills, and they come in many flavours so they taste good too!

Make smart choices at the dining hall.

  • Watch portion sizes and the urge to go back for seconds. Avoid the pull of the fried foods and pizza stations. Instead, fill your plate with fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain options. Many universities in the UK, however, do not have dining halls. Students instead have to shop for their food and cook it themselves in their flat which can make eating healthily on a tight budget almost impossible. Luckily, many city restaurants and cafes are now on the Too Good to Go app, which allows people to buy leftover ready-cooked food at a vastly reduced price, or even free, making healthy food much easier to get hold of! This Ultimate Guide to Too Good to Go UK is useful if your teen is thinking of flying off to a uni in the UK – student life can be very different abroad!

Stay active on campus.

  • Walk to class rather than taking the shuttle.
  • Join recreational sports teams on campus. This helps college students stay active and meet new people.
  • Visit the fitness center on campus and utilize the equipment or classes offered.

As a parent, you can expect that your child will – and should – indulge in the occasional late-night treat or pizza delivery with friends. But you can balance this by providing the tools and knowledge to help them make healthy eating and lifestyle choices in college that will ultimately set them up for a bright and healthy future on their own.

Learn More

Healthy Dining Hall Eating (Nemours‘
Go, Slow, and Whoa!: A Quick Guide to Healthy Eating (Nemours’
Smart Snacking (Nemours’

Lauren O'Hara, RD, LDN

Lauren is a registered dietitian at Nemours Children's Hospital in Wilmington, Del.