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WellnessWednesday

Health Other

College Campus Vegan Survival Guide

April 17, 2019

During the fall of 2011, GradGuard’s Director of Customer Experience made the trek from Phoenix to Colorado State University for her freshman year of college. Upon crossing the state line, she decided to slowly adopt a vegan lifestyle.

Like most college students, she embraced the opportunity to express her newfound individuality and values. She had her own fridge, a small student budget, and a newfound desire for sustainability. Little did she know that her creative tricks to ‘veganize’ comfort food would one day land a selfie of her and her grandma in The Wall Street Journal.

The other day, while she was munching on carrots and vegan ranch, we asked her what advice she would give to incoming vegan freshmen on a budget. We expected a simple response and instead received the following detailed guide. Whether you’re vegan, plant-based, vegetarian, or just plain healthy; check out this guide and true tricks for cooking on college campuses.

College Campus Vegan Survival Guide

Surviving In the Dorm Room

Living on campus can be daunting without a kitchen, especially if you’re a foodie. Learning how to cook creatively in the dorm can feel a lot like being a contestant on Chopped. These items made cooking in the dorms not only fun and challenging but healthy!

The Basics The Extras
Mini-fridge
-Microwave
-Electric kettle*
-Utensils Slow-cooker*
-Rice maker*
-Glass containers
-16oz mason jars
-Cutting board with knife*  
-An herb garden
-A fungi-growing kit
-Sprouting jar and lids
-Cheesecloth
-Espresso maker*
-Cold-brew coffee maker
-A homemade kombucha kit  

*Please make sure to check with your residence hall’s rules and regulations regarding these items

Mini-Fridge Staples Shelf-Stable Staples
-Crudités
-Vegan ranch or mayo
-Hummus
-Seasonal fruits
-Frozen burritos
-Frozen vegetables in steam bags
-Beans
-Nuts and nut butters
-Plant-based milk
-Soup
-PastaSauce
-Microwavable rice and pasta

Surviving In the Dining Halls

Over 70% of college campuses are now providing vegan options in the dining halls. Most schools post a weekly menu for each dining hall complete with nutritional information. If you can’t easily find one online, reach out to your university. If your particular college is more vegetarian-friendly, it helps to sneak in your own cheese or condiments.

If you’re on a limited meal plan, it is easiest to skip the bacon and egg-laden breakfast most schools provide and stick to a quick protein bar or shake. Make sure to plan out your meals for the week if you have a limited number of dining hall passes. This way, you can create a short grocery list for the meals you know you’ll need to make.

Overall, being vegan on campus will take a lot of trial and error until you standardize your weekly routine. GradGuard is always here to help you with tips on wellness and college hacks. Here are a few vegan food bloggers’ guides that made being vegan in college look like a breeze:

Emilie Eats’ College Vegan Guide
Graduate of Louisiana State University & Current Colorado State Grad Student

Jordan Waddel’s Easy Packed Cold Lunches for Work or School
Current Nursing student

From My Bowl’s Easy 3-Ingredient After School Snacks
Graduate of the University of Pittsburg

Bon appétit!

Health Other

Where to Go When You’re Sick in College

January 23, 2019

Since we are stuck in the middle of flu season there is a good chance that you could still get sick. If you can prevent that, you’ll be golden! However, it can be difficult to not get sick especially if you’re living in the residence halls. Being sick in college is, for me, one of the worst things ever. Not being at home with some family-made chicken soup and having someone take care of you is hard. This is especially hard if this is your first time away from home. Since you probably don’t have that comfort of being at home, you have to find it at school. Here are some tips on where to go when you’re sick.

Residence Halls

Being in the residence halls can be pretty hard if you’re trying to avoid getting sick. This is because you’re in close quarters and share the same hallways, elevators/stairs, and even bathrooms. Germs are everywhere. All residents should take care to wash your hands as much as possible, and if you’re sick you should try and stay in your room. You should also notify your teachers if you’re too sick to make it to class. Trust me, your teacher will appreciate you not showing up to class if that means that you’re preventing them from catching whatever you have. Make sure to figure out if you’ll need a doctors note to show proof of your absence.

The most important thing is to stay in bed and get the rest you need to get better. If you’re quite sick this can be difficult. Reach out to your friends, roommate or RA for help if you need it – they may be able to pick up some cough medicine, soup or whatever else you need on the way back from class. You don’t have to suffer through your cold alone!

Health Center

This is especially important. If you’re sick and think that you’re not going to get better anytime soon, go to the health center. The health centers are there for you for a reason; to help you get better! There are various doctors for different types of services that are trained for this exact reason. Make an appointment ASAP and get the help that you need. Don’t put it off until you get worse because your recovery time could be longer than you think, and appointments fill up – especially during flu season! If your recovery time is long, then you could potentially get behind in class and no one wants that.

Hospital or Urgent Care

Unfortunately, health centers at school aren’t open 24/7. Sometimes when you’re sick it gets to its worst point in the late night or early morning, or maybe over the weekend. Since the health center isn’t an option at those times, you should go to the hospital or urgent care. This, of course, is if you can’t wait until the health center is open. Some illnesses are worse than others and need the proper care that it deserves.

Going Home

This is obviously worst case scenario. If you are too sick to attend class, leave your bed, eat, or any other symptom, and it’s an option, you should try and go home. If your hometown is very far away, then this, unfortunately, might not be an option for you. However, if you are close enough to go home, this might be just what you need to make sure that you recover quickly and don’t get anyone at school sick.

If you’re sick in college, make sure that you know what all of your options are. Becoming healthy again is your main priority to having a successful school year and GradGuard is here to give you the tips on how to do it!

Health Other

5 Ways to Stay Mentally Healthy During Finals Week

December 12, 2018

Exam period is stressful for every student, regardless of how great your grades are. Some students stress out way too much and it eventually affects their mental health. If you do not want to get into the same situation – check out our advice on how to stay mentally healthy during your finals week below.

Stay organized

Most students, especially not the most successful ones, start panicking before their finals. This often is resulted in them nervously jumping from one subject to another, trying to learn the semester’s material in one week. Let’s be realistic here, that is not going to happen. There is something you could do though. Set yourself a strict schedule and follow it. It is better to learn half of the material but with the full effort put into it, than to know random facts that most likely will not save you during the exam.

Get enough sleep

It is crucial that you get plenty of sleep, especially during those stressful weeks of exams. A good night’s sleep reduces your stress level and makes you memorize things quicker. Make sure you include at least 8 hours of sleep into your daily schedule.

Positive attitude

How often do you hear teenagers say something like ‘if I fail this exam my life is over’? Well, the thing is that the more you think like this, the bigger is the chance that you actually might fail. Do not put unnecessary psychological tension on yourself, exams are not the end of the world. Do your study, be positive and relax during the examination process – you will remember things much easier this way. Remember when Ron Weasley won the match because he thought he drank the magical portion? That is the same trick here. Positive thinking.

Exercise

Recent research shows that exercising does not only make wonders to your body, but to your mind as well. By including short workout breaks into your schedule, you will greatly reduce your stress level and anxiety. Therefore, you will study more productively. And that is the aim here, right?

Eat well

If you are on a diet – exam week is the perfect time to end it. This is the time that your body will most likely be in a lot of stress. In this case, you will need as much ‘body fuel’ as you can get. But that does not mean that you have to stuff yourself with soda and junk food. Eat healthily but do not limit yourself too much. You can even eat cake once in a while – your brain sure does need sugar.

So these are the basic 5 rules for you to follow during your exam week. If you do not neglect these, your success rate will go up during this stressful week. GradGuard is there for you during finals week and wishes you luck where you need it the most!

BIO
Daniela McVicker has been writing as a hobby for quite a while. Over the past couple of years, she has been a successful contributor to various websites. Now she is working as a writer and editor at Topwritersreview.