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Newbie, while on a college meal plan. Any suggestions/help?

Answered on January 07, 2014
Created October 29, 2013 at 3:51 PM

Hi all! New here to paleo hacks, so give me a break if something like this question has already been on here.. BUT I hve been researching the paleo diet for about a year and have finally taken the plugs after a gradual introduction to the diet.

I am 19 years old and a college student. About 8 months ago I was diagnosed with hashimoto's disease, an auto-immune thyroid disorder, so I started eating gluten free to support this, and about a month ago I was diagnosed with a dairy intolerance. And I thought eating just gluten free on campus was hard! Well it's even harder with dairy free food AND being on a meal plan.

My naturopathic doctor finally told me I should eat paleo. That was the motivation I needed to finally jump into the paleo diet, full swing.

So I guess my question to you is if any other college students (or anyone) has any advice for eating on campus. I go to UVM and we have a grass fed restaurant on campus.. But I also find that my only options are really salads, rarely a soup, etc.

I'm worried I'm not getting enough fats in my diet too, main fat sources are nuts, nut butters, and olive oil as dressing.

I'm doing a variety of Muay Thai/boxing classes so I am also worried I am not getting enough protein.

Any suggestions?

Thanks :)

Medium avatar

on October 30, 2013
at 02:20 AM

Yes thanks for that.. I'm not one if "your kids" and I have contacted that service.. I've talked tomall the people I need to to accommodate my diet.. But like I said, I was worried about the nutritional standpoint, and wanted suggestions as to foods, not who to contact at my school haha but thankyou!

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7 Answers

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Medium avatar

on January 07, 2014
at 08:15 PM

Oh, Hey! I'm a college student too and am pretty paleo except some rice...which doesn't even do me any justice when I eat it...I just eat it cause i'm poor and it's brown rice and not as bad as other things. I really am not even eating it much at all these days, cause it's just so pointless and not even nice tasting. But so many better nutritious things to eat! I just got a nutrabullet, and make green smoothies daily, twice sometimes 3 times a day and these fill me up actually. I ordered grass fred beef from a local farm which I eat when I feel like, I'll get some protien daily. I dont eat campus meat cause i'm sure it's injected with hormones or something and it just doesn't even taste good and good have a lot of milk or just bad stuff in it. I feel better not eating it. I might eat some tuna. I really try not to consume many nuts to throw off my omega balance. If I do have some nuts, i'm usually eating a lot of fish, but even eating too many nuts makes you feel bad. I think some nut butter in a green smoothie is a good balance. But anything you can consume in excess that's bad for you, I made my own limit to protect myself. I won't have more than a tablespoon of nuts or nut butter a day, cause I would eat a whole damn jar, just cause I loved to snack.

I put coconut and coconut oil on everything! I ferment my own fruit juice with water kefir grains, and probiotic pills..just drop em in, put it in a glass bottle and taste it waiting for it to ferment.

I buy kim chi and veggies from the local asian markets

And I will go to whole foods once a month to buy liver and meats and coconut milk kefir.

I have been healing my body and acne for years and avoid dairy like the plague...except for some fermented butter cod liver oil...which I'm not sure if it affects me...but no cheeses, raw milks, nothing with excess hormones for a baby cow.

I would get your vitamin D level checked, get your greens, smoothies are convenient with coconut milk. I had to up my vitamin A, D, and vitamin K2 to get my skin not a pimply mess like it used to be and to fix my body, heal, and get my immune system going.

I put coconut oil on everything and cook with it! Good source of fat! Tuna without icky soy! And I take krill oil.

Gluten is just evil, even if you can consume it...once in a while is fine...but why do that? It's like smoking a cig every now and then...why even bother...better off without it.

and honestly in college I had been a bit lazy but not really, it's tough to cook, cause you have to plan it and my fridge isn't always stalked with cooking stuff, that's why I cook on weekends or will bulk cook and freeze. I also dont have many pots and pans. I have a rice cooker, which I make soups in.

It's totally possible to beat the system, save money, be healthy, and say F you poopy college food!

If you ever have any other question tolondontoparis@aol.com

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Ba02fb04ee8e7744ca35a01fffde3522

on January 07, 2014
at 07:50 PM

Oh, and another cheat: You know that garden by the Davis Center driveway? Out front of Jeffords? During the growing season, it's pretty easy to sneak off with some small items. Yes, it's unethical, but will they really miss a few leaves of basil or dill, or that one pepper that has gotten overripe? Not that I'm confessing to having done anything of the sort, but when you're walking back from the Marche on the way to Trinity or Central after dark...

There are peppers, kale, tomatoes, squash, eggplant, rhubarb, a variety of herbs, and much, much more.

If that causes a moral dilemma, or during the winter you can try potted plants and a grow light in your dorm room. Without the grow light, they'll live, but won't produce any fruit.

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Ba02fb04ee8e7744ca35a01fffde3522

on January 07, 2014
at 07:43 PM

I also go to UVM, and I can sympathize, especially if you're a first year or on one of the unlimited plans. I'm not really paleo, but leaning towards it, and eating well even on points is hard. One of the few tricks I've found is that the Marche and sometimes Redstone market or the Davis Center will have vegetables in snack size that I just go and buy like a bunch of little containers- It's expensive, but doable. They have carrots all the time, which are good both cooked and raw. They make a very sweet broth. You can also find celery, broccoli, the occasional tomato (or cherry tomatoes), as well as tubs of spinach. Once in a while, you can find citrus fruits or sweet potatoes. There are always apples and other whole fruits in the Davis Center, and eggs at the Marche and sometimes Redstone; Though, be careful to crack them into a little bowl first because sometimes they have blood in them. You need to be an opportunist, because their stock changes or runs out regularly. I find it easiest to take a trip over to the Marche when I need a study break or when I'm already on Athletic. Also, take advantage of the free fruits you can take with you out of the dining halls. Have your friends bring back extra for you, too. This is so bad, but on the rare occasion when I do set foot in the dining halls, I don't eat all day and then stuff myself, or I go in the morning with my textbooks and computer and stay for two meals. That's best done on weekends or during finals week, as long as you can focus with all the noise.

You probably have access to a kitchen, but if you don't, they're all over. Find a friend who has one, borrow it to make some easy meals, then take them home to microwave later. I find that it's easiest for me to grab a whole fruit or something else with no prep involved for breakfast, soup or salad between classes for lunch, and save the cooking for dinnertime when I need to wind down. Soup has been my staple food at school because a) It's really easy to make while doing problem sets and b) It's great for when you're cold, sick, or dehydrated.

My savior this semester has been coupons. There are usually good ones for hygiene and household products, which can help free up money for quality food. I've also found decent coupons on occasion for things like nuts and nut butters, chicken stock, and brand-name prepackaged meats and produce. As well, the circulars will tell you what produce is on sale and where, and sometimes you can double up manufacturer's coupons with sales. Not that you should go to every grocery store there is, but if you can find time to go by just one where you know the prices are good, it's worth it. There is like, zero possibility of finding trustworthy meat and fish from Sodexo, so you'll probably need to buy it off campus or get it as a premade meal or in the dining hall.

I hope this helps!

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Fa51f2da1ed61c1177813672b07fe7a5

(20)

on October 30, 2013
at 03:18 AM

I'd say eggs should be a good option for you...healthy fats, good nutrients like biotin and protein to help with muscle recovery after your boxing. I'm sure your dining hall has some scrambled or hardboiled eggs in the morning, and likely again at lunch/dinner at the salad bar

If they've got avocado at the salad bar, that's another good option for a fat. Nuts aren't bad, as long as they're not the only thing you're eating for fat and you're not just having one kind. Maybe keep a jar of almond/sunflower butter and coconut oil in your room as a snack food for when you're hungry (as a 19 year old male, I doubt calorie restriction is a concern). EIther eat on a spoon (if that's up your alley) or spread on a banana or microwaved sweet potato. Just buy a big bag and keep them in a brown paper bag in your room. Poke with a fork all over and nuke for 2-4 minutes, turning over every 40 seconds or so. Delicious when spread with coconut oil and cinnamon!

What are your other concerns with regard to the dining halls? What are you having for breakfast, lunch and dinner? You say you're stuck primarily with salads...what kind of protein options do they have for the salads? Can you mix and match the hot and cold foods a bit more (i.e. if they've only got sliced ham and chicken breast out with the salads, why not grab some pork, salmon or shrimp from the hot foods section to add to the salad? Or some salami from the sandwich station?). It's hard to know what to suggest when we don't know what the actually have to offer

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Medium avatar

(238)

on October 29, 2013
at 05:31 PM

You are in college and as such I shouldn't have to do your work for you - are you one of my kids by chance?

ALTERNATIVE DIETARY NEEDS

At University Dining Services we understand that there are students with alternative dietary needs. UDS offers a wide variety of foods and resources available to assist students in making menu selections and designing a dining plan that works for you.

For those students with allergies, ethnic or religious observance, intolerances, or other needs please feel free to contact any of our Dining Service Managers, University Dining Services Main Office at 802.656.4664 or our Registered Dietitian, Kathryn Lawsonthrough at at 802.656.3566 or through our Main Office at 802.656.4664.

Please feel free to contact Kathryn Lawson, R.D. to discuss your needs.

Medium avatar

on October 30, 2013
at 02:20 AM

Yes thanks for that.. I'm not one if "your kids" and I have contacted that service.. I've talked tomall the people I need to to accommodate my diet.. But like I said, I was worried about the nutritional standpoint, and wanted suggestions as to foods, not who to contact at my school haha but thankyou!

0
7904c7276d7e48f1be887fabd263bfd9

(300)

on October 29, 2013
at 04:18 PM

maybe find out who to talk to and attempt to get out of your meal plan,due ofcourse to serious medical issues.

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