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What is your best Stay Healthy/ Young/ Don't get Fat Grad/Student tip?


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So many people get fat and unhealthy in grad school.  Including me about a year ago. Then I joined the Biggest Loser... no, I didn't. That's  a lie. ;)   I did have to lose a bunch of weight, however, the natural way.  So for me, my top 3 stay healthy/young/don't get fat student tips: 

 

1) Yoga 

2) ZenPhones and ZenTones   ( These SAVED me and my GPA. Especially the ZenPhones which helped me tolerate horrible, loud roommates....)

 

3) Facebook --- ( For entertainment purposes, but not too much. This can be a thief of time!) 

 

4. Going gluten-free. ( I don't care what anyone says. I looked pregnant until I started cutting out gluten.)

 

Yours??? 

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1. I have a sweet tooth and binge on whatever is sweet in the house. So I've made a rule that I can have any treat I want, but I have to go to the store and get one single serving of it. One slice, on

just different opinions. I happen to side with those who think that obesity is a real problem, and ignorance is not bliss.

(I find it crazy that I got "minus one" for that!!  )

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1. I basically started scheduling items more rigorously so that I wasn't overly stressed about due dates and what not.

 

2. Cut out one hr of TV/netflix and go workout (nothing too serious, but it helps)

 

3. Made some time to just relax (go for a walk or just think, etc)

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I put on SO much weight during my MS. It was all pizza, beer, chinese food, and leftover cookies from department meetings for two years. 

 

I'm determined, this time around, not to festishize the pursuit of scholarship above getting some exercise and watching my sugar intake. 

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unless you have Celiac disease, there is no reason to eliminate gluten. Most people do better on a "gluten free" diet because they are no longer consuming processed foods and lots of sugar. Whole grains (that naturally contain gluten) are healthy, and important sources of vitamins and minerals, as well as fibre. Most people who get rid of gluten would do better to eliminate sugar and processed foods, while keeping healthy whole grains (steel cut oats, quinoa, stone ground whole wheat bread, etc.) as part of their diet. We actually see a scary number of deficiencies among those who have gone gluten free without having a Celiac diagnosis. Also, most of those those who claim to be "sensitive" to gluten are actually sensitive to FODMAPs, not gluten.

My tips: eat healthy, which means local, unprocessed foods, as much as possible. Minimize sugar and caffeine. Exercise 5 days/week, at least 30 min each time, for a cumulative 150 min, or more, each week. Get plenty of sleep. Don't pull all nighters. Stay hydrated. If in Northern areas, or if you always wear sunscreen, or cover up when outdoors, take vitamin D.

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On 3/19/2015 at 7:20 PM, victorydance said:

This is nothing inherently unhealthy about Chinese food. It really depends on what you are choosing.

Crab rangoons and chicken lo mein probably aren't the best of choices.. But soooo good. The grilled chicken and broccoli combo probably would've been a smarter decision.

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unless you have Celiac disease, there is no reason to eliminate gluten. Most people do better on a "gluten free" diet because they are no longer consuming processed foods and lots of sugar. Whole grains (that naturally contain gluten) are healthy, and important sources of vitamins and minerals, as well as fibre. Most people who get rid of gluten would do better to eliminate sugar and processed foods, while keeping healthy whole grains (steel cut oats, quinoa, stone ground whole wheat bread, etc.) as part of their diet. We actually see a scary number of deficiencies among those who have gone gluten free without having a Celiac diagnosis. Also, most of those those who claim to be "sensitive" to gluten are actually sensitive to FODMAPs, not gluten.

My tips: eat healthy, which means local, unprocessed foods, as much as possible. Minimize sugar and caffeine. Exercise 5 days/week, at least 30 min each time, for a cumulative 150 min, or more, each week. Get plenty of sleep. Don't pull all nighters. Stay hydrated. If in Northern areas, or if you always wear sunscreen, or cover up when outdoors, take vitamin D.

I just looked up FODMAPs (digestive issues here) and it seems like most of the diets are mostly gluten free? So it's basically the same thing? (I'm genuinely curious)

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I was never really skinny to begin with. At my lowest adult weight, I was 190 pounds and a size 14 (in my senior year of high school). At that point in my life, I ate a fair amount of junk food (chips, cookies, etc), but didn't eat out at McDonalds or Chinese places very much. I also had a somewhat active job as a stock girl 3 nights a week and took karate classes 3 times a week (amounted to 5 hours each week). Plus I practiced at home frequently. I can honestly say that I was pretty fit, even though I still had some flab.

 

When I went to college, all of that changed. No more time for karate classes and I got a full-time job at a fast food place near school. I gained about 40 pounds in my first two years. I eventually went on to gain a lot more (I was over 300 at one point), then went low carb and started working out and lost a lot of it. I managed to hold a steady weight until I finally graduated with my BS by 1) working full-time as a waitress (I did a lot of walking!), 2) trying to eat healthy, and 3) being active as much as I could but not actually working out.

 

Then I went for my MS and I basically spent my first 3 semesters sitting in a chair. Between studying, reading papers, sitting in class, and the long commute to school, I did an obscene amount of sitting. It also didn't help that I would spend a lot of my free time binge watching Star Trek and other SciFi shows on Netflix. I also ate a lot of fast food because it was easy. I got so fat. The summer helped, because I was outside collecting data for my thesis, and I trimmed down a little bit, but once the semester started again I puffed up. 

 

So I have a lot of weight to lose right now, and I really need to get in shape for the summer for a job that will involve a lot of walking around the woods doing some habitat sampling, particularly in muddy places. Plus I'm sick of being fat and lazy. I've made a few lifestyle changes and they are working well for me:

 

1. Exercise! I try to do cardio 6 days per week, about 40-45 minutes per day. Basically, I watch an episode of a show on Netflix while I walk on the treadmill or cycle. A tip for anyone like me who can't run because it hurts your shins and other body parts - adjust the incline on the treadmill to a high number. You will get a great cardio workout walking at a slower pace. I also have an old Total Gym that I use 3 days per week. I just do a few sets of some basic exercises. I probably spend 20 minutes on the machine.

 

2. Just say no to fast food. I was eating so much McDonalds, Burger King, Pizza, Chinese takeout (and not the healthy kind), etc. before. Even though it takes a little planning, I pack a lunch and I cook at home. Crock pots are also awesome for having a meal ready when you get home from a long day. I really like Thai and Indian food, and I found a great cookbook full of crock pot versions of dishes. I also found that rice is really filling for me (and better for me than potatoes and bread), so I invested in a good rice cooker with a delay timer to make it easier to make. Anytime that I do find myself without a lunch at school, I just grab a sandwich someplace. No fries, chips, etc. 

 

3. No late night snacking on junk. I am really guilty of kicking back at the end of the day, watching tv, and eating a bag of chips. This requires a bit of will power, but once 8:00 rolls around, if I want to eat something, I eat yogurt, fruit, veggies with a little ranch, etc. Something healthier than junk food. It's easy to eat 500 calories of chips in a sitting. It's not so easy to do that with yogurt or fruit (although possible).

 

4. Drink more water. I love soda. Sometime when I was a teenager, I started drinking soda like crazy. It's part of the reason I got so fat during college. Free Dr. Pepper at work? Sure, I'll drink like 100 ounces every shift. I was actually drinking over 1000 calories every time I worked (which was 5 days a week) on top of all the calorie-rich food I was eating. At some point while waitressing, I started cutting it with diet soda, which helped. However, now I strive to drink mostly water and only have one can of soda each day (and it's diet). I also try to drink a lot of water, too.

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i'm definitely addicted to soda. one thing that ive started doing was just drink club soda to get the carbonation. i went from drinking like 1-2 cans of soda a day to none. i've also been trying to eat more veggies and less carbs (i just crave carbs all the time)

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I lost 30 lbs in my masters... at the beginning I was so stressed I was only eating one meal a day, usually just a sandwich.  I'm larger than most people and I needed to loose some weight, so it didn't hurt.  But I realized that that was unhealthy, and started to calorie count.
This time around I think I'm going to try to maybe do yoga at the rec center.  And eat steamed veggies and quinoa for most meals, because it's easy to make, healthy, and cheap.

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I spent so much of my life trying to force myself to eat tiny amounts of super healthy food, while occasionally doing little baby aerobics work outs. It sucked. I never had enough willpower to reduce my calorie intake enough to maintain my weight, and I was extremely weak and stressed.

Now I do intense workouts a few times a week and let myself eat whatever I want. I feel great, I'm the strongest I've been in years, and I've been dropping pounds steadily.

I do strength workouts with weights now, instead of just using my body weight, and oh my god what a difference it's made in my muscle composition. I like to lift in my room in my pajamas watching TV, so it's easy to make time for it.

I also try to bike as much as possible. Since it's just a mode of transportation, it doesn't really feel like exercise, and it's made my legs SO strong.

The last thing I do is the hardest one. I'm training for a thru-hike, so I put bags of cat litter in a backpack and walk up and down the stairs in my house for about an hour. I listen to music to keep my mind off the task. It's rough, but after only three times of doing it spread out over a week or two, I noticed a visible change in my legs. Crazy.

Basically the moral of the story is I am so much happier doing intense workouts, being strong, and getting to eat whenever I want, instead of trying to force myself to look and act like some frail wispy fashion model.

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2. Just say no to fast food. I was eating so much McDonalds, Burger King, Pizza, Chinese takeout (and not the healthy kind), etc. before. Even though it takes a little planning, I pack a lunch and I cook at home. Crock pots are also awesome for having a meal ready when you get home from a long day. I really like Thai and Indian food, and I found a great cookbook full of crock pot versions of dishes. I also found that rice is really filling for me (and better for me than potatoes and bread), so I invested in a good rice cooker with a delay timer to make it easier to make. Anytime that I do find myself without a lunch at school, I just grab a sandwich someplace. No fries, chips, etc. 

 

 

 

 

Hey Shadowclaw - want to pass along the crock recipe books for Indian and Thai food?

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I just looked up FODMAPs (digestive issues here) and it seems like most of the diets are mostly gluten free? So it's basically the same thing? (I'm genuinely curious)

They aren't the same at all. Gluten is found in barley and wheat. FODMAPs are found in a variety of foods, including some that are gluten-free, like several fruits (apples, pears for instance), some vegetables (Ex, broccoli, asparagus), some legumes (ex, kidney beans, chickpeas), some dairy, etc.

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4. Drink more water. I love soda. Sometime when I was a teenager, I started drinking soda like crazy. It's part of the reason I got so fat during college. Free Dr. Pepper at work? Sure, I'll drink like 100 ounces every shift. I was actually drinking over 1000 calories every time I worked (which was 5 days a week) on top of all the calorie-rich food I was eating. At some point while waitressing, I started cutting it with diet soda, which helped. However, now I strive to drink mostly water and only have one can of soda each day (and it's diet). I also try to drink a lot of water, too.

 

This. Replacing all of those sugary, delicious drinks (looking at you Starbucks, soda, etc.) with just water is a really healthy choice and pretty easy to make.

 

A couple of small decisions that you can make can also make a difference such as: trying to always take the stairs when possible (instead of escalators, elevators), spending that extra 20 minutes to walk to places around your house instead of driving, etc. can really make a difference as well.

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1) I do martial arts (Taekwondo) for 90 minutes three times a week. It really helps me to de-stress and get out all of my pent-up energy after sitting still most of the day. 

 

2) I drink lots of water, several liters per day, and the only other thing I drink is tea (mostly herbal or green).

 

3) I walk to and from campus (and everywhere else, except to the grocery store when I need to take the bus because groceries are heavy!) at least 5 days per week.

 

4) I don't drink any caffeine, do drugs, or smoke, and I never buy any sweets, candy, cake, or chocolate (I only eat it at parties or events). I do drink alcohol, but I try to keep consumption moderate.

 

5) I'm vegetarian and don't eat any prepackaged, processed foods (I only go out to dinner at good quality restaurants with local produce, and I usually cook dinner at home).

 

6) I don't eat late at night, and I don't eat any fast food at all.

 

7) I get a LOT of sleep - at least 8 hours per night, more like 9 if I'm really tired. I usually go to bed around 11 and wake up at 7 or 8.

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Hey Shadowclaw - want to pass along the crock recipe books for Indian and Thai food?

 So I wasn't the one asked, but have a few crock Indian recipes.  I actually chuck them in there the night before, pop the crock in the fridge overnight, and then put it on in the morning.  I don't care for Thai much, so can't help on that score!  (I don't like coconut which pretty much kills Thai.)  On all these I disregard the directions other than ingredients (I do play with those as well) and just chuck it all in raw.  I DO however freeze tofu as soon as I buy it and defrost it as needed.  It really does alter the texture quite a lot.

 

http://www.yummly.com/recipe/external/Tofu-Keema-Allrecipes 

 

http://www.budgetbytes.com/2013/12/curried-chickpeas-spinach/

 

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/potato-pea-curry-recipe0.html

 

Not Indian, but pretty cheap, easy and a hit with my whole family which includes several carnivores....

 

http://www.veganmotherhubbard.com/2013/04/crock-pot-tofu-and-veggies.html I don't use mushrooms as I'm allergic and sub in whatever I have handy.

 

Hope someone enjoys at least one of them!

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Hey Shadowclaw - want to pass along the crock recipe books for Indian and Thai food?

http://www.amazon.com/Best-Indian-Vietnamese-Cooker-Recipes/dp/0778804046/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1426892217&sr=8-1

http://www.amazon.com/The-New-Indian-Slow-Cooker/dp/1607746190/ref=pd_sim_b_2?ie=UTF8&refRID=13VBYBRBJJCWG751V3F9

The first one has a nice mix of different cuisines and is the only cookbook I could find with Thai crockpot recipes. The second one is has only Indian recipes, but I like that it has extra non-crockpot recipes as well.

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They aren't the same at all. Gluten is found in barley and wheat. FODMAPs are found in a variety of foods, including some that are gluten-free, like several fruits (apples, pears for instance), some vegetables (Ex, broccoli, asparagus), some legumes (ex, kidney beans, chickpeas), some dairy, etc.

So it's a gluten free diet and then some? Sorry I'm in naive- when I looked online it looked like gluten was a FODMAP.

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So it's a gluten free diet and then some? Sorry I'm in naive- when I looked online it looked like gluten was a FODMAP.

Not quite. Wheat has fructans in it, and some people who are sensitive to FODMAPs can't have fructans, but others can have them, or they can have them in small amounts. Whereas someone with Celiac disease can't have any gluten. So someone on a FODMAP diet may be fine with whole wheat products, but needs to stay away from certain fruits, vegetables and beans. So it may not be gluten free at all.

We generally have patients with IBS keep a food and symptom diary, so they can figure out what foods they are sensitive to. Some are just fine with gluten. There's nothing inherently bad about gluten, unless you have Celiac disease. Those who are sensitive to fructans may want to avoid wheat, but not because of the gluten (so gluten free foods may not help them at all).

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I just bought a Bento box so I can keep portion sizes under control. Though I'm pretty skinny right now, I'd like to stay that way.

Plus they have some pretty designs~

 

I should get a small crockpot. I have the darndest time getting up in the morning (especially during the winter months) so if I prepare something at night, put it in the crockpot, the next morning it should be ready for a lunch?

 

I personally drink milk, fruit juices, and loose-leaf tea (rarely soda). The loose-leaf teas are the best (I usually get the stuff from Teavana, but I know there are other places to get good loose-leaf). I already have an electric kettle (with different temperature settings!), and I highly recommend it if you drink hot tea.

 

I want to find a relatively cheap place to do yoga (and I'll figure that out when I move to Toronto). Otherwise my yoga instructor from home had some ideas about doing yoga at home.

Highly aerobic exercise stresses me out more than it should, but I'd like to at least walk to campus in good weather.

 

I'd like to become a pescatarian when I go off to graduate school (I would do it sooner, but I have to break the habit every time I go home from university...). I don't trust myself cooking anything but seafood for whatever reason.

 

Just some random thoughts to consider.

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