Being at university is an exciting time, but it can also be a time of change. If you have left home, you will have more independence over your food choices, and have a limited food budget. As a student it may be challenging to eat a healthy diet that gives you all the right nutrients and energy you need without running down your student loan.

Healthy students are better learners. Research shows that eating habits and healthy behaviours are connected to academic achievement. Studies report that increase in alcohol and sugar intake and lower fruit and vegetable consumption in university students.

Yet what we eat and drink can have an impact on our bodies and minds in countless ways. It can also influence our environment and climate change. What’s more, it’s a skill for life and what makes a university a great place to learn how to do it. Taking the time to eat well and having a basic knowledge of how to eat in a budget-friendly and coinvent way that is healthy for you and more sustainable for our planet will help you get the most out of university experience. It can help you create healthy habits.

Having a healthy, balanced diet helps make sure that our bodies get all the nutrients needed to work well from day to day and can also reduce the risk of diseases such as cancer, heart diseases, stroke and diabetes. Healthy eating isn’t about eating less sugar, salt and saturated fats but also about what we should be eating more of, for example more fruit, vegetables and fibre. Everyone is different there is no magic diet or the need for all or nothing approaches. Rather the principles of healthy eating and a varied and a balanced diet can be adapted to suit you.

Try and shop smart and you can make your money go a lot further. Some tips here may help you make the right decisions.

  • Make a shopping list and stick to it!

Budgeting is a big way of student’s life. Planning your meals ahead can help you over spending.

  • Try the supermarkets own brands.

These products will normally be cheaper than branded items.

  • Bulk meals with beans, pulses and vegetables. It can help your meals go a lot further.
  • Shop around

Some goods may be cheaper at local sellers like the butchers or the market.

  • Frozen fruit and vegetables can be cheaper than fresh and it can save you money.
  • Batch cook as then you always have a meal for another day.
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