Some adults think that their college days are the happiest time of their life. While for some, it's true, but the college days can be rough for students.
A survey of more than 150,000 students nationwide conducted by the Cooperative Institutional Research Program at UCLA's Higher Education Research Institute found out that 9.5 percent of respondents always felt discouraged during the previous year. It's a growth over the 6.1 percent which recorded five years ago.
Students are expected to be on top of their game all the time. This is so they won't lose to others in the competition of getting a good job. This kind of expectation makes many students feel anxious all of the time. It makes them do whatever they can to catch up with their overwhelming tasks, even though it often compromises their health.
Most common illness suffered by college students
Besides the factor that we've mentioned above, there are other reasons why college illness is more common than students or parents realize. Some of the factors are the poor sanitation in college dorms, and poor health habits developed.
And here are some common illness suffered by college students:
This disease is prompted by bacterial contamination, which results in inflammation of the membranes covering the brain. To prevent catching this disease, we recommend a meningococcal meningitis vaccination for students who stay in dormitories.
Students often live together and not practice preventive actions when they should. This what makes flu quickly spread among them. Many college health centers have the flu vaccine, and we recommend you to use the facilitation.
Students often use shared facilitations like bathrooms, and they even share foods. This is one of the reasons that norovirus and other foodborne viruses spread easily. They spread from contaminated food and water and from touching contaminated surfaces.
Mononucleosis is a common college illness caused by the Epstein-Barr virus. Symptoms are severe sore throat, fever, and exhaustion.
Giving your best for your college ambition is great, but you need some strategies to maintain your health. Especially if you don't want to get sick and let it ruin your hard works.
Here are 5 PROVEN tips to STAY FIT as a COLLEGE STUDENT:
Get enough sleep
Getting enough sleep is an essential step to stay fit as a college student. Even though you have an abundance of homework, you need to be strict about your sleeping schedule. Because if you're well-rested, then you can do your tasks more effectively and increase your productivity.
Do these things to make sure that you have a good quality sleep:
Reduce blue light exposure in the evening
If you're exposed to bright light in the evening, your brain will think that it's still day time, and it will decrease the hormones needed to feel relaxed and get you to a deep sleep state. So, if you work on your tasks in the evening, you can wear glasses that block blue light or use apps or software to block blue light on your phone or computer.
Don't drink coffee
Limit your coffee intake. Coffee may stimulate your nervous system and prevent you from feeling relaxed at night. If you want to drink it, then do it before 3 PM so it won't affect you by the time you need to get some sleep.
Sleep and wake up at a consistent time
Regular sleep patterns will help your body to get good quality sleep. You should practice this by forcing your body to lay down and close your eyes, even though you're not sleepy yet. Do this for a few days in a row, and you can train your body to feel drowsy and wake up at a consistent time.
Take a relaxing shower before sleeping
Some studies discovered that taking a hot shower before sleeping will help to get a better quality of sleep. Or you can wash your hands and feet with warm water before sleeping, as an alternative.
The next thing you have to improve if you want to stay fit as a college student is your eating patterns.
A healthy eating lifestyle will help you to improve your mood, memory, and sleeping quality. So, it will also help you to achieve your ambitions in college.
Here are some things you should do to have a healthy eating habit:
- Eat a lot of fruits and vegetables
- Eat fish
- Cut down on saturated fats and sugar (from sausages, butter, cakes, pies, etc.)
- Eat breakfast
- Drink a lot of water
Learn to handle the stressors of college life
Feeling the pressure as a college student is normal. But you have to learn to manage them if you want to be productive without neglecting your health.
First, you can identify some everyday stressors in your college life. They usually are an overwhelming task, hard study materials, and exams.
Next, you should try to set some strategies to manage those stressors. Here are some tips for you:
- Pay attention in the class: if you pay attention in class, you don't need to repeat the same materials and can use the excess of your time to do some in-depth study or the materials that are not covered in classes.
- Don't get distracted: your phone is a handy tool for your study, but more often than not, it's also the top distractor. Turn off the phone or set it to airplane mode when you want to study. So, you don't get distracted every time your notification rings.
- Make a study schedule: If you set a schedule and priority list before anything else, you will save yourself a lot of trouble. You'll have a sense of direction and not easily swayed by many things around you that may distract you from achieving your goals.
Build at least a half-hour of physical exercise
Studying is great, but you have to move your body as well in order for your brain to work effectively. So, spare time in between your study session to do some workouts.
Here are some simple workouts you can do in your bedroom:
- Sit-ups: Aim for 20 for a start, and work your way up to 50 once you get used to it
- Crunches: Do it for three sets of 20.
- Bicycles: Rest on your back, feet in the air, and bend your knees. Then put your hands behind your head. Then, start pumping your legs like you're cycling, do it quickly for one minute.
- Jumping Jacks: Make sure to lift your hands over your head each time, and keep it going for at least one minute.
- Squat Jumps: Bend your knees, then tuck your arms like a downhill skier. Jump and straighten your legs in the air before settling in a squat position once again. Do two sets of 10.
- Planks: Lie on your elbows and toes, keep your back and legs in a straight position. Hold it for one minute.
- Push-Ups: Drop and do it 20 times as beginning. You can add later if you need more challenge.
Establish a routine for your daily life
One of the most important things to do to have a healthy lifestyle is establishing a routine.
A routine for your daily life is not dull, as opposed to some people's thinking. A routine for your everyday life is vital if you want to be productive and effective. If you have a routine, you don't need to ponder what you need to do every day because it would waste a lot of time.
Besides that, here are the benefits of having a routine for your daily life:
It will help create structure in life
A daily routine will give structure and a logical sequence in your lives. It will provide you with a sense of patterns on how you live and conduct your everyday life. Soon we'll feel comfortable with our daily habits and don't have to think about what we should do every day.
It will break your bad habits
Our routine helps us form good habits that will be beneficial in fulfilling our full potential. But on the other side, it also helps to leave bad habits that don't do any good for us. We can replace our bad habits with good ones by forming daily routines consciously.
It will decrease procrastination
When a collection of activities become a routine for us, then it reduces the possibility that we will hesitate to do them. It becomes implanted into our brain, making us do it subconsciously.
Helps Reduce Stress and Facilitate Relaxation
There will always be situations in our lives that are beyond our control, and we need to accept that. However, there are many things we can control, especially if we form a daily routine. When we plan and stick to a routine, it reduces a lot of stress because we don't need to always think and worry about what needs to get done.
What do you think of our tips? Did it help you to be healthier as a college student? Share with us in the comment section! Don't forget to share these tips with your fellow college friends!