I actually managed to avoid study binges during my finals this semester (which is new since I ALWAYS give in during finals)
Some recommendations I have:
1. Drink tons of water. It's great in that it simultaneously keeps you hydrated, which keeps your brain working at top capacity, and prevents you from snacking when you're just thirsty. The brain often confuses thirst with hunger (as I'm sure you have already heard)
2. While this does take time, you should buy some veggies and cut and separate them into little bags, so that you have an allotted amount of healthy snack food for a study session. I made some low-fat spicy hummus to go along with carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, celery, and sugar snap peas. One sandwich-bag full is enough to snack on during a 4-hour study session at least. Having the allotted amount also prevents over eating.
For me, I stay focused easier when I have something to munch on, and veggies are always a good choice.
3. Don't give in to buying the high-sugar and high-fat snacks. Sure, they taste good (especially when you're stressed), but you'll most likely hit a sugar crash half way into your study session and then it's all over. Substitute the chocolate and potato chips for healthier alternatives, like chopped apples or low-sodium wheat thins!
4. Finally, avoid energy drinks. I can't say avoid coffee (because that would be completely hypocritical), but if you do drink coffee, don't get the Venti quadruple-shot white mocha with whip cream. Try a simple nonfat, unflavored latte (I choose soy), or a cup of strong drip coffee with some added soy milk and sweetener. Trust me- at the end of the night you'll feel better because you won't have a terrible sugar rush, and you'll be more productive over-all. If you can drink some strong black tea instead of coffee, that's even better! I like Earl Grey with a little bit of plain soy milk added. It even tastes good when it gets cold!
GOOD LUCK with your finals!! (:
"We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them."
I carry bottles of water. Sometimes just drinking some water will be enough to remind me that it is the stress and I'm not actually hungry.
Dried fruit (no sugar added!!) popcorn (I toss with a small bit of chocolate chips so I'm not tempted to go get something sweeter...)
Also, be sure to take some time out for a real meal. Even just a quick salad from the salad bar (Whole Foods salad bar has all sorts of veggies and protiens to choose from). I know it is hard, but stepping away from the books for 20 minutes really helps me clear my mind and stay focused.
current weight: 237.2
Fitness Minutes: (40,061) Posts: 5,092 4/25/12 5:20 P
Meditating with deep breathing for 5 minutes will relax you SO much! Another thing that might help is stepping away from the books for 10-20 minutes and going for a walk. Keep fruits and veggies around, Clif Bars/Luna Bars, almonds or walnuts, etc. And avoid too much caffeine.
I know exactly how you feel. What I have found to be really helpful is to much on vegetables (they have less calories and sugar than fruit....not that I'm saying fruit is bad) and also chew a lot of sugar free gum. They now make minty gum and fruity gum, dessert gum. A lot of times it is just the chewing feeling that makes us feel better. Just in general I would stay away from high calorie drinks such as sodas and energy drinks. Hope this helps! Good luck on your finals
current weight: 162.0
Fitness Minutes: (1,460) Posts: 16 4/23/12 8:06 P
Help! I am starting finals and I am afraid ill fall into the crazy snack binges that happen with this stressful time. Any ideas for easy healthy meals? That will be easy to take to the library to study
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