Author Topic: Stress and Eating Right  (Read 4033 times)

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Stress and Eating Right
« on: Mar 18, 2007, 11:26 pm »
So, as a full time student, stage managing a show, and trying to carry a job, you can imagine I get a bit stressed out.  There are tons of threads on dealing with stress, and one of the most common responses is to eat right.

How do you find the time to be able to eat right, and the ability to do so?  Is there a trick for a student to be able to eat right, and not spend very long making and sitting down to eat?

zayit shachor

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Re: Stress and Eating Right
« Reply #1 on: Mar 19, 2007, 12:46 am »
I think eating right in college is all about good planning. You know you have to eat, so don't get stuck being forced to eat a vending machine dinner - always be prepared with something healthier.

The trick is to figure out which instant/quick food is better for you, and make an effort to eat that instead of the bad stuff. Personally, I eat a lot of frozen dinners, but I buy the organic ones that are actually healthy. It's worth the few extra bucks, trust me.

I also bring fruit to rehearsal to snack on instead of chips or whatever. And I drink juice instead of soda. Protien bars instead of candy - you get the idea.

Also, taking a multivitamin daily makes you feel surprisingly great!

Mac Calder

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Re: Stress and Eating Right
« Reply #2 on: Mar 19, 2007, 01:07 am »
It really isn't that hard to take a packed lunch/dinner to school/collage/work/university/the theatre. Most places are obliged (at least in Australia - I don't know if it is the same in the US) to provide basic "Food warming & storing" appliances (ie a microwave and a fridge).

Plan out what you are going to eat in advance, then pre-prepare as much of it as you can. I eat stirfry at least once a week. So I make sure I have pre-cut all my vegetables and my meat, so all I need to do is combine them in a wok and mix up a sauce (which I usually do in the wok whilst everything else is cooking). I make sure that I cook enough stirfry that I can also take it for lunch the next day.
Combine that with rice (A rice cooker is the best investment I made as a student. Put the rice in, wash out the starch, top up with water to the line, add some salt, put on and walk away. When it is done cooking, it stays warm, fluffy and perfect for up to about 2 hours (after that it dries out a little too much) so you can do homework whilst it cooks, and don't have to watch the clock) and you have a perfectly healthy meal or two.

I was given a book called "100 quick meals with less than 6 ingredients" - or something close to that, I have too many recipie books - which has decent meals that don't take much time to cook or prepare.

And don't rule out the common sarnie (aka sandwich). It does not have to be boring. Chicken, avocado and cheese is beautiful. You can also add sundried tomatoe for more kick. Slap it under the grill for a few seconds... bliss. Try to use different breads like sourdough, foccacia, bagels etc. Even a simple salad sarnie can be turned an oral masterpiece - another personal favorite here - thinly sliced sourdough, lettuce (iceberg lettuce, ripped off leaves, not sliced into thin strips...), tomatoe (if taking to work, take the tomatoe in a separate container and add just before eating), carrot (shredded), beetroot (same as tomatoe if taking to work, as you want the beetroot to be nice and moise) and cheese (I lean towards Old English/Tastey over cheddar, but whatever floats your boat).

And to add a bit of pep to your life. Curry. Probably not the healthiest food arround, but it clears out the digestive tract, tastes good, and has a bit of kick.

My personal opinion is frozen food sucks. Instead, call in at a deli or some other fresh food place and grab something there instead. I would much rather pay AU$10 in a cafe for a meal than about the same at McDonalds for a meal, or for a frozen meal. There is only a few dollars between them really in price, and at least the cafe's food is somewhat fresh and somewhat healthy.
« Last Edit: Mar 23, 2007, 10:50 pm by Mac Calder »


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Re: Stress and Eating Right
« Reply #3 on: Mar 19, 2007, 02:15 am »
Check out this topic: "Food, tech dinners, etc" in the Green Room.,590.0.html

It talks a lot about people's various eating habits and there are some good suggestions in there how to eat healthy amid the crazy hours.


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Re: Stress and Eating Right
« Reply #4 on: Mar 19, 2007, 10:17 am »
One thing that helped me get into eating healthier on busy days is a crock pot.  I will usually make something in my crockpot once or twice a week.  Once it's finished, I package it into single-serving containers and can either bring it in to warm-up all week or stick it in the freezer for those really busy times.  I like the crockpot because I can stick something in on my day off and take care of everything I need to, then come back to a home cooked dinner.  Some of the simple recipes are also great for tossing into the crockpot just before bed and it cooks while you sleep.
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Re: Stress and Eating Right
« Reply #5 on: Mar 23, 2007, 10:27 pm »
When I was in college, I lived in the dorm and ate in the cafeteria.  I was ragged endlessly by my friends, to whom 'freedom' was more important than convenience.  But I didn't have to worry about transportation, was able to eat a whole lot healthier on cafe food than I would have been able to afford to buy for myself, and was able to pay for it all with student loans -which left me more time for shows and studying.  Yes, there are a lot of bad choices in cafe food, but there were also fruits and vegetables and other healthy choices.  Had I been trying to eat off of the money I had, I would have been eating ramen noodles and not much else.  Fruits and vegetables as much as you can, sandwiches as Mac mentioned, the less processed the food has been, generally the better it is for you.  And don't knock oatmeal!  Instant oatmeal has been a life-saving emergency meal for me on numerous occasions.



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Re: Stress and Eating Right
« Reply #6 on: Mar 24, 2007, 06:47 pm »
I've been running into the same problems.  One thing that my friends and I have started doing is a sort of buddy system:  Mary goes into tech in two weeks, so her roommate walks with her to lunch and I go grab her a sandwich or wrap from an on-campus store when she can't get away for dinner.  When I was stressing over two shows at once a few weeks back, Amanda would make sure I got lunch and Jacci would remind me to take a dinner break.  Times when we're all busy, the system pretty much falls apart, so it doesn't solve all problems, but it helps out tremendously.  We rely pretty heavily on the campus stores that offer quick sandwiches and such, so the lack of variety is sometimes boring, but they all have fresh veggies and fruit.

Also, when you do get a chance to go to the store, grab a pack of Gatorade instead of soda.  I tend to get dehydrated quickly, so Gatorade helps out a great deal without tasting bland.  You can also buy the powder to mix up your own, which is usually cheaper but only comes in one or two flavors.
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