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Student Survival Guide

It can be difficult to stay healthy as a student, away from home and busy with classes, assignments and exams. But it is even more important to take care of yourself when your mind and body are under that kind of extra stress. So, coming up to exam season here are some of our top tips for staying healthy as a student.

Good health for anyone starts with diet and it's good to try and get our vitamins and minerals in through food. But sometimes students aren't the best cooks, after leaving mammy’s home cooked meals or because they just don't have the time to cook healthy meals. As a result, they may not get all the nutritional benefits they would get from a regular healthy diet, a good multivitamin is a great place to start as it can make sure you’re filling in these nutritional gaps.

Let us know in the comments below if there's anything else you do to keep healthy as a student :)


Healthy Breakfast

Students are often rushing to class in the morning and fail to get in a healthy breakfast. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day; it gives us energy and keeps us alert and going for the rest of the day.

Whole Grains - Important component to overall wellness, whole grains aren't just for heart and digestive health. The complex carbohydrates digest slowly and release glucose—your brain's best source of energy, over a longer period of time. The fibre in whole grains keeps cholesterol in check and improves blood flow to the brain and other organs and keeps you feeling fuller for longer.  For a balanced breakfast try a poached egg on a slice of wholegrain toast and some avocado for healthy fats.

Oats - It's hard to beat oatmeal at breakfast. You get a bowlful of B vitamins which are important for the nervous system and energy, fibre to keep you full as well as potassium, zinc, and vitamin E. Adding toppings like flax seed, nut butter and berries will boost the nutrition even more.

Smart Snacking

Eating little and often is an excellent strategy for students in maintaining energy levels and a steady supply of glucose to the brain. Aim for three meals and a mid-morning and mid-afternoon snack and something small one to two hours before bed. This will help maintain your blood sugar levels while you sleep, staving off early morning bouts of insomnia and panic. We recommend dark chocolate, snack bars that are low in added sugar like Happy Pear or Kind bars, popcorn, a handful of nuts or nut butter on apple slices or rice/corn cakes.

Regular Exercise

Everyone should be trying to include regular exercise in their week, students in particular should take exercise regularly as it will keep stress levels in check and help provide a better night's sleep. A run or a brisk walk a few times a week can work wonders for energy levels, mental wellness and overall health. Many students complain of sore backs and joints from sitting in uncomfortable chairs all day or from hunching over their laptop for hours at a time. Take breaks to do some simple stretches and try rubbing A.Vogel Arnica Gel on sore muscles and joints.

Combatting Stress with Food

Students often get stressed trying to meet deadlines and get through hefty workloads. Taking regular study breaks and including some stress fighting, brain food in your diet can help.

Green Tea contains Theanine, an amino acid which is often used for treating anxiety and high blood pressure. It has been shown to reduce stress, blood pressure and anxiety levels, and leave you feeling more tranquil and capable. Try one of our green teas from Clipper or Pukka. Theanine is also available in capsule form.

Omega 3 Fatty Acids are important for healthy brain function, the heart, joints and our general wellbeing. EPA and DHA found in these oils is thought to help us manage stress and helps make the good mood brain chemical, serotonin. Try add omegas to your diet by including brain foods such as oily fish like salmon or mackerel, walnuts, flaxseed & flaxseed oil, and chia seed.

Magnesium is a mineral essential for nerve and muscle function. Magnesium is known to promote relaxation; therefore, a deficiency can cause stress to have detrimental effects on the body. Eat foods rich in magnesium such as leafy green veg, almonds, avocados and whole grains.
 

Detoxing

For students who have had one too many drinking sessions in the week, try start the day with a wedge of lemon in hot water and make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day. Eating lots of vegetables, fruit and lean proteins will also help you get back on track. For a little extra help detoxing, dandelion or milk thistle are gentle liver cleansers. They help the liver to regenerate and function at a higher capacity and dandelion can help with digestion as well. We'd recommend our favourite Clipper Dandelion Tea and A.Vogel Milk Thistle.

Sleep

A regular sleeping pattern is important for energy levels, combatting stress and regularing metabolism. For students whose sleeping patterns feel all messed up, from staying out late or sleeping in and then cramming into the early hours of the morning, chamomile is a gentle, calming tea made from flowers. Chamomile tea can be helpful for insomnia and digestion after a meal.  We recommend our favourite Pukka Camomile Tea or Pukka Night Time tea which is a delicious combination of chamomile and relaxing oat flower.

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