T Nation

Staying Lean on Cafeteria Food?

How do you recommend one staying lean when going into a college cafeteria food?

Staying away from the entree and just going to the sandwhich bar or what? Moderation? Just seems like I can’t stop myself from going for seconds and thirds xD. Recommendations on how any of you guys did it during college?

I am in the same boat man … cafeteria food sucks … most of the time are not healthy and don’t make you feel satisfied

what I try to do is eat a lot of fruits(breakfeast) and salad (lunch) since they have it on a buffet style where you just pick what to eat

I never eat the pizzas cheeseburger and those kind of stuff … stay away from soda … drink only water (it will even save you money, they shouldn’t chrge for water)

also here at my college they have a place where they make the sandwich to order(is it like your place ?) So I usually ask for single stack whole wheat with turkey or any other lean meat, and put a lot of veggies there with no souce of anykind !!

I know it is hard but it is doable …
abuse a lot of fruits and veggies

Yeah I absolutely abused the fruits this morning…

hahaha

i just ate shit and got fat for two years. i call it my dave tate phase. then i moved out of rez and got a room in a house and started making my own food. left more money for beer. then i quit drinking and started spending the money on supps.

Join a sport. Most college students just sit on their asses all day. Just stay active and you’ll be fine.

We have a salad bar here which has hard boiled eggs, tuna, and grilled chicken at the end of it. So I just make a big salad, craploads of eggs and chicken, and then salad dressing or oil/vinegar.

I’ve found the easiest approach to cafeteria food is to follow the “balanced, non-mixing” approach to food, meaning P+C or P+F meals. So if I put together a salad with chicken and I also made myself a sandwich, I’d use low-fat dressing on my salad. But if I didn’t have carbs, I’d utilize a fattier dressing to compensate.

This method allows for a lot more variety besides salad. There’s hardly any cooked vegetables here, which sucks, so I basically have salad to eat or…salad.

Another method I’ve used is using a modified V-Diet. Basically, all meals are V-Diet shakes except when you go to the dining hall, go out, or are drinking. It keeps calories low, protein high, keeps you full (for the most part), and is convenient for the college student.

I found it pretty easy to “survive” on cafeteria food. Basically I was doing the Berardi P+F and P+C combos… so for lunch usually it’d be P+F, meaning a huge salad with an emphasis on cottage cheese, eggs and olives.

P+C meals are easier to come by, usually at the sandwich counter I’d order a “healthy” sandwich, or after a particularly gruelling workout I’d have a pizza or cheeseburger. Those “Naked” juices were a great treat once in a while too (hm, meaning every day… damn I was addicted to those).

Eat less, make better choice, get more active or a combination of those.

You really answered your own ? you know what to do what to eat go for seconds or thirds if needed just dont get the crap on all three plates get foods that work for you.

When i was a freshman and had to eat at the dining hall i tried to stick to the P+C and P+F combinations (same thing as someone said above). I ate a lot of eggs, tuna, fruit, salads, peanut butter, and deli turkey, and I took advantage of the baked turkey, fish or chicken if they were serving it that day. I also went through a lot of protein powder and bars. IMO the worst thing you can do to gain your freshman 15 (or college 60 haha) and not make gains in the gym is to drink. My freshman year I drank beer like crazy and gained 20 pounds. Maybe 2 pounds was muscle. Maybe. I pretty much ruined any gains I could have made with my clean eating by drinking so much alcohol. Speaking from personal experience, I know its hard to resist drinking at parties, but your progress in the gym will suffer if you don’t.

Maybe this it’s just because I’m anal but I suggest individuals invest some time in reading some of JB’s more recent articles. You’ll find that the P+C/P+F is far less crucial (i.e. there’s nothing special about the food combinations), and has become more of a nutrient timing consideration. Starchy carbs around workouts, fruits, veggies, legumes, and incidentals outside of the peri-workout period depending on individual tolerance. You can add olive oil to your PWO whole wheat pasta dinner. More than anything, by default, your fat will be lower at a meal higher in carbs unless you’re absolutely nuts about getting in tons of calories.

I keep seeing this come up and people forget the original message - eating refined carbs and saturated fats in the absence of protein is a recipe for fat gain. Unsaturated (monos and polys) reduce the insulinogenic effects of carb consumption - thus far, only saturates have been shown to have a synergystic relationship with carbohydrates.

For a quick and dirty summary of JB’s current day methodology I’d read “Lonnie vs Berardi” (do a search for it) on this site.

it’s better to eat an extra burger patty or two with all that protein in it than to go over to the icecream machine and enjoy some sugar. stay eating clean as good as you can. go for whole foods as often as possible. If it starts to be really difficult, you might wanna try other food halls at your school. Often times different halls will have different emphasis on the types of food they serve.

It might also pay off to be extra nice to the those kitchen staff folks, let them hook you up!

The best advice I can offer you though is to do what I did. Work at a sorrority house in the kitchen (a hash job). It was anywhere from 2-4 hours of work a week and we’d get all our meals for free (and pay). Different houses have different setups (food, meal time, how much work you’ll need to do, pay, etc…). You might also want to take the hotness and bitchiness factor of the girls into consideration too.

[quote]ubl0 wrote:
i just ate shit and got fat for two years. i call it my dave tate phase. then i moved out of rez and got a room in a house and started making my own food. left more money for beer. then i quit drinking and started spending the money on supps.[/quote]

LOL, that would seem to be the natural progression. Though my gut didn’t appear until that 2nd phase.

[quote]CU AeroStallion wrote
It might also pay off to be extra nice to the those kitchen staff folks, let them hook you up!

The best advice I can offer you though is to do what I did. Work at a sorrority house in the kitchen (a hash job). It was anywhere from 2-4 hours of work a week and we’d get all our meals for free (and pay). Different houses have different setups (food, meal time, how much work you’ll need to do, pay, etc…). You might also want to take the hotness and bitchiness factor of the girls into consideration too.[/quote]

being nice to cafeteria workers helped me make my meal plan stretch into december second year (ran out in november first year). we didn’t have sororities or frats, but being nice to girls with extra money left on meal plans near the end of the year can net you a lot of free food. sardines in water are cheap as tuna with more healthy fat and less metals, buy veggies and fruit at a market, not the store.

Look up Steve Berardi’s 2-part article “School Days.”

[quote]Yoda-x wrote:
Look up Steve Berardi’s 2-part article “School Days.”[/quote]

Yes a must read for you all.

[quote]Dabubzilla wrote:
When i was a freshman and had to eat at the dining hall i tried to stick to the P+C and P+F combinations (same thing as someone said above). I ate a lot of eggs, tuna, fruit, salads, peanut butter, and deli turkey, and I took advantage of the baked turkey, fish or chicken if they were serving it that day. I also went through a lot of protein powder and bars. IMO the worst thing you can do to gain your freshman 15 (or college 60 haha) and not make gains in the gym is to drink. My freshman year I drank beer like crazy and gained 20 pounds. Maybe 2 pounds was muscle. Maybe. I pretty much ruined any gains I could have made with my clean eating by drinking so much alcohol. Speaking from personal experience, I know its hard to resist drinking at parties, but your progress in the gym will suffer if you don’t.[/quote]

In my experience as long as you drink once a week or elss you’re OK with the alc. I think it relaxes the CNS too.