Cal Poly Freshmen Talk About Food

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Don’t Stress Finals

Finals are a week away. Procrastination is no longer an option. It is time to prepare for papers, presentations, and tests. Finals week is extremely stressful, and the pressure to do well can cause you to change your habits and even act differently. It is important during this time to stay calm and avoid emotional eating.

Emotional eating has many causes, but is easily avoidable. If you can recognize the source of emotional eating, it can be fixed. Here are some of the main reasons stressed people overeat, according to About.com:

Cortisone: the Stress Hormone – Stress increases levels of cortisone in the body. High levels can be positive, but when they are too high they can cause cravings of sweet and salty foods.

Social Eating – This is occurs mainly amongst women.  It is easy when feeling stressed to turn to a pint of ice cream, reach into a bowl of chips and finish off the guacamole, or eat a huge dinner at restaurant. These types of behaviors make you feel better at the time, but usually you regret them after.

Nervous Eating – This usually happens when you are anxious or stressed and need to do something with your hands or mouth. A lot of people grind their teeth or bite their nails, eating when you are not hungry gives your mouth something to do.

Childhood Habits - When you were a child your parents gave you candy as a reward, to make you feel better after you fell, or to keep you occupied when they needed you to be quiet. This carries into adulthood, because when we are stressed we will eat to feel better, reward ourselves, or to celebrate.

Pent-Up Emotions - One of the final reasons people stress-eat is to hold back emotions. Instead of verbalizing an issue or telling someone how they feel, they will eat a cookie. Some people would rather eat than cope with emotions productively.

It is crucial to recognize habits that cause stress and correct them. According to Spencer’s Institute: Life Coach, stress depletes nutrition. Our emotional and mental state has a huge effect on nutritional metabolism. It is important to find things that help us to relax. Everybody is different; sometimes simply breathing in and out can ease a stressful situation. Explore some different ways to beat stress from Goodhousekeeping.com.

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A Fun Way to Prepare Food

Cooking is a hassle. Thats why people eat out, overeat, snack on junk food, and make poor eating choices in general. The process is usually what turns people away from preparing a meal because it takes a lot of effort. A night in the kitchen usually looks like this:

  • Preparing the meal: Shopping, defrosting, chopping, dicing, cutting, etc.


  • Making the meal: Cooking, searing, pouring, mixing, watching, waiting, etc.

  • Consuming the meal: The fun part.

  • Cleaning up after the meal: Scrubbing, washing, drying, complaining, etc.

Some people love this process, but after a long day at work, this can become a procedure a person comes to dread. Cooking takes a lot of effort, especially when trying to eat healthy and prepare delicious meals. In addition, cooking for a family means that there are many needs that have to be met, which can add stress and a lot of pressure.

Luckily, San Luis Obispo offers quite a few catering services. A lot of times a personal chef can work out to being the same price as eating out, junk food, and wasted food adds up to be. The benefits of a personal chef do not end at easing stress; it can also do emotional wonders to a cook, or the personal in charge of cooking for a household. Some of these benefits are listed on the Article Insider web site.

As mentioned before, there are many catering companies is San Luis Obispo due to the beautiful wine country and entertainment venues on the Central Coast. A personal chef is a different story; I have two personal chefs to recommend:

1. Seasonal Custom Cuisines Delivered

“Good food for busy people, cooked with care.”

Seasonal Custom Cuisine prepares healthy and delicious meals that can be delivered to your house, or picked up at their Atascadero location. Using produce that is organic, fresh, and locally grown, whole grains, and lean meats, Seasonal Custom Cuisine will aid its customers in living a healthy lifestyle that saves time.

Seasonal Custom Cuisines offers three meal plans, or allows you to dictate your needs. These three include: “Belly Fat Diet,” “4 Day Anti Bloat Jump Start Dinners,” and “3 and 4 Day 1600 Calorie-per day Meals.”

2. Gotta Love It! Personal Chef Service

Delicious Home Cooked Meals…Ready When You Are!

Chef Lisa Lovett shops, prepares, and packages healthy home cooked meals after filling out a questionnaire with her customers. Lovett prepares a personal menu for you, pending your approval. All food is packaged and labeled for you in advanced. Preparation and clean up is easy. Lovett prides herself on delicious and nutritious meals that you can “heat and eat.”

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Breakfast at Petit Soleil

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Sweet Tooth?

Dessert is essential for any person with a sweet tooth. Unfortunately, it can be so unhealthy and fattening. That is why is it necessary to eat treats that are low in calories, and contain some kind of nutrients.

San Luis Obispo is home to a few frozen yogurt shops such as, Bali’s (949 Higuera St.), Yogurt Creations (1075 Court St.) and Country Culture Yogurt (746 Higuera St.). All of these locations offer delicious yogurt with an assortment of toppings. All of the above locations carry nonfat, sugar free, and sorbet selections.

You may find yourself asking, is frozen yogurt really better for you than ice cream?

The main difference is that frozen yogurt is made with yogurt and ice cream is made with cream. While frozen yogurt is a healthier alternative it can still be fattening. Yogurt has more minerals and nutrients than ice cream, but it is important to know the nutritional facts before deciding which is more fattening.

Sometimes, all you really need is something sweet to ease the craving. I recommend dark chocolate. Dark chocolate has so many benefits, if eaten in moderation. It contains flavonoids and antioxidants, and is good for the heart, blood pressure, and cholesterol.

Eatingwell.com offers some recipes for Quick and Easy Impromptu Desserts, check them out, most of them take 30 minutes or less and are low in fats and calories.

Most people are suckers for popsicles and ice cream treats from the store. Luckily, there are many low calorie options. Try Skinny-Cow Ice Cream Sandwiches or Fudgecicles. Most of these have below 100 calories and are delicious.

If you prefer a fruity, more tangy treat, then sorbet and chopped up fruits are another great options if your pallet craves a fruity rather than creamy. Browse this web page for some ideas on how to spruce up fruits to make delicious desserts that won’t bust your diet.

Dessert doesn’t have to be considered a bad thing. If eaten in moderation and prepared wisely, it can top off a great meal, or simply put a smile on your dessert-loving face.

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Quiz:

Click the start button to link to a quiz on SLO Healthy Eating.

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Coffee Drinkers Beware

Coffee drinks can be detrimental to any diet. A lot of people tend to forget that drinks do count and can be extremely fattening. Most drinks contain massive amounts of sugar and hundreds of empty calories. It is crucial to know how to order a drink that still tastes delicious but is lower in calories and fat.

Here are 4 recommendations from eHow.com for coffee drinks that are lower in calories:

  1. Always order coffee drinks with fat free or skim milk. Half and half and whole milk contain a lot of fat. Order coffee drinks “fat free” and when you get regular coffee make sure not to use creamer or half and half, use fat-free milk instead.
  2. When sweetening your drink, always use sugar free or low calorie sweeteners.
  3. Order a small. If you would rather enjoy your drink with full fat and sweeteners, opt for the smaller serving. Sometimes all you need to satisfy your craving is a few sips.
  4. Sip your coffee through a straw; the sugar contained in many drinks can cause the enamel on your teeth to erode over time. This allows the drink to travel down your throat and not come into contact with your teeth.

There are many delicious coffee spots in SLO, here are some of my favorites:

1422 Monterey Street
San Luis Obispo

Open
7:00 am – 5:00 pm
Monday – Friday

Saturday
9:30 am – 3:00 pm

Closed Sunday

805.788.0885

* You have to try the Mocha Diva, according to the website, “Our signature drink is our iced blended Mocha Diva ®, a classic blend of ice cream, chocolate, and espresso. All fresh, all real, all delicious (and surprisingly low in fat and calories!)” *


11560 Los Osos Valley Road San Luis Obispo

Open 6:00 am – 9:00pm Monday – Friday

Saturday – Sunday 7:00am – 9:00pm

805-543-3559

* Try the Shot in the Dark Espresso Drink! A chai latte with a shot of expresso, it’s a perfect treat for a cold day. *


1531 Monterey Street San Luis Obispo

Open 7.00am – 7.00pm Everyday

805-547-0278

* All of their ice blended drinks are delicious. *


1065 Higuera Street, Unit 101 San Luis Obispo

Open 5.30am – 11.00pm Everyday

805-783-1300

* Strong flavors and authentic coffee. Try their carrot cake for breakfast, you will not be sorry. *

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