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Question:

From Bloomington, Indiana, USA:

I am a freshman at Indiana University and I have been having a real hard time with eating right. There is a food court in my dorm as opposed to traditional dining. How do I control my servings with a fast food style eating? It is hard to measure the food, and the amount they give is not always the same

Answer:

I know how difficult eating away from home can be. It might help if you do some measuring of foods when your have an opportunity at home so you will have an idea of what one serving looks like. You may need to get a book such as a carbohydrate counting book or Exchanges for all Occasions from the American Diabetes Association or the International Diabetes Center. Many book stores carry books giving nutrient content of various foods by serving size. Measuring is the key and being able to accurately estimate when unable to measure.

JM

Additional Comments from Lois Finney, diabetes dietitian: Several other thoughts:

  • Talk with the student health service and see if there is a support group for students with diabetes. They may very well discuss the freedom of the food system, but also the challenges of dealing with that freedom.
  • If you can talk with the food service, they may be able to help you with portion sizes, or content of menu items, so you would know that 1 fajita chicken supreme is 2 starches, 2 meats and 4 fats, not 1 starch, 2 meat and 1 fat.
  • Choose foods at first that you know can fit in pretty easily to your meal plan, such as a hamburger and a salad and diet soda, then trysome of the other options and monitor your blood glucoses about 1 1/2 to 2 hours after the meal to see if you did okay on the portions compared to your food and insulin
  • Watch for the "freshman forty." Portions do count and keep in mind salads are great, but the dressings on top can be costly in calories.

Enjoy your college life, but do try to stay as active as possible. It is easy to study both the books and the food and gain some weight. Lois

LSF

Original posting 13 Dec 1998
Additional comment added 29 May 1999
Posted to Meal Planning, Food and Diet

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:02
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