How To Stay Healthy and Happy at University

AFS Team·11 January 2017·5 min read
How To Stay Healthy and Happy at University

Your years at university are likely to be among the most memorable, exciting, and fun years in your life. You will be living with friends, going out lots, and generally enjoying being young and still relatively free.

Despite this, it is easy to struggle at times, whether it is from the irregular sleeping pattern, occasional homesickness, or stress. It is therefore important to find ways to stay emotionally, physically and mentally happy and healthy at university.

1) Drink, Drink, Drink (water)

Drinking a large glass of water after a night out needs to become part of your routine if you’re not doing it already. The combination of excessive dancing and drinking dehydrates you so unless you want to wake up the following morning with a splitting headache, remember to re-hydrate before bed!

Water is also great for concentration so make sure that you drink enough water throughout the day and always bring a bottle to lectures to keep you focused and alert.

2) Eat a Balanced Diet

Maintaining a healthy diet at university isn’t the easiest thing to achieve but getting enough good nutrition is important. Not only does a balanced diet provide your body with energy and help you to maintain a healthy weight but it even promotes good sleep patterns.

Once you get into a good routine of eating healthily you’ll quickly discover that healthy food can be delicious and affordable. Look no further than the ‘Nosh For Students’ cookbooks for cheap and satisfying student meals you can cook throughout the week.

3) Stay Connected  

During your years at university there will be times when you may feel disconnected from loved ones back home. It’s easy to get absorbed into the university bubble and forget to keep in touch with friends and family but it’s important that you do.

Staying connected to loved ones will give you a strong support system if you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed. Something as simple as a short phone call can give you a well needed boost of reassurance and confidence, making you feel loved and valued in times when you need it.

4) Become Your Own Sleeping Beauty

It’s easy to mistake sleeping for a luxury, something you can indulge in when you have the time, but getting enough sleep is a necessity.

For young adults 7-9 hours of sleep is recommended and if you’re regularly getting enough sleep it will have great effects on your health and wellbeing. Not only will it boost your immune system, reducing your chance of getting colds and infections, but it will also improve your motivation and concentration which will allow you to stay on top of university work.

So next time you’re on a night out try and leave the club a little earlier so that you’re not completely worn down the next day!

5) Don’t Internalise

University life can be emotionally draining and hard at times and talking to people about how you’re feeling is one of the simplest ways to manage stress.  Whether you’re struggling with homesickness, relationship problems or the amount of work, opening up to someone about your fears and worries is a great way to deal with them.

You could try talking to a close friend, family member or counsellor or if you’d prefer to write your feelings down, you could also try starting a journal, which is proven to be an effective way of managing stress.

6) Take the Pressure Off

At university there is a pressure to fit the norm of a student, whether it is going clubbing twice a week, drinking excessively, travelling lots or never feeling homesick.

This pressure is of course ridiculous. There is a university student stereotype but you should never feel a need to fit it. If you would prefer to spend a night at home snuggled up in front of a good movie whilst everyone else is out drinking then do it! Doing things just to fit in with everyone else is unlikely to make you happy!

7) “Run Forest Run!"

Working fitness into your routine is relatively easy at university. Most students will walk to and from university meaning that you will be getting at least a small amount of exercise every day.

Exercise can also be a great form of therapy. To wind down after a stressful day you could try yoga, to clear your head running is a great form of release, and for fun you can never beat a good team sport. Find a form of exercise that you enjoy doing and it won’t even feel like a chore.

By Ella Mawson