Find the Work, Play, and Study Balance with Food
By: Lindsay Dolak
In college, we take a plethora of classes and attend an inordinate amount of speakers, events, and parties, all in the hopes of figuring out what we like, what we’re good at, what we’re meant to do. Really, though, college isn’t much more than finding the seemingly elusive balance between completing exceptional schoolwork, maintaining a quality social life, and for the love of everything, getting enough sleep. These four years encompass a difficult journey, no doubt. Luckily, food is there to calm the main stresses of the work, play sleep balance we all seek to achieve.
Schoolwork Stress: You left the 10-page midterm paper in its entirety until the night before it’s due, despite it being listed on the syllabus since the first day of the semester.
Food Fix: An all-nighter (breakdown at dawn included) requires brain food, or, as I like to call it: CARBS. However, be cautious and avoid anything too heavy that might overcome your Adderall binge, and leave your eyes feeling heavy. Try making a big pot of quinoa or brown rice or wheat pasta earlier in the day. Mix it with your favorite jarred red sauce, vegetables, or just butter, garlic pepper, and parmesan cheese, and enjoy bowl full after bowl full as needed throughout the night. Remember, 10 pages is really only 5 not double-spaced.
Social Life Stress: Your usual fling-but-not-anything-serious-more-of-a-fuck-buddy hasn’t texted you all day…and it’s Thursday night! Your roommate just informed you that they were hooking up with someone else at flip night and now your shit out of luck for your standard post-bars romp.
Food Fix: Try to distract yourself from the extra friendly freak sesh you will now be missing out on, and spend your late-night with some cozy comfort food– because rejection requires a hug, and food hugs fall second to few. Nothing mends a superficial heartbreak like a brie and dark chocolate chip grilled cheese. Seriously. Grab a loaf of thick-sliced bakery bread, grill it in coconut oil on a skillet and build your grilled cheese with a mild brie and dark chocolate chunks. Flip and let sizzle until the cheese and chips are oozing out the sides and you can’t bear to not eat it any longer. Look at you! You’re a chef. Who doesn’t want to sleep with a chef?!
Sleep Stress: On top of writing last minute 10-page papers, and staying up late text-feuding with your former weekend bed buddy, when you finally can catch some sleep, your roommate stays up catching up on shows late into the night, (your shut-eye schedule is essentially dictated by reruns and American Horror Story).
Food Fix: You may remember your mom pouring warm milk down your throat to get you to shut up and sleep when you were young and annoying. Switch warm dairy milk with warm almond milk and blend it with other sleep enhancers for a smoothie that promises sound shut-eye. Cherries contain melatonin, and bananas contain serotonin and magnesium, which are natural muscle relaxants. Blend in some chopped almonds and a sprinkle of nutmeg, because both also can induce sleep. Sleep tight and rest up for another day of procrastinating and partying.