What makes the average student diet? Take-aways? Ready meals? Alcohol? Healthy food doesn't exactly spring to mind when you think about the traditional student lifestyle. Yet just because you are a student, doesn't mean that you have to follow this pattern. In fact, choose to fill your cupboards and fridge with the following food staples and you'll be ready for every occasion. So aim to get these foods on your first shop. ??? Dried pasta??? Rice??? Couscous??? Dried noodles??? Cereals (oats)??? Tinned tomatoes??? Tinned tuna or salmon??? Baked beans??? Seasoning - salt, pepper, mixed herbs, curry powder, garlic, chilli powder??? Stock cubes??? Olive oil??? Vinegar??? Tomato Ketchup??? Yea/Coffee??? Sugar ??? Milk??? Cheese??? Eggs??? Butter/margarine??? Bacon and ham??? Sliced chicken??? Bread??? Onions??? Garlic As mentioned before, these are your staple foods i.e. foods you should always have to hand. To create truly appetising dishes, you need to top these up with fruit, vegetables and meaty treats.
Now in terms of fruit and vegetables, we recommend buying in small amounts as this will limit wastage. Aim to buy as much as you will eat - and before you say none, it is important that fruit and vegetables form a part of your diet - and choose fresh when possible. With meat too, you need to be careful with how much you buy as you can only freeze meat for so long. Chicken, for instance, has the longest freezer life of up to 6 months, whilst beef, pork and lamb will only last for a few months. Bearing this is mind we suggest teaming up with your flatmates and buying for everyone at the same time as you will be able to get more value for your money by buying in bulk. Online meat suppliers are notoriously good for this, as they will sell wholesale cuts at wholesale prices. More interestingly, top suppliers such as Westin Gourmet offer special student 'survival' packs filled with all your favourite meats: sirloin steaks, pork loins, sausages, chicken fillets and bacon (visit for more details). And we don't know about you, but that is a pretty good selection to keep meal times interesting.
Planning your meals As a student it can be easy to slip into the routine of eating on the go and grabbing what you can, but if you are genuinely interested in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and avoiding the common student pitfall of weight gain, then you need to eat a balanced and varied diet. For this reason, try to bear the above tips in mind when you go on your next shop and encourage your flatmates to adopt a healthy take on food as well. With your friends on board, venturing into the kitchen will be much more appealing. Finally, all of the tips will be working pretty well if you choose the right vendor to buy your food from, irrespective of whether they are lamb shanks, sirloin steaks or plain vegetables you intend to make soup with!