Surviving September!

Posted on Friday, September 6th, 2013

Written by Lindzie O'Reilly

September is an exciting time! Whether you are a returning student or new to the University of Guelph, September offers an opportunity for a fresh start – new classes, new people and new experiences. With all that goes on in September, however, it can also be quite stressful at times. Many students have come to the University of Guelph from a different city and have left behind the comforts of home, and home cooked meals! Here are some tips to help you navigate your new food environment, whether that means grocery shopping and cooking all of your own meals, or eating mostly on campus but supplementing with snacks from the grocery store.

Meals and snacks don’t need to involve cooking

Instead, go for quick and easy options such as wraps, sandwiches and snack plates. Stock up on nutrient-dense foods that are easy to assemble, such as:

  • precooked chicken or chicken strips
  • canned tuna
  • nuts and seeds
  • hummus
  • breads, pitas and wraps
  • cereals and granola
  • milk, yogurt and cheese
  • fruits and veggies

Keep snacks with you

With a busy class and social schedule, you may find that you are away from home for longer periods of time. Keep easy to eat snacks such as trail mix, fruit and yogurt or veggies and hummus with you to avoid long gaps between eating occasions. Eating often during the day will help make sure you have the energy, concentration and focus that you need to perform your best. If you’re worried about keeping your food cold, try filling a Tupperware with frozen berries and then topping with yogurt or try freezing hummus in single serving containers.

Learn new skills

If you’ve never grocery shopped or cooked for yourself before, it’s normal to feel unsure of yourself. Just like with anything new, confidence in the kitchen will come with time and practice. Luckily, there are options both on campus and in the Guelph community to build your skills.

Cooking Classes

The Education & Promotion Centre, Student Affairs and The CSA Food Bank have teamed up to offer cooking classes once per month all semester. All classes are held in MINS 214 and cost $3. You must pre-register by emailing . The classes are a great opportunity to meet new people, try new foods and learn new skills. The first class of the year will be held on Thursday September 26th from 5-7pm.

Grocery Store Tours

Zehrs Markets offers free grocery store tours run by a Dietitian. During the month of September, there are two tours focused around helping you make healthy lunch decisions. For more information, email Rebekah at 

  • Saturday September 14th, 2-3pm at the Eramosa Zehrs location
  • Saturday September 28th, 2-3pm at the Imperial Zehrs location

Having trouble adjusting? Feeling overwhelmed and unsure where to start? U of G students can see me for a one-on-one nutrition consult free of charge. No referral is necessary. Visit Health Services reception or call x52131 to book an appointment.

Happy snacking :)

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