Fresher advice: Food for thought

Chris Liddle contributed to this report.

It’s that time of the year again when thousands of students descend on the university campus.

For some, it is their first time away from home. The newly-found freedom is a great thing. No more parents or siblings to cramp your style so bring on the booze, right?

Eating healthily at university can be affordable. Photo: SearchNet Media

Eventually, the drinking gets old and your body is crying out for something healthy but your bank balance has taken a hammering. Fear not, it’s very easy to eat healthily without spending your rent at an organic farm shop. Just keep to a few simple rules.

Shop Around

It’s easy to walk the three minutes to the local convenience shop, but the choice will be limited and a lot of the stock will be expensive. Remember, you are paying for the convenience.

Supermarkets offer some good deals, especially if you are bulk buying with your housemates. For the best quality and value for money, local markets are worth visiting as they have a lot to offer and, if you go at the end of the day, they might even throw in a few freebies.


Haggling isn’t the best idea in a supermarket as you will most likely get some odd looks, but if you’re at the local butcher or green grocers then it’s definitely worth giving it a go. They can only say no and you may get some extra change in your pocket.

Five A Day

The government say we should eat five portions of fruit or vegetables every day. It’s not as difficult or expensive as people think and, if you do it for a few months, you feel great. To keep it cheap, buy frozen vegetables. They last longer and often contain more than one of your five a day.

Also, have a glass of fruit juice with breakfast. A smoothie contains two of your five a day and you can pick up a litre (several days worth) for under £2. Try having an apple instead of that chocolate bar or having a home made salad instead of the generic brand pasty you got when walking past the garage.

Plan Ahead

If you plan the week’s meals before you go shopping you can avoid buying excess food that is going to sit in the fridge for a month.

With a set plan of meals and a corresponding shopping list you can also avoid buying those so called bargains that end up breaking the bank.

If you follow these simple rules, you can eat on a student’s budget and keep your mind and body in good condition for the years of study to come.

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