Feel free to stuff your face
I enjoyed reading the column entitled “Combatting weight gain, college-style” in last week’s Friday issue of The Daily Targum. I think weight and health in general is a very touchy subject for many of us, not just women.
Entering college, I was never concerned about the “freshman 15.” I wanted to experience my first year and eat all the delicious foods the school had to offer. Eating the same foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner in high school was boring, so having so many options at college was like stepping onto a new planet. The first time I ever ate an entire pizza by myself was from takeout at Neilson Dining Hall while watching a movie with people I met in my first-year residence hall. Food is a social and bonding experience. And food is something you cannot ignore. I do believe in living a healthy lifestyle and staying active, but I also believe in the occasional treat or fat sandwich from the grease trucks.
I also think gaining weight in college has a lot to do with growing up. Our bodies are getting older, and we no longer have the same metabolism we once had. Also, high school rarely called for all-nighters or grueling nights in the library. We need energy to do well in school, and energy comes from sleep and food. If we limit ourselves so much just to ignore weight gain or the “freshman 15,” we are only hurting ourselves and may regret it later.
As we mature, we learn that appearance does not matter as much as character and personality does. You won’t get that cute boy’s attention by being a size 2. And if that is the only reason why that cute boy is attracted to you, he is probably not the right one. We should focus on being happy rather than focusing on our appearances.
I admit, it is difficult to do when we are bombarded by images of buff men and toned women on the covers of every magazine sold at the student centers. But if your insecurities get in the way of going out to dinner with friends or getting that bubble tea from Noodle Gourmet on a Friday night, then something is not right. How often will you be able to eat that fat sandwich or bubble tea after you graduate from Rutgers? Let’s learn to accept that we are getting older and should not weigh the same as we once did in high school and embrace our new environment and bodies. Eating healthy and exercising will lead to a longer life, but having an occasional treat will not kill you. Skipping that workout won’t kill you either. You won’t remember that slice of pizza you ate and how many calories you consumed, but you will remember the people you were with and how you felt at the time. So next time that shy, cute boy asks you out for dinner at Stuff Yer Face, do not turn it down and just stuff your face.
Sarah Jaihe Lee is a School of Arts and Sciences junior majoring in English with a minor in music.