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With the fast-paced life of a student, nutrition can often be set as a low priority, leading to long-term problems.

The alarm rings, signaling its time to wake up, but just let a few more minutes of sleep. Abruptly waking up, the clock reads 7:10 am, its late! Quickly putting on clothes and heading towards the kitchen. Not enough time to cook eggs and make a lunch. Grab textbooks and keys, running out the door.

Have your mornings ever looked like this? Staying up the night before with piles of homework can lead us to be too tired to wake up the next morning. This leads a domino effect, while staying up and finishing homework it causes students to sleep in and throw off their normal schedule for getting ready in the morning. Sleeping in late with not enough time to eat a well rounded breakfast leads to lack of attention in classes and energy throughout the day.

Throughout elementary and high school, it is important for students to create healthy habits in order to learn and be their best in school. With sports, academics, and homework it is crucial that students seek a certain amount of hours of sleep while nourishing their bodies with the right foods.

Nutritionist and soon to be dietitian, Tawnie Kroll, shares some personal tips for students about the importance of healthy habits.

Implementing healthy eating habits early on in life will likely carry on to your adult years. I have always had a passion for cooking and physical activity, I wanted to dedicate my life to educating people on eating for optimal health. — Tawnie Kroll

“We are all busy and have a lot going on in our days but that doesn’t mean we should push nutrition or our health aside,” Kroll said. “Students, especially in high school are still growing and need the essential nutrients to maintain a healthy lifestyle.”

Studies show that students should at least have 9 1/2 hours of sleep during the week. This can sometimes be impossible due to sports practices, youth group, homework and dinner added to the schedule. According to National Sleep Foundation, students with less hours of sleep can lead to a depressive mood. Instead of ending the night in front of a computer, read a book, take a shower or listen to music to calm your mind.

Using your sleep time wisely can help in several ways such as: acting less stressed, boost your energy, better your academic performance and can improve your confidence and self-esteem. When Kroll was young, her parents helped enforce healthy habits that were useful to her as an adult.

“Implementing healthy eating habits early on in life will likely carry on to your adult years,” Kroll said. “I have always had a passion for cooking and physical activity, I wanted to dedicate my life to educating people on eating for optimal health.”

When it comes to breakfast remember that it is the most important meal of the day. Whether your short on time it is still very important to fit in a nutritious meal. Lack of a good breakfast leads to hunger before lunch and a likeliness to over eat later on. Foods like oatmeal, greek yogurt, bananas, eggs, and fiber cereal can help really fortify your day and prove better success in the long run.

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Nutritionist Tawnie Kroll recommends that students pre-plan their meals for busy days.

As lunch rolls around, some of us are starving and ready to dig in that peanut butter sandwich we’ve been craving all morning. It is important to create a lunch that has both features variety and protein. Kroll suggests to stay away from processed/packaged foods, concentrated sweets, and energy drinks.

Setting out a lunch the night before and getting enough hours of sleep saves you the chain of consequences of a late night sleep. On Kroll’s food blog, Kroll’s Korner, she shares a variety of simple breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks that are useful for staying on track in our eating lifestyles.

Looking for an yummy energy power up snack? Check out Krolls recipes for No Bake Peanut Butter Bites, 5 Ingredient Energy Bars, and Homemade Soy Nut Butter Granola.

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This writer can be reached via Twitter: @jennypenny8835 and via Email: Jenny King.

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