It’s hard being Paleo in college. Some would probably wonder: Why? You’ve got access to dining halls that have plenty of fresh vegetables daily! You’ve got food in abundance that you’ve already paid for, don’t have to shop for every week, and don’t even have to prepare for yourself!

You have so many good points. But let me explain myself.

Being Paleo in college is tough. Here’s why.

1. The food is in abundance — but it’s mostly not good for you.

Yeah, even if it’s a gluten-free muffin from a GF fridge, it was still made with soybean oil and still has tons of sugar. Just like everything else on the menu. And that broccoli is questionable FODMAP material, so don’t overdo it. Looks like it’ll be salad, again.

2. The temptation is everywhere. Maybe one time won’t hurt…

It’s just sugar right? My intestines can handle it. And those french fries — who cares if they share the same greasy hot-bed as fried chicken?

3. Remembering the way you used to eat both hurts and helps.

Yes, I am a victim. Of being addicted to sugar. Like everyone else. Must resist memory of GF cupcake!

4. Watch your friends eat. You know they’re slowly killing themselves, but that salad you’ve had everyday with the same exact oil-vinegar combination is just not doing it.

And for crying out loud, why won’t anyone just hop on this band wagon with you so you have a buddy to do it with??

5. Getting new pimples all the time because your omega ratios are off and you still feel like that awkward teenager in high school with wacky hormones.

Nobody look at me ever again!

6. Trying to figure out why your Paleo diet hasn’t solved all of your problems on top of the school work, low-paying job, and internship you have? Good luck, friend.

Do I have SIBO? Candida overgrowth? Do I have an autoimmune condition!? WORK PALEO, WORK!

7. Trying to avoid conversations about alcohol is just impossible.

Seriously, my body can’t handle all the sugar. Not even from one bottle. Can we drink herbal teas and talk about digestive distress, instead?

8. One of the most important things in Paleo — aside from exercise and good nutrition — is almost impossible: sleep.

I would if I could, but the music down the hall is bumping at 10 p.m. and people take their private conversations to … oh yeah, outside my door. Thank you thin walls! I love you!

9. There are too many different diets for anyone to believe you that this one is actually good for you.

Someone support me in my decision! I promise I’ve read every blog out there about Paleo!

10. Getting upset with yourself because all that abundant food finally overtook you. And the self-shame is so much to carry.

Well, it did say it was GF and low-sugar, right? That makes it okay, right? RIGHT???

But there are bright sides to remember while you’re in college and on Paleo:

1. This is a short period of your life. You won’t be tempted this way forever. When you can make your own food, you’ll get to decide which oils to cook with!

You and your special someone can even experiment together! Yay bonding!

2. Self-love is important. Even if you slip, it’ll be okay. Just try each next day to take better care of your body. Your future family will appreciate it.

You can do this. It might take time, but you can. Be loving towards yourself in the process because self-loathing will only put more unnecessary pressure on yourself.

3. It’s okay to take it one day at a time — or one week at a time.

It’s a difficult journey. Looking at baby steps will help it not seem so overwhelming and so impossible.

4. Like all great journeys, it will be worth it in the end. Even if your process of getting there isn’t perfect.

You’re not giving anything up; you’re choosing a new life. It’s all in how you look at it.

5. Life isn’t perfect. It’s a big, beautiful mess.

So try to enjoy it. Find the rays of sunshine between the clouds and hold on to them. 

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