I found myself back on campus over winter break for two weeks without a meal plan. Having never bought groceries for myself, I stumbled into Price Chopper with nothing but a food stipend, an empty stomach and a dream.
Eating food is something I’m pretty experienced with, so how different could making it be?
I know that it’s generally better to avoid buying full, premade meals (Pop-Tarts, oven-ready pizzas) and instead opt for the things that can be put together to make original meals that also look vaguely like they might have come out of nature (bananas, peanut butter).
It’s important to note here that my entire food perspective is skewed by these past few years of college dining halls. The average residential student’s culinary life is not typical.
There are great things about dining halls – namely, the sense of community that comes when hundreds of people within an area share a common eating experience. But they won’t exactly prepare you to feed yourself once the time comes.
I wound up buying a lot of eggs. I can work with eggs. Scrambled and hard-boiled might be the same constituent food, but at the very least they feel different.
And there’s more to feeding oneself than just cooking. An egg isn’t just an egg. It’s 70 calories derived from five grams of total fat, 185 milligrams of cholesterol, 70 milligrams of sodium and six grams of protein. What does that mean? I don’t know.
Food is changing, too, or the attitudes taken towards it. If I don’t know what cholesterol means, I’m probably not ready for a discussion on probiotics.
Actually going out and buying my own groceries made me realize that for someone who has been eating food for 20 years, I know very little about it.
So my resolution for 2016 will be exclusively food-related. I’m going to try to learn things about it.
As it turns, probiotics are just bacteria in your body that are good for you, which is great!
Chris McDermott is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.