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Student Health Guide

Content Last Updated on January 8, 2020

Why is it important to stay healthy at Uni

At university you won’t have your parents nagging you about eating healthy food or exercising. It can become easy to fall into the pattern of sleepless nights and constantly eating take-away food. Life at university can be very stressful, and going to the gym or eating some vegetables is usually the last thing on your mind. However, it is very important to stay healthy at university.

Going to the gym, getting a good night’s sleep, and eating well can all contribute to greater mental and physical health. This will allow you to work better, feel better, and have more fun at university!


How to Stay Healthy at University

1. Eating the right food

Research has shown that eating healthy food instead of pizza, kebabs and burgers can improve your mental health and reduce fatigue. If you are often left feeling tired and sluggish, try swapping out that pizza for a home cooked stir fry which is cheap and easy to cook! Similarly, try swapping out those snacks you have daily for healthier alternatives such as rice cakes, apples and bananas and save those sweets and crisps for a special occasion. Check out our guide to cooking at university.


2. Getting fresh air

Now we all know that university is stressful, especially when you have multiple deadlines to prepare for or exams to revise for. However, you cannot spend all your time sat in your bedroom or library – you need that fresh air! Whether it is going for a run around a local park or simply walking to the supermarket, it is always good to get some fresh air to improve blood flow, digestion and your heart rate.


3. Exercising

Apart from the obvious benefits of exercising such as staying fit, exercise also increases your endorphins. This makes you feel better and helps you get a better night’s sleep! Exercising can take many forms, so don’t worry if you’re not an avid runner! Going to your student gym is a great start. These gyms are often available at a dramatically reduced price compared to normal gyms, so make sure you make the most of it! You can take part in their gym classes if they offer them, which can help you to make friends as well as get fit. If you don’t fancy the gym, make sure you try to walk 10,000 steps per day, or even join one of your universities sporting societies. Exercising is the perfect accompaniment to university: It helps you work better, feel better, and sleep better, all of which will contribute to a healthier and happier student life!

If you are looking for more tips to staying healthy at university, check out our full guide here.


Student Gyms

Most universities offer an on-campus gym which is an excellent way to keep fit and save those pennies! University gyms are notoriously cheaper than other gym chains purely because they are there to fit into a student’s budget. The majority of universities will offer discounts to those who are part of a sports society as they may need to use the facilities in order to train each week. Discounts will also often be given for ‘off-peak’ times. Most gyms they have off-peak prices which are generally earlier in the morning and later in the evening, so if you are an early riser and like to get your workout done and dusted before the day has begun then choosing this membership would be ideal for you. But don’t worry, if the thought of waking up early to hit the gym disgusts you, then you can also go in the evening after you’ve finished with work and lectures.

If you feel unmotivated to go to the gym by yourself, or would be more comfortable training with an expert instructor, then maybe you should try out a gym class. Most university gyms offer workout classes which you can sign up for free if you have a gym membership. These are often run by students themselves, and can be a great way to make new friends and keep healthy! Overall, the student gym is an easy way to keep fit as it offers lots of different price packages and a variety of different classes which will cater for every person’s fitness goals and budget. When you leave university and see the prices many private gyms charge, you will regret not making use of it whilst you could!


Gym discounts for Uni Students

In your first year of university you will most likely be living on campus where the university gym is located, making it easy to join and attend regularly. However, when you move out in second and third year, or maybe if you commute into university, then the university gym may not be as accessible. You may have to join a private gym closer to where you live, and this can often be expensive. However, there are some gyms which offer student discounts that could save you significant costs over the course of the year.

Pure Gym offers a great student discount on their contracts. They have 250 gyms nationwide, so there could likely be one near to your student accommodation. To get up to 30% off the monthly price, you will have to enter into a 6, 9 or 12 month contract. Contracts can be scary, but we find that entering a gym contract makes you much more motivated to go regularly! To get the discounted rate all you have to do is sign-up to the gym through the UNiDays app.

Another excellent value gym is 4xercise4less. Each of its gyms has over 400 pieces of equipment, 40 classes per week, and even a separate ladies gym. The gym itself is already at budget level, as it only costs £9.99 a month! But as a student you can join for just £1.00, and get your first month half price.

If you happen to live is Glasgow, then check out our dedicated ‘How to Stay Fit in Glasgow’ guide.


Mental Health at University

Thousands of students in the UK are affected by a variety of mental health problems. In fact, it has been revealed that ¼ students will experience some form of mental health issue during their studies. The most common type of mental health issues that students will face are depression and anxiety, both of which can be caused by a number of stressful situations. University can present a number of problems; you may feel a huge pressure to do well in your studies, save your money, and maintain friendships with a variety of people.

If you believe you are suffering from anxiety, depression, or another form of mental illness, make sure you seek help. Almost all universities offer mental health support, so visit your university website to find out what they are offering. You can also seek help for free with the NHS. If you want more advice on dealing with mental health issues, make sure to visit our full guide here.


Health Apps

From seeing an online doctor, to tracking your period or sleep patterns, there are so many apps available today to keep in control of your health. Check out our guide for the top 5 student health apps here.



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