Fight the 'Freshman 15' With 'Dorm Room Diet'

Daphne Oz has written a new book, "The Dorm Room Diet," about how to lose weight when faced with the late-night munchies and social events so common in college.

Oz, whose father is Dr. Mehmet Oz, author of "YOU: An Owner's Manual," has tips on how to snack in a healthy way that works for anyone from a college student worried about gaining the "Freshman 15" to a busy working mom on the go.

Some of her tips include:

Plan ahead.

Join in but don't go overboard.

Have a preparty snack.

Use portion control.

Substitute when you can; use moderation when you can't.

Bad: Chips, cookies

Good: Soy crisps, nuts, chocolate chips

Bad: Hamburgers, hot dogs, macaroni salad, potato salad

Good: Tossed salad, chicken breast, deli meats

Bad: Cheese plate, daiquiri

Good: Light beer, wine, fruit plate, apple

Bad: Box of pizza, box of cheese nips

Good: Slice of pizza, snack-size Cheese Nips

Bad: Ice cream, chocolate

Good: Low-fat frozen yogurt, chocolate-covered strawberries

From "The Dorm Room Diet":

Your Family Eating Portrait

Answer the following questions about how you and your family ate while you were living at home.

The questions will help you get an idea of how the choices you made and the rules you followed (or didn't follow) at home helped to create the eating habits you brought to school with you.

1. How many meals did you eat per day?

2. How regular were these meals? Did they fall within one hour of the same time each day?

3. Did you eat snacks? If so, how many daily? Were these snacks generally prepackaged or freshly prepared (nuts, fruits, veggies, and yogurt count as freshly prepared)?

4. How many meals, per day, did you eat with another person? How often did you eat sitting down with your entire family?

5. Would you say that your meals were "rushed" or "relaxed"? Did you take time to enjoy your food?

6. Did you regularly eat while watching TV, talking online or on the phone, or otherwise occupied?

7. How many meals, per day, did you prepare for yourself?

8. Did you help plan meals or did you eat what was put on the table?

9. How often (meals per week) did you eat in a restaurant or order takeout?

10. Did you prefer home-cooked meals or something made outside the home?

11. How healthfully, on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the most healthy, do you think your family eats? Your close friends?

12. On the same scale of 1 to 10, how healthfully do you think you eat now?

13. Would you say that you are aware of what you should be eating, in terms of how many servings of fruits, veggies, carbohydrates, proteins and fats you should be getting daily? If yes, how successful, on a scale of 1 to 5, 5 being very successful, are you at following these guidelines?

14. If you answered "yes" to question 13, please list the source of your information (parents, Internet, teacher, and so on).

15. What is the single biggest obstacle to eating healthfully you face?

What did you learn about your family's eating habits and attitudes from answering these questions?

Maybe you never realized how much, or how little, control you had over what, when, and how you ate.

If your parents were very hands-off about scheduling and eating meals, you may have made a lot of your own food decisions, which may have left you overweight and unhealthy.

On the other end of the spectrum, if your parents made all the choices for you, leaving you no opportunity to develop self-discipline, it may have had the same result.

What's important at this point is to recognize how the habits you learned at home affect your health and to begin making changes.

For instance, if you learned that at home you usually ate while doing something else -- talking on the phone or watching TV, for instance -- understand that being distracted while you eat keeps you from (a) enjoying the food you're eating and (b) being aware of when you've had enough, which can lead to overeating.

Or maybe you learned that having to prepare meals for your little sister made you more health conscious, because you felt responsible for making sure she ate well.

Whatever you realized about yourself by creating this brief portrait, now it's up to you to take this information and use it to help yourself.

The good news is that, even if your family life left you with less-than-perfect eating habits, college provides a fresh start and is a great place to take control of your health.