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A healthy body, mind & space

From the food you eat to the ways you manage stress, here are some tips that can contribute to a healthier and happier you.

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There are many different types of support offered at Deakin College. Learn more about them so you can get help whenever you need it.

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Healthy eating tips

A good diet is fundamental to your health and wellbeing

It helps you maintain a healthy weight, improve immunity, reduce the risk of disease, and keep energy levels up all day. But what does ‘good’ look like?

Plan meals and snacks around colourful vegetables, fruits and wholegrains. Add protein and iron rich foods like lean meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, and seeds. Some dairy can also contribute to your protein intake. Focus on heart healthy fats like avocado, nuts, seeds and olive oil.

As a general rule, everything is ok ‘in moderation’. However, too much sugar, caffeine, saturated fat or salt can have a negative impact on your health, sleep, energy and overall wellbeing. Limit foods with low nutritional value, such as chocolate, lollies, potato chips and energy drinks.

Getting active

Keeping your body healthy means staying active

As a student, it’s inevitable that you’ll spend large parts of your day sitting down – either in lectures or at a computer doing assignments – and that can have a negative impact on how your body feels.

Taking the time to move your body outside of your study time can have great benefits to both your physical and mental health. Whether it’s visiting one of the DeakinACTIVE gyms or joining a sporting club, find out more about sport & exercise at Deakin here.

A healthy body also means safe sex and healthy relationships. Sexual health involves every aspect of sexual relationships, pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). If you need any sexual health support or simply have questions, visit one of our Medical Centres.

Staying safe

There are a number of precautions you can take

When travelling:

  • Be alert, walk with confidence, and stay in well-lit and populated areas.
  • If possible, walk with another person and hold your mobile phone or personal safety alarm.
  • Let a friend know where you are going and the time you expect to return.
  • If you feel unsafe, head for a well-populated area or contact someone immediately.
  • Be aware of your increased vulnerability when you are wearing headphones.

When using the ATM:

  • Avoid ATMs in dark or isolated locations.
  • Avoid withdrawing large sums of cash.
  • Memorise your Personal Identification Number (PIN). Do not keep it written down and do not let anyone see you enter your PIN.
  • If you lose your card, report it immediately to your financial institution.

When celebrating:

  • Organise safe transport to and from the venue before you head out.
  • Stick with your friends and look out for one another. Do not leave a friend on their own.
  • Set a drinking limit for yourself and stick to it. Have a water or soft drink between alcoholic drinks.
  • Say ‘NO’ when you have had enough to drink.

Securing personal property:

  • Don’t carry large amounts of money with you, and never display how much you have in your wallet or purse.
  • Keep your bag, wallet and mobile phone where you can see them at all times and don’t leave them unattended.
  • Shoulder strapped bags should be worn across your body. If someone attempts to grab your bag, it is best to let go to avoid injury.
  • Secure your bag in your car before loading or unloading your shopping.
Daniel Eastaugh image

Daniel Eastaugh

“Deakin College has provided me huge number of opportunities – it fit exactly what I needed. I could study over summer, take whatever subject load I felt I was most able to do, and the flexibility fit me perfectly. My overall experience was fantastic – the teachers were friendly and helpful as any questions I had they were able to answer.”

Diploma of Information Technology

Australian student

Alcohol and wellbeing

How much you drink or whether you drink at all is your choice

Alcohol is a socially acceptable and widely used recreational drug in Australia. Many students choose to use alcohol when celebrating, socialising or just relaxing. Moderate consumption of alcohol is fine; however, overuse or abuse of alcohol can have many negative effects on your health, wellbeing, and your academic performance at Deakin.

Here are Australian guidelines on managing your alcohol intake.

If you’re a healthy adult:

  • On any day, you should not drink more than 2 standard drinks – following this guideline will reduce your risk of alcohol-related disease or injury over your lifetime.
  • On a single occasion, you should not drink more than 4 standard drinks – following this guideline will reduce your risk of injury and death on that occasion.

You can prepare yourself to make healthy choices and informed decisions about alcohol by understanding alcohol-related harm and ways to reduce it. No level of alcohol consumption can be considered safe for everyone, and regular consumption can have long term health effects. Learn more about the effects here.

If you have an unhealthy relationship with alcohol, seek Counselling advice here.

For a healthy mind

Because life can get stressful sometimes

As a student, you may have many competing demands in your day-to-day. You’ll be balancing study, work, financial, family and social commitments, all while adjusting to a new environment.

Learn to manage stress: Take regular breaks from study sessions, stay physically active, eat well and stay hydrated. Ask our Support team for help finding study methods that work best for you. You can also manage stress by managing your time well – be prepared and organised, attend all your classes, and start assignments early so they don’t become a source of anxiety.

Balance your commitments: It’s important that you have a life outside of study, including social, family and cultural connections. It can also involve spiritual fulfilment or part-time employment. Each of these areas of your life can provide a sense of belonging and purpose, which can go a long way toward reducing stress and improving your sense of confidence and self-worth.

Making connections: Deakin College can give you plenty of opportunities to make connections. Our ‘A day in the life ’ page is a great place to start. For a spiritual connection, you can always visit our Multifaith Chaplaincy. If you’re considering a part-time role while you study, check out our Working & Studying page for some valuable advice.

Get an early night: You won’t do your best work if you are too tired. Getting enough good quality sleep is vital to feeling and performing your best.

Some tips include:

  • Create a bedtime routine. Do the same things in the same order every night to signal to your body that it’s time for sleep. This includes going to bed at the same time every night!
  • Don’t study or work in bed. Your bedroom should be a peaceful space, clearly separate from any work or study zone.
  • Keep your sleep space quiet, dark and cool for the best quality sleep.
  • Take naps – but not too close to bedtime, and not for too long.
  • Avoid eating and avoid drinking caffeine too close to bedtime.
  • Avoid doing all-nighters if you can. You might think you are being productive, but trust us, it is counterintuitive!

If you struggle with any of the above, please get in touch with Deakin College Support or Counselling services. They are always there to help.

Creating a healthy space

A good study environment can make a world of difference

To succeed in your studies, it’s important to think carefully about your study space.

  • Is it a comfortable, quiet environment where you can concentrate?
  • Is it set up so that you can sit happily for long periods of time?
  • Does it have sources of natural light and enough airflow to be a comfortable temperature and provide you with fresh air?

A few small changes to your environment can support your happiness and wellbeing. This includes your living space. A health living space is one that is:

  • Free from clutter and mess
  • Well lit, with fresh air and natural light
  • Cleaned regularly to eliminate germs and household toxins
  • Decorated with things that bring you joy – whether it’s a family photo, artwork, or brightly coloured pillows and blankets

Plants and fresh flowers can bring a lot of life into a space. Some varieties can even help keep the air cleaner!

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