Being a student and eating well: the right formula

Justin Merle, 19-year-old chiropractic student, better known by his nickname

ONE refrigerator says a lot about its owner. But Brahim (who wished to remain anonymous), 20, a computer science student in Bordeaux, has little to declare. There’s butter, eggs, frozen pancakes (in the ice cube tray) and that’s it. Pasta and bread are added to these basic ingredients. The student fiddles with this ammo that is comforting plates but a bit greasy that he devours between two revisions on his desk of his textbooks. “Eating well is not a priority, he acknowledges. I watch it when I can afford it! »

The start of the new school year sounds the death knell for a balanced and regular diet for many students. A 2018 survey of 18,875 young French people enrolled at university by the Observatory of Student Life found that almost half of them (48%) skipped meals, mainly due to lack of time, wanting to cook or go shopping. Other obstacles are added: limited space for cooking, few utensils, limited budgets…

The ingredients for Justin Merle's recipe of the day: oatmeal and banana pancakes.

However, enthusiastic young gourmets are now giving tips on how to take control of their stomachs. Justin Merle is one of them. This 19-year-old chiropractic student is better known by the handle “justunfrenchie” on Instagram, where he has more than 110,000 followers with his recipes that put gluttony back at the heart of the bento. We imagined the influencer had a huge work schedule to prepare her little dishes…

After climbing the seven floors (no elevator) of his Parisian building, we find ourselves in a 12 square meter room, including a kitchen reduced to a minimum. “I don’t have that many tools: just a small microwave and an electric hobhe points out. But you just need to know how to use an accessory or two to enjoy yourself: I use my blender for smoothies, soups, sauces or even to prepare a quiche. And I manage to make bread or cakes with my steamer! »

Justin Merle started posting his recipes online as much to inspire his peers as to conquer his demons. “I was anorexic, and to regain control over my diet, I threw myself into the kitchen, he confides. Today, the young people who follow me open up a lot, talk to me about their own nutritional problems, their lack of motivation to cook when they leave their parents, I try to boost them at my level. »

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