Fact or Fiction: Is the freshman 15 real?

Most high school seniors have been warned about the "freshman 15"--the extra pounds they'll allegedly pack on after a year in the dorms, eating mostly buffet-style on a meal plan. But scientists at Texas A&M International University in Laredo found that although first-year dorm residents consumed significantly more calories and sugar than students who lived off campus, neither they nor their counterparts gained weight over the course of the year.

The researchers studied 43 first-year female students at their university during the 2006-7 school year, monitoring their subjects' food consumption, physical activity levels, BMI and weight for year. Despite consuming more calories and sugar than off-campus students who weren't on the school's meal plan, the dorm residents also exercised more, perhaps because they were closer to campus facilities, and walked from the dorms to class instead of commuting by car, researchers said.

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