Influence of gender on body mass index (BMI), eating habits and exercise frequency are evaluated in students attending a private university in Istanbul, Turkey. Males had a significantly higher mean BMI value. Among male students, 27.89% were overweight, and 6.11% were obese, while only 2.63% of females were overweight, and 0.87% were obese.Significantly higher percentage of females than males were underweight (23.70% versus 0.56%, respectively). Male students ate more in a typical day. Breakfast was the most often skipped meal for both genders. Females preferred to consume fruits and vegetables, whereas males preferred more meat and bread. Although the frequencies were significantly different, dairy consumption was low, and fast food and soda consumptions were high for both genders. The majority of university students were insufficiently active. Females were physically less active compared to males.