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Do multivitamins actually work?

I would like to consider myself a healthy individual with good eating & exercise habits. A habit I also include in my daily routine is taking a multivitamin. Since I was in elementary school, I heard how important it is to “take your vitamins”. In 2010, over 110 million Americans spent over 28 billion dollars on supplements & multivitamins. However, is taking a multivitamin as beneficial as we think it is? 

Many people believe that taking a multivitamin will make up for the nutrition they miss out on due to their eating habits. Also, people are will to pay top dollar for these multivitamins.An article published in the Huffington Post talks about the issue & has answers. according to The U.S. Preventive Services task force, taking a multivitamin is neither advised or not recommended in order to prevent cancer. Also, that taking the top of the line multivitamin is unnecessary, and that the average, basic brand will work the same. 
I’m sure there are plenty of questions still to be answered about the exact effects of a daily multivitamin. It makes you wonder though, “What exactly am I putting into my body when I take these things?”

Is coffee drinking regularly good or bad?

It is a habit that millions of Americans are committed to every day. In fact, some people claim that they need coffee to function on a daily basis. I even quote one of my friends on social network saying “don’t consider me useful to society until I have coffee.” Personally, I do not find myself needing coffee to function daily. However, there are people who drink up to 6 or more cups of coffee today. That makes you ask, “Is drinking coffee good or bad for your health?”

Coffee is actually a very unique drink, that consist of hundreds of different compounds. With so many compounds, it is difficult to say if it is good or bad for you. Some of these compounds can be beneficial to your health, while others can be not so beneficial. Some research over the year has shown that coffee drinking is beneficial. Some of the benefits may include protection against diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, & liver disease. However, in order to be confirmed, these results will need to be studies further. If coffee is affecting your sleeping patterns or emotions, chances are you are consuming too much of it. Also, the article states that research is typically based on a typical 8-ounce cup of with little or no milk or sugar. If you are loading your coffee with a lot of sugar & cream, that could add to your daily calorie intake, which could eventually lead to gaining weight. 
Good news for coffee drinkers, a study conducted by Harvard found that there was no relationship between coffee drinking and increased death risk.
Therefore, coffee can definitely have its pros & cons like anything else we put in our body. It is my no means urgent to stop, or start, coffee consumption immediately in order to be healthy.

Is cramming for a test actually affective?

“I will just study the night before and i’ll be fine.” Being a busy college student, I am 100 percent guilty of cramming for an exam. Sitting at my laptop from night time up until the time of the exam the next day. At times it has worked for me, and other times, not so well. It made me wonder, is there a science behind whether or not cramming for an exam is actually affective. A new research conducted at UCLA sums up to answer in a few words, “don’t bother.”

Yes, you may think that you are being extremely productive studying all those consecutive hours. However, when all is said and done, you are actually being counterproductive. When a student sacrifices valuable sleep time in order to binge study, they are more likely to be like productive academically the next day. Andrew J. Fuligni, the senior author of the study, states that a proper amount of sleep is equally important for academic success. The most efficient way to study is to abide a schedule. 
Although it sounds extremely difficult considering we all live busy lives, it is important that we make room for adequate sleep and study time. Will I ever pull an all-nighter cramming for an exam again? I would be lying to you if I said “no”. However, it is very eye opening on how counterproductive cramming for exams can be.

Is exercising too much unhealthy?

I am by no means a gym rat. I do try to make it a point of emphasis to make it to the gym 5 to 6 times a week. However, if I have something more important to take care of, I am willing to sacrifice my fitness time. Many people believe that spending countless hours in the gym is the key to being healthy. Is that actually as healthy as people think it is? New studies reviled that too much time in the gym can be just as unhealthy as not working out at all. 

The research suggested that teens who over do it in the fitness centers are as vulnerable to low self-esteem and stress as those who do not make exercising a priority at all. This is not suggestion that regular exercise is not a good thing. In fact, regular exercise has many positive traits. These include positive impacts on mental & physical health. The research, which was published in the British Medical journal, examines more thank 1,2000 16 to 20 year-olds. They found that teens who exercised 14 hours a week had the greatest physical & mental health benefits (14 hours a week is twice the recommended). It was the teens who did 17.5 and above hours of exercise a week who saw the negative affects. The study found that only 5 percent of the teens examined fell under this category. 
Therefore, it is important for you to get regular exercise. However, don’t over work yourself. Us college students have enough stuff to stress about on a daily basis. The last think we need is something as enjoyable as a good workout to stress us out!

How much sleep is too much sleep?

Once the weekend hits, there is absolutely nothing better than sleeping your days away after a busy week. It can’t be that bad right? I’m sure we have all been told that sleep is very important for our health and well being. According to the article on , the average human being sleep 33% of their life. The question that arises now, “exactly how much sleep is too much sleep?”

The verdict that has been reached is that too much sleep can be bad for your health. Many factors go into how much sleep an individual needs. Your current age, health & level of activity throughout the day contribute to how much sleep you actually need. There is times in our lives when our body needs more than the average 7 to 9 hours of recommended sleep. For example, if someone is recovering from being sick, their body may require more rest time. However, oversleeping has been associated with some serious health issues. These health issues include kidney & liver disease, depression & dementia. 
Moral of the story, like anything else, sleep is good, but can also be bad if over done. Just because you can stay up really late & also sleep in really late, doesn’t make it is a good thing to regularly do. Think about this next time you are thinking about hitting that snooze button for a couple of extra hours on the weekend.

Sweet & simple – walking.

As college students, we find ourselves busy with trying to get school work done & keep up with our social lives, all while trying to maintain a healthy sleep & exercise routine. Sounds impossible, right? Sometimes you will find yourself picking & choosing which to do on a daily basis. However, there is a simple thing you could be doing daily that has substantial health benefits – walking. Yes, walking is one of the most effective exercises. 

Walking is very simple, yet very good for your heart & lungs. Dr Craig Williams believes that “It is good for bones & improves the body’s cardiovascular system”. Also, because walking is a low intensity cardiovascular exercise, it does not present a high risk for injury. Believe it or not, walking is better for the spinal discs than running, since it puts less pressure on it. Of course you also need to maintain a healthy diet & other exercise routines in order for the benefits of walking to be 100% affective.  
It’s hard to believe that something as simple as walking can have so many benefits. It is said that we are recommended to get 30 minutes of exercise daily. If you walk regularly, you should have no problem meeting the minimum requirement. Just think about how much us Penn Staters walk every day. Next time you can’t make it to the gym due to school work or whatever else, just remember that walking can be a healthy & beneficial alternative.