Author Archives: Mackenzie Jo Pardi

Kids have 3x the amount of homework…what’s going on?

It seems like just yesterday I would come home from Elementary  school and my mom would ask her notorious question, “So what do you have for homework?” The question would soon follow with my mom sitting down with me and helping with my spelling and math homework. Possibly even a little bit of reading. But, other than my homework never consisted much more than an hour or so and as a preteen I definitely didn’t mind at all. However it seems these days schools and teachers are packing on the homework in insane amounts. My niece is only six and the amount of homework and activities she has during the week astonishes me when I think back to my life has a first grader. So I guess the real question that I’m proposing is does the amount of really benefit students or do we just think it does?

The article “Kids have three times too much homework, study finds; what’s the cost?” by Kelly Wallace discusses this issue. In the published study, The American Journal of Family Therapy they found students were getting more homework that is recommended by educational teachers. Three times as much to be exact.  According to the National Education Association and National Parent-Teacher association  homework should oblige by the “10 minute” rule aka 10 minutes per grade level.

A study conducted a questionnaire filled out by more than 1,100 students including both English and Spanish speaking parents of kids ranging from kindergarten to senior level teens. This research discovered that first graders were have three times the amount of homework than recommended  going against the “10 minute” rule standard. Parents reported their first graders were spending 28 minutes on homework  and second graders were spending an average of 29 minutes. Kindergarteners were spending an average of 25 minutes.

While I find these results to be both astounding and ridiculous that young children this study doesn’t prove anything or rule out any bias. While the questionnaire conducted is a cheap way to collected date and results from a large group, people could easily lie or exaggerate. Not to mention that questionnaires  can be very restrictive in their answers generally revolving around basic “yes” or “no” questions.

Stephanie Donaldson-Pressman, a contributing editor of the study and clinical director of the New England Center for Pediatric Psychology stated, “The data shows that homework over this level is not only not beneficial to children’s grades or GPA, but there’s really a plethora of evidence that it’s detrimental to their attitude about school, their grades, their self-confidence, their social skills and their quality of life.”

The article goes on to say that the impact of an extreme amount of homework on high school students increased their stress levels and various health problems such as users, migraines, sleep deprivation, and weight loss. While once again astounding findings, it’s hard to say the true impact of this without knowing the amount of people it affected and how it compared to those students who do get a balanced amount of homework.

Much of this study does in the fact that it didn’t take into account the lives of the families studied. The questionnaire benefitted taking an account in the social background families including their whether or not parents went to college. These types of questions would possibly help show a correlation in the fact the amount of homework isn’t the problem but rather the social background and family. Thus showing a corresponding variable may be an issue instead. However much of these questions are “closed questions” which are easy to convert in data but lack the ability for respondents to express their  true feelings  in their answers provided. “Open questions” would help provide more information and a closer look on the true impact of the time spent on homework. However, “open questions” tend to be more complex and take longer to apply the data to the experiment.

“The current study also examined the stress homework places on families and found that as the parent’s confidence in their ability to help their child with homework went down, the stress in the household went up,” Wallace stated. The impacts of fights and stressful environments were far more likely in households where parents didn’t have a college degree. Parents with college degrees tended to be more confident when it came to helping their children with their homework. Now that isn’t to say that parents who are uneducated lack the ability to help kids with their homework or cause a more stressful environment. It’s just one of many confounding variables that play apart in this debacle.

The article goes on to explain previous research that included a study in 2006 that found a link between homework and achievement but a stronger link during secondary school compared to elementary school. Research in 2012 find any link towards either homework and achievement. Much of this study struggles with the Texas sharpshooter issue. While many of these studies have similar findings and/or positive results, none of this studies can come up with an exact conclusion which makes it hard to reject the null hypothesis or accept the alternative hypothesis.

Homework is an important part of success in order to help kids review and understand the material but should be done so in a way that is benefitting them and not hurting them for future success.



Sooooo should we be scared of swans?


Swans, the elegant birds that have been seen throughout many of our classic fables and fairly tales have the potential to possibly have the ability to attack and drown us? Wait…what?

According to this article a man three years ago was charged and capsized the boat of a 37-year-old man named Anthony Hensely who subsequently drowned as a result of the attack.  And years prior another swan was attacking boats and flying into visiting families.

So should we starting getting scared?

According to Dr. Michael Brooke we shouldn’t be at all. With their wingspan up to 7.9 ft and their weight of 33 lbs, they might be large but they aren’t that scary. Swans pose no threat to actual adults. Our size alone could overbear them and the only true threat they pose are against young children and elders. Brooke states that swan aggression is a myth so we shouldn’t use their wingspan alone as an excuse to run away from them. Like any other animal in nature, swans attack or could potentially pose a threat when they feel they are being harmed which aggravates them.  “If you overstep the line they will make contact, and if you really push it they might take a bite – but they don’t attack people for the fun of it,” Brooke said.

According to Britannica, animals experience two forms of aggression; “Predatory or anti predatory aggression, in which animals prey upon or defend themselves from other animals of different species, and intraspecific aggression, in which animals attack members of their own species.” It is clearly evident that in some of the stories listed above regarding swan attacks pertain to predatory aggression due to the fact that the particular incident  felt threatening to them causing them to attack.

However, others have a quite different take on swans and impact of dangerous they could truly be. According to the article “Swan Lake Revisited: New York State Plans To Exterminate Mute Swans, Calling Them ‘Invasive Species’” by Palash Ghosh claims swans are an “prohibitive invasive species who pose a grave threat to humans, to other creatures and their habitats.” Ghosh explains that swans pose threats towards humans, destruction of aquatic vegetation, degradation of water quality and potential hazards to aviation. The destruction that they cause essentially leads to hurting the habitat for surrounding fish and damages the food chain. Swan feces also contain a high level of coliform bacteria which is a major threat to drinking, swimming, and shellfish fishing. Coliform bacteria is found in the intestinal tract of both humans and animals and when it comes in contact with fecal contamination could cause diarrhea and dysenteric symptoms.

The problems that swans have caused as well as the increase of population have started the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to begin thinking about killing some of these birds off. “The department temporarily plans to kill all of the estimated 2,200 mute swans in the state of New York by the year 2025.” Lethal control methods will include shooting them off, live captures, and euthanasia. While this may help eliminate attacks that have stemmed from aggression as well as help the aquatic habitat it still doesn’t stop the people who love swans to be devastated. However, DEC’s argument claims to be that they can’t ignore the negative impacts this bird as caused  just because of the sheer beauty of it.

While it seems cruel to kill off wildlife due to for the most part “rare attacks” in my opinion I also feel that we can’t risk such negative impacts of it either. While we do need to look out for our wildlife, we owe it to our society and species to keep safe living for us alive as well.



Could elephants hold the cure for the fight against cancer?

One would think that it’s the 21st century so somewhere along this technologically advanced generation somehow we would have reached a cure for cancer right? Or at least be pretty freakin close to one. But, yet we still have nothing. Nothing major enough to FINALLY end this death sentence for good and finally bring peace to many people who have been fighting this battle or lost ones to it.

Well, not SO fast…according to Faith Karimi’s article,Elephant genes hold clues for fight against cancer, scientists say,” we might be on the brink of something great. Apparently, elephants are mammals that destroy damaged cells before they become cancerous.  “The mammoth mammals rarely get cancer, which has long bewildered scientists considering elephants have 100 times as many cells as humans,” according to scientists in Karimi’s article.

Why though is the real question?

According to scientists elephants have extra genes that stop tumors from growing. They have at least 40 copies of genes that code for p53, a protein well known for the its cancer-inhibiting properties while us humans only have two copies. Thus making them less likely to get cancer and even more likely to be able to destroy before it becomes a threat to their livelihood. “Elephants may have a more robust mechanism for killing damaged cells that are at risk for becoming cancerous,” Karimi explained.

In order to test this scientists within this study extracted white blood cells from elephants , which are essential to the body from protecting against illness and disease. Once the white blood cells were extracted scientists damaged the cells. “This may be more effective of an approach to cancer prevention than trying to stop a mutated cell from dividing and not being able to completely repair itself,” Karimi stated.

While this study was indeed an experimental one due to the fact that white blood cells were manipulated and damaged by the scientists, it seems to lack some sort of control and randomized grouping. This experiment may be consistent with the hypothesis, however there isn’t enough evidence to reject the null or accept the alternative hypothesis. This experiment might have reaped more benefits if they had taken cells from both humans and elephants to see the  impact of p53 in both of them after the manipulation. It could be possible that using cells or other genes from elephants with cancer like cells in the human body could show a reduction in cancer. Or potentially lead us to the full impact of p53 at least.

They could even take it a step further by getting two groups separating them into healthy patients and cancer patients. Scientists could develop a way to inject more p53 in patients. Once the patients have received p53 they would be followed for a year to study the results. Scientists could compare the healthy patients and if they were less likely to get cancer due to the increase of p53 and if the cancer patients had an increase of survival due to the increase in p53 helping them fight it off. This would help better prove that the manipulation within the experiment caused the outcome and decreased the chances of error or bias.

Scientists are hopeful that this newfound discovery will bring some insight into the fight to end cancer. “It’s up to us to learn how different animals tackle the problem so we can adapt those strategies to prevent cancer in people,” Karimi wrote.

Who knows what this new discovery will bring but one step closer means one less step back in this continuing battle.

Behavior in Kindergarten linked to future success

   It sounds crazy, huh? The possibility of how we behave and interact with others during kindergarten could potentially predict the outcome of how successful we will be when we all grow up. According to” Study: Behavior in kindergarten linked to adult success,” by Kelly Wallace explained the results done on this exact study by The American Journal of Public Health.  A 20-year examination from kids in Kindergarten to their mid-twenties showed a link between their future success from their Kindergarten experiences.

To conduct this study, researches from Penn State University and Duke University looked at social competency skills which were evaluated in 1991 by the teachers. Teachers evaluated students based on, “factors such as whether they listened to others, shared materials, resolved problems with their peers and were helpful.” The skills were based on a scale of 0 to 4 which would mean 0 would lowest level of social skills and 4 being the highest and most positive level. According to Wallace with every point that a child increased made them more likely to obtain a college degree and 46% more likely to have a full time job by the age of 25. For every point that a child decreased on the scale of social skills Wallace explained that, “67% higher chance of having been arrested in early adulthood, a 52% higher rate of binge drinking and an 82% higher chance of being in or on a waiting list for public housing.”

Researchers found these findings to be surprising but not. They explain that they, “knew the importance of social and emotional competency in a child’s development, but didn’t quite expect to find as strong a correlation between those skills and a child’s long-term well-being, even with other variables factored out, such as a family’s socioeconomic status and the child’s academic ability.” This proves that while this experiment shows a correlation in social skills and future success, confunding variables can’t be ruled out. Social skills might be the difference to performance later in life but financial status and academic ability as well as disabilities and disorders could be a factor too.

As a result this study sparked the question of many parents wondering if their child scored low on the scale does that mean their child is at risk in the future? The answer was no. The researchers stated that, “Research greatly shows that these are the type of skills that are malleable, in fact much more malleable than say something like IQ or other things that are more likely traits that are more ingrained.” Essentially the skills that the children possess that make them successful are a result of reinforcement.

While results point to the fact that social skills play a role in success, this experiment is merely observational and can’t officially prove anything until they manipulate something. In my opinion I feel this experiment is due to chance and that kids that were very helpful and good listeners were successful by luck. But, more so by the influence of their families and peer groups. I was in Kindergarten twice due to the fact that my first year my social skills seemed to get in the way of learning and I was more concerned with making friends than what we were actually doing in class. However, my in second year of Kindergarten I excelled and did very well. If the experiment  is based on social skills then how is that they seemed to get in the way and cause a delay in my success? Shouldn’t my social skills have pushed me ahead of the rest? The experiment proves to be biased and suggests correlations that may not actually be there. Since there is no independent variable this study lacks the ability to full prove this correlational and rather just assumes that social skills are the cause of future success. With my example of my experiences in Kindergarten helps prove this bias.


Does lack of sleep cause Alzheimers disease?

According to Alzheimers disease is a common form of dementia and a type of dementia that, “causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior.” Symptoms usually worsen over time and eventually interfere with a person’s daily life. For me this disease hits home. My father’s mother passed away many years ago from Alzheimers disease and my grandfather just passed away from this same disease yesterday. It’s an awful disease and even more painful to watch the person you love slowly lose themselves without the ability to stop it. The most common early symptom of this disease is difficulty remembering newly learned information but are there other early symptoms we’re missing?

A study conducted by The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Health which was published in journal, JAMA Neurology discovered “reduced sleep and poor sleep quality may be linked to increased build-up of beta-amyloid plaques in the brains of older adults – a sign of Alzheimer’s disease. ” The research team conducted a study using 70 participants with a mean age of 76. All the participants were dementia free.

All participants were instructed to record their sleep patterns including how long they slept, how often they woke up through the night, if they had trouble falling asleep, and if they woke up earlier than they had planned. Their beta-amyloid deposition was measured using various brain imaging techniques. At the end of the study participants recored no more than 5 hours of sleep to more than 7 hours of sleep. The research team discovered an increase in beta-amyloid in those who had a shorter overall sleep compared to those who had longer night sleeps.

These result was shocking to me and honestly scared me a little. I often having trouble falling asleep which results in me having a shorter night sleep. Not to mention that I wake up frequently through the night. Does that make me at risk for Alzheimers disease later on in life?

The research team reported that, “the number of times a person woke during the night was not linked to an increase in beta-amyloid build-up.” This was a huge relief to me and made me feel better knowing that waking up throughout the night doesn’t have an effect on anything. However, researchers explained that many people who suffer from this disease report insomnia like symptoms. Further research on this would greatly benefit society.

A study done by Medical News Todayexplained that sleep helps detox the brain by flushing our waste products of neural activity. University of Rochester Medical Center and lead author, Dr. Maiken Nedergaard says, “This study shows that the brain has different functional states when asleep and when awake. In fact, the restorative nature of sleep appears to be the result of the active clearance of the by-products of neural activity that accumulate during wakefulness.”

However further studies need to be conducted in order to determine whether or not sleep slows or prevents Alzheimers disease.

While this study was very interesting, this study was observational meaning they can’t technically prove anything or that correlation means causation. While recording their sleep patterns helps gives researches an idea of how this could play a part in the increase of beta-amyloid build up, it doesn’t take in account other factors that could have played apart in the patterns being shown. Participants could have been sick during the trial, where or who they were sleeping with could have caused an effect, or they could have incorrectly recorded their results.

Since no one nows for sure the full impact of sleep in correlation with Alzheimers disease the study can’t officially rule out reverse causation. Could Alzheimers disease cause lack of sleep? Earlier in the blog researchers did explain that people with this disease reported insomnia like symptoms. Because of this the study can’t rule out confunding variables either.

This study would have had better results if they had conducted in experiment with both dementia patients and regular, healthy patients. Participants could record their results and researches could compare the difference in sleep between both groups. Researches could get a better understanding of the impact and also compare the beta-amyloid buildup using the brain imaging techniques they used earlier in their study.  This in turn would help show if Alzheimers disease already has an overabundance of beta amyloid build compared to the healthy participants. While dementia patients may cause a response bias with possibly not remembering to record/record all their results completely I think it would better explain the sleep phenomenon on this highly increasing disease.



Is there a new drug to cure UC?

There are my factors that go into Ulcerative Colitis in which people can develop it. Some believe it’s simply by chance, others think environmental factors play role, or it’s genetic. The genetic factor however is a very touchy theory that many believe not to be true. When I was diagnosed over a year ago I went from being fine to a full blown flare experiencing the type of pain you would never think was physically possible. Quickly after I was put on an oral medication and a biologic known as Remicade and have been heading into remission ever since. (Knock on Wood).

While there are several medicines out there for patients to help them reach remission, everyone and their bodies have different ways of responding. What may work for someone may not for another because it is difficult to treat and standard therapy can be ineffective. However, a new study led by researchers from the Farncombe Family Digestive Health Research Institute at McMaster University show that transplanting fecal matter may be a useful solution in the fght against UC. According to the article by McMaster University “Two new studies show that fecal transplantation may help fight against ulcerative colitis” which explains the use of fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) and the impact it has on patients. Essentially it “involves transplanting gut fecal bacteria from healthy people into patients with UC.”

A study led by Elena Verdu, an associate professor of medicine with the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine found that a certain gut bacterial helps control UC. In order to test this theory she conducted an experiment using rats to show that certain bacterias are important to prevent our colon from inflammation and injury. At the same time professor of medicine Paul Moayyedi and his team, “explored the safety and efficacy of FMT by conducting a placebo-controlled, randomized trial.” This helped them discover that much of their findings for similar to Verdu in which FMT induces remission among patients.

The experiment took on the experimental approach by separating two groups of mice. One group was given bacteria was patients with severe UC and the other group was given bacteria from the healthy donor. The first results Verdu noticed was, “The results identified a reduced amount of the bacterial families that are important for gut health in the feces of patients with severe colitis.” This also led to the finding that when mice were exposed to toxins that could potentially cause injury to the gut inflammation was higher in the mice that were given the UC bacteria versus the mice with the donor bacteria.

Moayyedi conducted another experiment, however this time on humans. He conducted an experiment consisting of 75 patients with a UC fare separating them once again into two randomized groups with a placebo control.  One group was given an enema from an anonymous healthy donor once every week for six weeks while the control group received a water enema for the same allotted time. “They found 24 per cent were in remission in the fecal transplant group compared to five per cent in the placebo group,”  according to McMaster University.

While much of these results are promising it leaves me to wonder the ages and sexes of those experimented on? Ulcerative Colitis is a difficult to treat and is nowadays very prevalent with people in their early to late twenties. If only one age group or sex was used it could potentially make for a different experiment and results. Younger patients could respond better to this sort of treatment or vice versus. Not to mention that inducing enemas into patients with UC could potentially increase their chances of a flare or even make it worse causing a confunding variable in this experiment. UC is a tricky disease and while 24 percent were in remission after this experiment there’s not guarantee that patients will remain in remission. I think the experiment would benefit from doing further looks into 6 months to a year and see where these patients are after they receive from the healthy donor to get a better sense of the long term affects.






Why do we yawn?

Whether it’s from pure tiredness to boredom to simply just because the other person next to you yawned, yawning is an uncontrollable urge we’re overcome with on a daily basis. But have you ever wonder exactly why we do it? I mean honestly why is it that we feel the compelled need to open our mouths wide and let out a bunch of air making ourselves look as unattractive as possible? It’s a very strange thing us humans do. According to Janet Fang who wrote Why do we yawn? explains that yawning is linked to thermoregulation aka yawning cools the brain down. Fang writes, “Sleep cycles, cortical arousal, and stress are all associated with fluctuations in brain temperature.” Fang describes a study that did a study on both rats and humans. In these studies it showed when either the rat or human yawned there was an increase in brain temperature but followed by a decrease in temperature afterwards. To find this so called “thermal window” Jorg Massen from University of Vienna and  Andrew Gallup of SUNY Oneonta  measured the frequency of 120 yawns of random pedestrians walking the streets of Vienna, Austria during the winter (1.4 degrees celsius) and the summer (19.4 degrees celsius).  Gallup and Massen also look at 18 people and recored if and how many times they yawned during the experiment they were conducting. “There were also questions about sex, age, how long they’ve been outdoors, and how much they slept; some of these factors have been correlated to yawning in previous studies,” explains Fang.  Gallup and Massen viewed their results once they completed their experiment. “The difference between self-reported yawning in the two seasons was noticeable: 18.3 percent of participants yawned in the winter, while 41.7 percent reported yawning in the summer,” says Fang. However, Gallup and Massen compared their results to a similar study done in in Tucso, Arizona and their results were the complete opposite. So what exactly does this meant then? It seems that neither seasons nor the amount of daylight hours played a part in yawning but rather contagious yawning is the main culprit of the “thermal zone.” People were more likely to yawn at temperatures ranging around 20 degrees celsius. According to Matthew Campbell, a researcher at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center at Emory University explains on Smithsonian Mag that “When we see someone smile or frown, we imitate them to feel happiness or sadness. We catch yawns for the same reasons—we see a yawn, so we yawn. It isn’t a deliberate attempt to empathize with you. It’s just a byproduct of how our bodies and brains work,” Campbell says.Smithsonian Mag says that 60 to 70 percent of yawns are contagious to people. The magazine even says “If people see photos or footage of or read about yawning, the majority will spontaneously do the same.” Pretty crazy stuff, huh? Steven Platek, a psychology professor at Georgia Gwinnett College did a study on it and reported, “The phenomenon occurs most often in individuals who score high on measures of empathic understanding. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans, he found that areas of the brain activated during contagious yawning, the posterior cingulate and precuneus, are involved in processing the our own and others’ emotions.” It seems that yawning is a thing that we’ll never be able to escape and our own body’s reaction other humans to stay connected and possibly even a phenomenon we’ll never be able to fully understand. 




Is coffee good for you?

We all know that there’s nothing like a hot, steaming cup of coffee in the morning to energize and wake you up for the long day ahead of you. But, studies have recently show that coffee might do more than just the extra jolt you feel after having a cup.  Popular Science explains the seven reasons why coffee is REALLY good for you. Believe it or not coffee actually might make you smarter. Kris Gunnars, author of “7 Reasons Why Coffee Is good For You” explains that caffeine blocks effects of an inhibitory neurotransmitter called Adenosine. As of result of this Kris Gunnars states, “By blocking the inhibitory effects of Adenosine, caffeine actually increases neuronal firing in the brain and the release of other neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine.” As a result this increases memory, reaction time, and general cognitive function. He also states, ” Controlled trials show that caffeine improves both mood and brain function.” The second reason that coffee works wonders for us is it helps raise metabolism and increases the oxidation of fatty acids. Gunnars goes on to say that, “Caffeine raises the metabolic rate and helps to mobilize fatty acids from the fat tissues. It can also enhance physical performance.” Meta-anyalses have helped prove these findings. The third reason that coffee is good for us is that is helps lowers our risk for Type II Diabetes.  “In observational studies, coffee has been repeatedly associated with a lower risk of diabetes. The reduction in risk ranges from 23% all the way up to 67%,” Gunnar says. Gunnar continues with belief saying, “up of coffee per day lowered the risk of diabetes by 7%. The more coffee people drank, the lower their risk.” The fourth reason coffee is good for you is it lowers to chances of getting Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease which is become common among older individuals. The fifth reason is good for you is that it might actually be good for your liver. We all known that our liver is very sensitive and vulnerable to alcohol consumption. If too much alcohol is consumed you can develop Cirrhosis. But, if you drink coffee it has shown to lower the effects of Cirrhosis. “Coffee can lower the risk of cirrhosis by as much as 80%, the strongest effect for those who drank 4 or more cups per day,” Gunnar says. Pretty cool, huh? The sixth reason coffee is good for us is it lowers our chances of dying since it’s so many deaths in America are tied to Type II Diabetes. The last and final reason coffee is good for us is it is packed with vitamins and minerals. Not to mention antioxidants as well. To name a few like B1, B2, B3, B5, etc. Now while there are several reasons why coffee is good for you that isn’t to say that people should be consuming too much either. Just like everything, everything is good for us in moderation. By keeping your consumption down to just one cup a day you’re doing plenty for your body and mind! So next time you need an extra jolt, remember that not only will you feel more energized but you’ll be reaping more benefits from it as well!

Here comes the “Drunchies”

We’ve all been there. We have a good dinner. We get ready. Pregame with our friends and head to the bars. After a long, hard night of drinking and throwing back all those shots we’re overcome with this vivacious appetite. A hot slice of pepperoni pizza sounds like heaven or maybe an order of pokey sticks to hit the spot. Or what about some hot wings and to pair with that some waffle fries? The cravings never stop. Yes, people I’m talking about the “drunchies.” Now what exactly is the “drunchies?”According to Her Campus the drunchies best refers to the large, mindless consumption of mood which is usually unhealthy and in large portions. Drinking takes away our ability to make proper decisions so it’s not wonder we eat the way we do because we don’t really know what we’re fully doing. According to Dr. Jennifer Wider she explains on Her Campus that they’re are several theories as to why we drunk eat. The number one reason why we drunk eat according to Dutch researchers is that they found that,” It actually takes people longer to feel full when they drank alcohol… that their bodies didn’t recognize the alcohol calories as much as calories from other sources like protein.” This theory would explain whole lot considering the fact that I can usually eat for a family of 12 when I’m drunk. The second theory behind drunchies, Dr. Ria Gilday and author of Healthy Weight Loss: Easy, Fast, Safe explains that since alcohol is technically sugar which causes it to be absorbed into our bloodstream spiking our insulin. When our insulin is spiked our, our blood sugar levels drop causing to crave even more sugar and fats which in turn exacerbate the entire situation. Dr Ria Gilday further explains,” We mainly crave carbohydrates when drunk is because “those are the foods that will provide fast relief of the symptoms associated with low blood glucose levels.”

Due to the fact that drinking enhances our production of salt that’s why food, especially the unhealthy kinds always taste better when we’re drunk versus sober. Now while this may be a true statement about how delicious food tastes late night, drunk eating has is disadvantages  as well. The more calories=more weight gain. To metabolize alcohol you need a huge amount of vitamins and minerals so the only thing your body can do is store it as fat Alcohol has enough calories by itself so avoiding the only late night drunchies is most preferred. We can prevent this from happening though by being very cautious and putting in a concentrated effort before grabbing our phone to order Canyon Pizza. Dr. Ria has to drink a lot of water before and after you consume alcohol to dilute the blood concentration of alcohol. So next time you’re back from a late night remember to down the water so you can avoid the the notorious question in the morning, “Did I drunk eat? Please say no.”


Why Science thinks finding our soulmate is impossible….so we’re all screwed.

Even though we’re all still so young, we all can’t help but wonder what it’ll be like when we find our soulmate because lets face it…it’s pretty hard thing to do. And science knows it too. In a world with over seven billion people is it really possible that we’re going to find the one person made just for us? According too Bustle Randall Munroe explains that after doing much research on this topic we better hope that fate bring us together because the chances of us finding them is slim to none. Generally speaking, this so called “soulmate” of ours is set at birth and when we do finally find them our eyes we’ll meet and we’ll just know. Soulmates are a love at first sight kind of thing. But, realistically how many people do we make eye contact with on a regular basis? A lot. I stare at people all the time. When I’m on my way to class. When I’m standing in line to get coffee. When I’m working out at the gym. It’s a daily occurrence and I’m pretty sure 90% of those people are definitely not my soulmate so once again that leads us right back to where we started. Not mention the fact that our soulmate could have been from the past or not even alive anymore at this point. According to Framing love: When it hurts to think we’re made for each other believes that not being with our soulmate is is actually a good thing. A study separating people into groups that believe love is a “journey” and then those who believed it’s “mandated destiny.” Both groups had to write two good memories and two bad memories about their current relationships. Those in the “journey” group had more positive responses than those who believed that love is conditioned to finding your soulmate.  New York Magazine’s “Science of Us” blog explains that those who are believed that they are made for each other actually have more problems and could in for a rude awakening when a sign of trouble threatens this belief. So where does this leave us then? Should we give up and believe that we are doomed from ever experiencing this kind of love? It’s safe to say we can rest easy because love is inevitable. Regardless if they’re our soulmate or not love is a pretty great thing when it happens

Blog 1: Why can’t they cure Ulcerative Colitis?

Over a year ago I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. Ulcerative Colitis is a chronic inflammatory disease in the gastrointestinal tract.  After grueling amounts of pain and being anemic, several tests later I got my answer to my agony. If anyone who knows what Crohn’s is or   what it’s like you probably know it’s a type of pain that you never thought it was possible to experience. The stabbing pain. The million trips to the bathroom. Not to mention the inability to eat pretty much anything since everything upsets your stomach. So one would think getting my the answer I had been seeking for so long would finally bring me peace right? No. Ulcerative Colitis is one of many diseases they still don’t have the answers to or what it even occurs. They have medication and different remedies that help keep you from flaring but nothing is for sure or permanent. I’ve been taking over the counter medication and getting infusions every six weeks to continue in remission but there’s no guarantee. The problem with Colitis disease is that many genetic and environmental factors contribute to it according to Healthline which make it hard to pinpoint the direct cause. Luckily, WNDU reported that Naser seems to have recently discovered the bacteria MAP that could possibly linked to the symptoms Colitis patients experience. This bacteria has been known for awhile but is only found in cows. This bacteria helps with the inflammation and could possibly lead to a cure. Scientists continue trials in order to publish their findings hoping to bring an end to this disease. They’ve even discovered stem cells called mesenchymal stem cell which contain antibodies which go to straight to the intestinal lining to promote healing and decrease inflammation reported by Everyday Health.  However, I think the biggest problem surrounding the inability to cure this disease is that not many people are familiar with it. Many commercials surrounding IBS center around Crohn’s disease but rarely ever mention Ulcerative Colitis. Discovering a cure for something requires the desire and knowledge to want to end something. If not enough people know of Colitis and see it as it’s own disease then how is it ever going to be cured? Being someone who suffers from this disease it is both frustrating and upsetting that such a disease can be disregarded and be made to seem less serious due to the fact that it falls under the same category as Crohn’s. In the future, I can only hope that scientists continue to make great strides for Ulcerative Colitis. Hopefully one day I can live completely symptom free where certain foods and frequent trips to the bathroom don’t run my life.  

Initial Blog Post_PardiMackenzie

Hi everyone! My names Mackenzie Pardi! I’m junior majoring in Broadcast Journalism with a minor in Human Growth & Development. I just transferred here and I already love it so much. I originally started my freshman year at the University of Alabama and didn’t get the experience I was hoping for. Unfortunately, I ended up transferring home. Luckily, though I ended up transferring to Altoona with my best friend and roommate from Alabama before coming to UP. Needless to say it’s has been a crazy two years but four campuses later I’m finally feel like I’m where I belong. I decided to take SC 200 because my advisor raved about this class and our teacher! Since I only need 3.00 credits of a science I decided I had to take this class and see what all the fuss was about. I can’t wait to see what this semester has in store! 🙂

I recently got an internship at B94.5 and couldn’t be more excited at the first stepping in my career! stay tuned maybe you’ll hear me on the radio 🙂