Author Archives: Ryan Gregory Blank

Got Milk? Nope, Don’t Need It


My roommate and I got in a heated argument earlier this week whether or not a young adult still needs to be drinking milk in order to stay healthy. His argument was that milk still offers important nutrients, calcium specifically, that is still needed to support the bone structure of an adult. I argued that because we are no longer growing, it is not necessary.

When I Google searched “do adults need milk”, I was overwhelmed with the amount of articles claiming that the claim “milk is the key to healthy bones” is false. In fact, many of the articles argued that milk can be more harmful to your body rather than beneficial. In Vivian Goldschmidt’s article, Debunking The Milk Mythshe claims that “the calcium from milk pulls the milk from your bones in order to level out the calcium in your digestive system”. Obviously calcium being removed from your bones is not an ideal transaction to be taking place.


I didn’t stop there with my research on whether or not adult need milk in their diet. In another article that I discovered while trying to gather more information on this topic, I discovered milk harms your body in other ways other than pulling calcium from your bones. Milk is one of the biggest sources of saturated fats. Because there is so much saturated fat in dairy products and milk, there has been a link discovered connecting Type 1 Diabetes and dairy. Type 1 Diabetes is a disease where your immune system attacks its own pancreas.

Because of the overwhelming amount of data I found arguing against drinking milk, I think it is safe to say that I won the argument. Of course, my roommate, much like family doctors and the government, refuse to accept the arguments against milk even though they are in abundance


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Many people see Gatorade commercials of the top athletes in the world competing and high levels and being dominant in their sport. In every advertisement, they make it seem as though the only difference between your performance level and theirs is that they drink Gatorade.jordan Here is an example of a typical commercial.  We obviously know that if you drink Gatorade you can not automatically perform at the same level as some of the top athletes in the world, but does Gatorade actually help your body while working out or playing sports?

Gatorades claim to fame is that the drink helps replenish electrolytes. Electrolytes are sodium, potassium, calcium, bicarbonate and phosphate. The reason gatorade hydrates you so quickly is because water is attracted to electrolytes so when the electrolytes enter your body and go through your digestive system at fast rate, the water follows and rehydrates you. Also, your body uses up electrolytes when you’re working out or putting your muscles through strenuous activity.

Sodium is the main reason doctor’s believe drinking energy drinks during intense workouts is better than water. According to New York Giants and Knick’s team nutritionist Heidi Skolnik, “sodium holds helps hold onto water and get fluid to the right places in your body, muscles and blood.”

Now that we understand what electrolytes are and how they rehydrate your body while it is going through physical activity, we must know if you are doing enough physical activity to find it necessary to drink gatorade.

cartoon-weight-lifterA twenty fluid ounce gatorade contains 150 calories. Burning off 150 calories is equivalent to running eight miles per hour for ten minutes. So it is evident that if your goal is to lose weight, drinking Gatorade is not a wise decision if you are only running barely over a mile. According to, “if you are doing a work out of 45 minutes or less, water throughout the workout and after will keep you hydrated perfectly.”

In conclusion, unless you are doing an intense workout or in desperate need of quick rehydration, sticking with nature’s beverage is probably your best bet.


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Headphones and Homework Aren’t Such a Great Couple

coverEver since I got to college, I constantly find myself picking up my headphones on my way out of my room to do school work or to study. The two reasons I do this is because I get distracted easily and music soothes my mind when I am stressed about school.

Many of you may think that music is distracting while doing school work, but personally I believe the bathroom air hand dryer going off next to my floor’s study room to be a professional at breaking my focus. Also, trying to do work in the commons and being able to hear other people talk is something I am not very fond of.

Everyone has different kinds of music for different situations. Whether it be trying to amp yourself up before a sports game or listening to sad music after a break-up, there always seems to be music that can fit any situation you are currently in. While I am trying to crank out my school work, I prefer to listen to hip hop. Not hip hop music with heavy bass and screaming rappers, hip hop music with mellow, relaxing beats. This form of music is what I believe to be perfect for trying to get school work done.

Now into the research of how music effects school work. Through the numerous number of studies a read on this particular topic, all had two underlying themes: music effects your short term memory and that listening to music is still multi-tasking (which is very bad). Many trails following a format of having a group of people try memorize something in quiet versus with music playing show that the group that had the music playing in the background do worse. multitasking_93455Also, even though you may not realize this, music is multi-tasking. Listening to music requires your brain to be spending much needed energy on deciphering vibrations into music. Thus, whenever you are making your body do any kind of multi-tasking, you will not perform at as high of a level.

Even though music does slightly effect your cognitive learning skills and is considered multi-tasking, I will continue to take that loss and throw on my noise cancellation Beats as I bang out all my school work.


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Spinach or Romaine?

For all those salad lovers out there, I am going to try to help you make that decision between spinach or romaine when you roll up to the Findlay Commons to get a salad. Personally, I love to switch things off but I would like to know the benefits that each of these salad greens brings to the table.


spinach-fbOne way to compare these two is by the vitamin benefits each of these gives you. Spinach is a phenomenal source of vitamin k. Vitamin k is known to help blood clotting building strong bones, and preventing heart disease. Spinach is also very high in vitamin a. Vitamin A is very beneficial to your body when it comes to having healthy vision, bone growth, and a well-functioning immune system. Spinach also has an abundance of manganese, folate, and magnesium. Manganese is helps you have a strong bone structure and bone metabolism. Folate plays a large part in DNA synthesis and repair. Magnesium offers high energy, help with the digestive system, muscle aches and spasms, and regulates calcium, potassium, and sodium. These are just the five most abundant sources of nutrients in spinach.

romaine-lettuce1Now lets look into the the nutrients gained from romaine lettuce. Of the top five most abundant nutrients in romaine lettuce, it shares vitamin k, vitamin a, and folate with spinach. The only difference, romaine does not have amount as spinach. The other nutrients that are found in romaine lettuce are molybdenum and fiber. The purpose of molybdenum is to help break down amino acids and fiber lowers cholesterol, helps regulate bowel movements, and keeps blood sugar at a healthy level.

Both spinach and romaine contain the nutrients that your body needs and helps keep you healthy, but that does not tell us which is more beneficial for your body. According to the Chicago Tribune and Heather Mangieri (spokesperson for American Dietetic Association, “the darker the green, the more nutrient packed it is”. Thus, giving the title of the more nutritious salad base to spinach.

Although spinach may be the more nutritious of the two, I personally find romaine to be the more tasty. Both greatly benefit your body in very similar ways and I would take either of a slice of the terribly greasy pizza alternative offered in the Findlay dining commons.



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9 Incredible Health Benefits of Folate

Pretty In Pink

Recently, I discovered that one of our Big Ten Rivals, the Iowa Hawkeyes, has their away football locker room painted completely pink. Intrigued by this, I wanted to deeper research to discover how the color of the environment around you affects how your mood or energy level reacts.


Iowa first painted their locker room pink in 1979. Since then, it has been an icon for Iowa football.

According to, the color pink represents compassion, nurturing, and love. When an athlete is trying to get pumped up for a football game, being compassionate, nurturing, and loving is the last thing these athletes want to be. In a room, that is so overwhelmingly pink, it is hard to not let these phycological tricks get to you. If I were an athlete preparing for a game in this locker room, I couldn’t help to just laugh. The entire thing is so comical, but it actually works. Also, the color pink alleviates feelings of anger and resentment, two things every football player should have when playing another team.

To find out whether or not Iowa’s win record was overwhelmingly better at home compared to away, I went through every season since the locker room was painted and counted the wins and losses when playing at home, and the wins and losses when playing away.

Out of 452 games played since 1979, the Hawkeyes overall record is 274 wins and 178 losses. Of those wins and losses, 156 wins and 78 loss were at home. That leaves 118 wins and 100 losses were away. The Iowa Hawkeyes have a win percentage of 66.7% at home and a 54.1% win percentage while away. This is over a 10% win percentage difference from playing their football games in their home stadium versus playing their football game at an away stadium.

Although the win percentage is so much better at home than away, there are other variables that need to be considered. It is a well known fact that teams always play better in front of their home crowds than away, so this could be a large factor that influences win percentage other than the pink locker room. According to Sports Algorithm Research, home college football teams win 59.97% of the time and away teams win 40.03%. Thus, Iowa’s win percentage is roughly 6% better at home than other division one college sports teams. Another variable that must be considered is the quality of talent of the Iowa Hawkeyes football players versus their opponents. If the quality of athletes is much better for the Hawkeyes, that will have a huge impact of who will win the game regardless of color of locker room or where the game is taking place.



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Is Science an Instrument?

Hello Science 200, I am Ryan Blank from Orange County, CA. I am currently in DUS but plan on being a corporate innovation and entrepreneurship major with a minor in computer engineering. My ideal occupation is owning an app/computer based company so science won’t necessarily be a big part in my future.

The reason I chose this class is because I heard you don’t need to be a science all-star to get a good grade, and I’m very intrigued with the science that revolves around our everyday lives.

Growing up, I always thought I wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon. Then I took biology my freshman year of high school and found that science bores me (at least biology). It was by no means the teacher’s fault. She was one of my favorite teachers throughout high school, but it just wasn’t my cup of tea. Then I took chemistry and realized that any science that had math involved was possibly the worse thing I could get myself into. My teacher was terrible and I did not understand it all.chem meme

After chemistry I took environmental science and was very interested with the course material, but could not find myself enjoying a life as an environmental scientist. I then moved on to physics purely because I heard it was easy and it turns out it was. I know many of you will read that statement and think I’m crazy but it was my teacher’s first year of teaching and “dumbed down” the class incredibly. So throughout my science life, I have realized that science is just not who I am and that is why I do not plan on being a science major.

P.S. the title of my blog is referencing Patrick Star when he says “is mayonnaise an instrument?”