Sunday, March 27, 2016

Is Listening to Music Good When Studying?

It isn't uncommon to find a student listen to music when studying. Teenagers often find listening to music because of their own personal motives, like distracting themselves from the world. 

But is listening to music really good when studying? This article states that listening to music when studying does nothing when you're trying to study. The reason is that your brain is already spending energy processing and analyzing the music, there probably won't be enough energy to analyze and process the work you're trying to study. I choose this article because I knew we already studied a bit in health about how the brain processes things, and that I normally do listen to music when I study because I get bored when I study and want to listen to somewhat interesting things other than the things I'm trying to study.

Why do teens normally listen to music when they study? What type of music do you listen to when you study? Will you try not listening to music a couple of nights of studying and see if music affects the way you think?

Binaural Beat Technology (Article)

Whether we like it or not finals are creeping up on us and as it gets closer and closer some of us need a way to manage our stress and anxiety. Binaural Beat Technology (BBT), something that was used as a tool to reduce stress during the 70's and 80's is making a comeback and is worth testing. BBT is a method in which two similar tones are played in opposite ears to make one new tone and match brain wave frequencies to make changes or adjustments in the strongest brain wave states. Doing BBT can counter affects like insomnia and headaches, help you reach a deep meditative trance or influence lucid dreaming, or even reduce stress levels, however there are many uses to BBT.

This article intrigued me as my father has put it into practice and can vouch for it's effectiveness. Taking that into account I wanted to delve deeper and research the possible capabilities of it and thus, share it. I would recommend reading the article if it interests you as I will also be giving it a shot.

Would you consider trying BBT? Have you already tried BBT? What did you think of it if you have?

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Stay Healthy and Safe this Spring Break!

Since spring break is coming up, here is an article all about staying safe while you travel! In this article, you can read about what to do before you travel, during your trip and after you return. For example, before you go, you should find out about any health concerns in your destination. If any of you are looking to travel this spring break or even this summer, I recommend reading this article.

 I found this article super helpful because I am going to be traveling out of the country this summer. I am definitely going to take all these tips into consideration when I go on my vacations!

 Are you going anywhere over spring break or summer vacation? Do you know of any other tips for staying safe while traveling?

14 things about the little dude in your head

This article tells you about some cool things that your brain can do and makes you want to know more about it. Do you think that we use way more then10% of our brains, well see if you're right by clicking on the link.
Sometimes it hard to take in all the things that your mind can do but here's a few.

Where there some things that you learned about your brain or what it can do ?
Do you think that some of the facts in the article are hard to believe?
After reading this article, do you think that your brain is cool and/or interesting?

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Marijuana vs. Alcohol

This article points out the effects, both physical and mental, of marijuana and alcohol. It stated that marijuana itself hasn't been responsible for a single death, however alcohol caused 3.3 million deaths in 2012. It also said that marijuana can cause a person to experience anxiety, panic, and paranoia. Marijuana can also increase a risk of psychosis and schizophrenia. There are many physical and mental effects to alcohol including heart disease, liver disease, cancer, dementia, and depression.

If alcohol is worse than marijuana, why is it legal and marijuana not? Do you think both should be legal? Do you think both should be illegal?


Do protein shakes really help you gain muscle mass?

This article points out that there are benifets to protein shakes, but that they don't work miracles. There is significant evidence showing that protein shakes can help for building muscle mass and for being a meal replacement for weight loss. Even though it does help, the article says that exercising and eating healthy are the most important factors. Drinking protein shakes alone will not necessarily give you more muscle mass. I found this article interesting because I drink protein shakes myself somewhat often and I was curious to know if they are actually beneficial to my health.

Do you use protein shakes in your diet? Why? What is your opinion on protein shakes in ones diet? How important are protein shakes in one's diet?

Friday, March 18, 2016

Should we have more naps throughout the day?

These days, nobody gets enough sleep due how busy our lives are. Students stay up late doing homework, and adults overwork. Because of all this sleep deprivation, we suffer from a lack of concentration, and overall sluggishness. Although catching a nap on the job is looked down on as slacking, naps would benefit both companies and employees. U.S. businesses actually lose around 18 billion dollars yearly in result of “lost productivity" caused by drowsiness. In addition, multiple scientific studies have supported the benefits of even a 30 minute nap in the afternoon—alertness, mood, and productivity are all improved. This topic relates to what we’ve been discussing in health class about mental health. We’ve learned that being well rested can drastically change our quality of life, and can help raise our grades. Companies like Google and Procter & Gamble have made power naps a thing, and has bought specially designed sleeping "pods" as seen in the picture. This could be a good start for improving our mental health. 

Is sleep deprivation an issue for you? How do you feel your sleep deprivation affects your daily life? Do you use power naps to increase productivity? Should companies have “nap rooms”? Should schools have nap time? 

Monday, March 14, 2016

Colorful Minds

Most people know that the most calming color is blue. Blue is the color that most connected to our minds. Yellow is usually associated with sunshine and brightness, but other connotations are suicide and emotional fragility. There are many different ways colors affect our minds whether it is directly or indirectly. Constantly surrounded by color all the time in every aspect of our lives, they have a very strong influence on our emotions and thoughts.

What is your favorite color? What does your favorite color tell you about your dominant thoughts and emotions? Do you think colors affect your daily choices and thoughts?

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Us and Music

Living in the 21st Century, we have the unlimited supply of music. Music has evolved as an entertaining hobby making its way into the medical field. Remember when you would feel some certain way and you would put your blasting headphones on to isolate yourself from a situation? At that point, music starts to make you feel good and forget everything that's happening. Three areas of your brain are affected by this; the hippocampus (memories), prefrontal cortex (judgement), and the parietal lobe (cognition). So how does music help us to become happier? Music releases high levels of dopamine levels throughout the period of listening music. The music also releases serotonin at this period of time. Serotonin and dopamine both help us being a happier person with other benefits included. Now since music is down to preference, some music could hold a deeper meaning to you and actually help motivate you. Euphoria from singing along or even listening to a song helps you motivate yourself and bring better and positive vibes to you. Another way music could help us to becoming happier, it lowers stress levels down. The songs help soothe your body and mind and with all the dopamine rushing throughout you, you feel relaxed and tense free.

Why should music be used other than entertainment? It helps us become a better us. In my opinion, music should be enjoyed, celebrated, and should be a stress free hobby. With so many new ways to utilize music such as using it as an anti-depressant for the anxious and depressed, music could evolve into something much bigger to even uniting us as one.

Does music have an impact on you? Does music make you stress free? Is music a getaway for you? Do you already do this for your own benefits? Do you agree or disagree about this view about music? Why or why not?

Is Breakfast Really Keeping You Lean?

We've all heard the saying, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. What do we base this off of? Scientifically, people who eat breakfast tend to be leaner than those that don't. Recent studies have shown however, that breakfast may not be the deciding factor. It's difficult to tell what single activity is good or bad for you when you have such a variety of actions throughout the day. For example, lets say a person eats breakfast, but then also goes to the gym for one and a half hours and doesn't have dessert later that day.  Those are all fine, healthy actions. Now lets say we have someone who doesn't eat breakfast, has dessert after lunch and dinner, and doesn't regularly excise. When looking at all of your activities, its hard to tell which action is good and bad for you. Who's to say that breakfast is good for, because the person that ate breakfast was overall more healthy than the person who did not. Of course, its always a good idea to eat all three square meals a day, but recent studies have shown that it's not necessary to staying healthy. In fact, many studies show that its better to have smaller, more snack like meals throughout your day, rather than large meals. Personally, I can see both sides to the argument. Our bodies have been having three meals for almost as long as anyone can remember. We've been engineered to eat this way. But, at the same time, breakfast cant be everything. Im sure there are people out there who don't eat breakfast but not only stay lean but healthy, due to all the other activities they take part in during the rest of their day.

Do you personally eat breakfast everyday? And have you noticed changes in weight when you don't eat breakfast for an extended period of time? Why do you think breakfast is important? And do you agree or disagree with this study?

Alternatives to animal testing?

For many years now, we have been using animals for testing hair products, human health, pharmaceuticals, etc. Many of these animals has died and suffered mutations or slow painful deaths or even physiological distress. Usually at the end of the experiments, the animals are killed but some may be used in other experiments. The more commonly used animals in experiments are mice, dogs, cats, hamsters, and in some countries monkeys are used as well. Roughly estimated around 115 million animals worldwide are being used in laboratory experiments every year. Sometimes when a scientist tries to cure a disease, they would try to created artificial symptoms of the disease in the animals and then treat it with different unknown substances. As this was stated in the article, in some cases the drugs may work on animals but when it is given to a human, the drugs fails and causes other issues. The National Research Council believes that they may have found a alternative to animal testing by using human cells or cells lines to conduct the tests. They believe that this alternative can be more reliable to humans because scientist can use computers to help make predictions more relevant to people than animal testing.

How do you feel about animal testing? How reliable do you feel that animal testing is? After reading the article, how do you feel knowing that some drugs can be successful in a animal but fail when given to a human? Do you guys think that we should look into more alternatives than animal testing?

Sunday, March 6, 2016

A Diet to Fight Cancer...?

From learning about nutrition and what to put in your diet, this is an interesting take on how a diet can fight genetic problems. 

Cancer has been researched and battled for a very long time, and scientists and doctors are constantly trying to come up with new ways to treat and aid with the treatment of this deadly disease. Although all types of cancers are different, and therefore treatments may be personalized, there are some general similarities between all types of cancers. Most cancers usually involve the mutation of DNA, but what researchers are starting to recognize is that not only is their genetic damage, but also a abnormality in energy production. Normal cells produce energy using oxygen, however cancer cells "prefer the anaerobic, or oxygen-free, process of fermentation". Instead, caner cells rely heavily on glucose to produce energy. There is also usually mitochondrial damage to the cancer cells, which in turn can be the cause of DNA mutations, not the other way around. This knowledge led to the newly found dietary plan patients can use. This is not a replacement for medicinal treatment, but a helping hand. The diet is high in fat, low in carbs, and especially low in all sugars. In theory, this diet would lead to a kind of starvation of the cancer cell's energy source. This could then slow down the growth of tumors, allowing treatment to be more efficient. 

What do you guys think? From what we learned about nutrition, could there be any side effects from this type of diet? Would anything about this diet be undesirable for some people? Do you think cancer patients would stick with previously conceived "cancer prevention diets", or try something new?

Are You Drinking Enough Water?

The human body is made up of 60% water. Water is very important to drink as it regulates body temperature, delivers oxygen to the body, helps digestion, and more! However, if you don't drink enough water, you can suffer from headaches, irritability, poor physical health, and more. Erica Kenney, a scientist at Harvard's T.H. Chan School of Public Health, studied a group of 4,000 children from the ages 6 to 19, between the years 2009 and 2012. She noticed that half the children were dehydrated. The United States National Agriculture Library says kids need about 10 to 14 cups of water daily. However, this water can come from other foods such as fruits and vegetables (oranges, cucumbers, melons, ect...). I always try my best to drink enough water throughout the day, however I don't drink enough water on school days. 

Do you drink enough water every day? If you don't, why not? If you do, what are your tips on drinking enough water throughout the day? 

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Underage Drinking

Underage drinking is commonly a discussed topic, but it is an issue that needs serious physical attention. Although many (most likely the under aged drinkers) may disagree with categorizing this topic as an issue, experts on alcohol abuse and alcoholism may have the facts and information to change the opinions of those who drink at a young age.

For few obvious reasons, underage drinking is very much looked down upon. Statistics shown on a National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism site titled "Underage Drinking", restates some of those reasons and also states that people ages 11 through 20 consume a lot of alcohol. Not only that, but there are large amounts of deaths and injuries due to the cause of underage drinking (especially while driving). Underage drinking can also lead to sexual assault through multiple and different scenarios, and risky brain development problems. Although a lot of underage drinkers have their own personal and preferable reasons for why they make the choice to drink, they do not considerably think about how the choices that they make to consume alcohol at a young age can "affect their own lives, their families, and their communities". Underage drinking can seriously affect their lives in the matter of even losing it from consuming a lot of unfamiliar and unhealthy liquids that their bodies cannot handle. People who underage drink also tend to make unconscious and terrible decisions that also may lead to losing their lives. Underage drinking can also untie relationships between families and friends for many obvious and personal reasons. As some choose to ignore the various casualties of underage drinking, we become one step closer to losing a life or a relationship. 

How can we prevent underage drinking? How can we stop an underage drinker from making bad decisions? Should we act more strict about the drinking age? Should there be more announcements for awareness? Do you believe that you have the ability to convince one from becoming an underage drinker? How will you choose to personally prevent underage drinking? Will stopping someone from acting upon peer pressure towards a younger person reduce the numbers of underage drinking?

Sweet Tooth

Now that we have been learning about sugar for a while I decide to pick an article that will help us decide on whether or not to do the 10 day sugar challenge.

Shed That Sweet Tooth from TIME to Kids, has talked about how sugar is something that many of us can't resist. Although, by resisting less sugar it can reduce your chances of overweight, obesity, and tooth decay. For those of you that don't know what a tooth decay is, it is the decay of your outer surface of your tooth that can result a bacterial action. Majority of the food we consume has sugar in it, but it all doesn't apply on fresh fruit and vegetables. Majority of the sugar is placed on "added" or "free" sugar products. We might assume that some foods don't have sugar because the labels don't say they consume sugar, but they are know as "hidden" sugars. It's important that one reads the ingredients to make sure what the product consumes. Scientist are recommending that one cuts down on their sugars at least 10%. Although, it can be hard because we are all so used to eating sugary foods, but it is easier to avoid a great amount of sugar in fresh fruit and vegetables.

What can be a good way to stop eating so much sugar? Do you think you can handle not eating sugar for 10 days? Why do you enjoy eating sugar even if you are not craving it? Do you think that by starting a diet it can reduce your chances on getting a tooth decay? Do you think that by reducing your sugars at least 10% it will help change the way you feel?