Staying Healthy in College

Staying healthy in college can be difficult.  Last month the Hope & Wellness Center lead efforts to raise awareness on campus regarding eating disorders as part Nation Eating Disorders Awareness Week.  Here are some thought provoking stats on that:edstat.jpg

Unlike many trends and fad diets will lead you to believe, a healthy diet is well rounded in all of the Macro nutrients.  In fact, the key to a healthy weight and even lasting weight loss is a diet balanced in macronutrients.  Lacie Glover gives 6 great reasons to eat healthy in her article here: https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/health/medical-costs/benefits-of-eating-healthy/

foodOf course, we’ve all heard or been lectured on a nutritious diet.  With the many campus activities held each month, there is even a lot of opportunities to have great meals for free on campus! But what are other ways we, as students, can stay healthy?

Get enough sleep:

Dave Grossman, a Psychologist and Author, talks extensively about sleep and how our bodies need it and what happens when we don’t get enough.  Students often miss out on a lot of sleep.  Between extra curricular activities, hanging with friends, studying for that exam… or not being able to sleep out of anxious for that exam.  For a long time many believed that once missed, sleep could not be made up for.  Turns out, according to Dr. Grossman, that sleep does indeed have a “bank” that we can add into.  So don’t feel guilty for that nap you’re about to take in between classes!  In fact, according to our own Dr. Calvillo, sleep helps solidify what you just learned, transitioning it all into long-term memory!

(Here’s a great article on Dr. Dave Grossman’s work which is super interesting, especially for our large veteran population: https://www.stripes.com/seeking-better-sleep-1.133924#.WL5PHPnytPY ) Continue reading

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Gobble Up Gratitude

gratitude_keep_calmTypically, November kicks off the season of many thanks and celebrations. However, this year we want to shake things up a bit. Rather than just a season, we want to make gratitude a daily lifestyle habit.

Why should a college student make gratitude part of their busy daily routine? By celebrating what we already have we increase our happiness, health, and ability to cope with life’s challenges, all of which increase our academic abilities. Here are several other ways gratitude benefits you:

Emotional-More Positive Feelings, More Relaxed, More Resilient, Happier Memories, Less Envious Continue reading

Depression: What next?

“Anxiety is the cousin visiting out of town that depression felt obligated to bring to the party. Mom, I am the party, only I am a party I don’t want to be at.” –(Button Poetry) Sabrina Benaim.

Depression is a word full of stigma and taboo, that our society often pushes aside and tries to avoid. Now, what exactly does the word depression mean to you? To many it’s a word used as a simple temporary emotion. Reality, depression is defined as a serious mental health condition in which a person feels very hopeless, unimportant and sad. Those affected by it are often unable to live in a normal way, and it typically occurs for prolonged periods of time.

quote-depression-chemistryAn estimate of 25 million individuals in the United States suffer from major depression. According Nami, National Alliance on Mental Illnesses, “Women are 70% more likely than men to experience depression, and young adults aged 18–25 are 60% more likely to have depression than people aged 50 or older.” http://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-Conditions/Depression

Being affected by depression makes it difficult to feel motivated to try to push yourself to feel better. Overcoming depression isn’t easy, it takes a lot of time and patience with oneself. You can’t just will yourself or others to simply “snap out of it,” or “get over it” chances are it won’t help them or you. However, there are many options and abilities to govern depression better than you realize—even if it’s severe or very persistent. Feeling better takes time, but can be achieved if you make positive choices for yourself or others each day. It’s important to start small by:

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Let’s DE – STRESS before we get STRESSED

Yoga dates back to 3000 B.C., with focus on applying and understanding your place in the world and how to live harmoniously with others in it.   But between 12 units, working part time and trying to find parking at CSUSM, who has the time to breathe and de – stress!? Well, what most students don’t know is that Breathing and taking the time to de – stress is one of the most important steps into succeeding academically. One of the easiest ways to de – stress is to do Yoga. Yoga is a great way to connect the body, mind and spirit, begin a healthy life-style and promote a good sense of well being. A study done in 2012 by the Indian Journal of Community Medicine, states that “Yoga, especially breathing techniques, can also increase concentration and academic performance in students struggling academically”.

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Benefits of Physical Activity and Exercise

ImageHey Cougars! With Spring Break just around the corner and students prepping for midterms, Summer is steadfast on its way for some rays and Vitamin D. During this time many college students plan ahead to get back into shape and lose all that holiday weight. Although it is a good thought to be concerned about appeal and presentation, are you aware of the benefits of physical activity and exercise? If not, sit tight, listen, and turn in those thoughts about 6-packs and muscular biceps, and learn more about the positive health effects about staying active. Continue reading