Rethinking the myths of college weight gain


The myth that college causes extra weight gain becomes especially prominent during finals period. Students munching on junk food is a common sight during finals, from those Lays from the SciLi vending machine to the Cheez-Its from CVS or the Reese’s back from Halloween.

Such snacks are not as wholesome as a plate of celery and carrots, but studies show that eating junk food isn’t actually the main factor in gaining extra pounds. A recent study targeting college students found that a poor sleep schedule factors more heavily in weight gain.

It’s not that less sleep causes weight gain: it’s that less sleep causes more sweet cravings. When you’re not fully rested, your body naturally seeks for a quick energy source. Sugar provides that short-term, immediate energy, and your body wants that extra kick to get the day going. The journal Sleep followed students into their adult years and found each later hour of bedtime in school resulted in an approximate two-point increase in body mass index. Continue Reading

Best places to take a midday nap

Finals are upon us, which means long, sad nights studying (or crying) in the Rock or SciLi and resulting sleep deprivation. Though it’s unquestionable Brown needs a designated nap-room, here are some prime spots to catch a few Z’s in the midst of finals period.

A Blue Room booth

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Though it’s debatably unacceptable to hog a coveted Blue Room booth all to yourself, one of them makes a great, albeit noisy, mid-day nap spot. It fulfills my general life rule to never stray too far from the nearest source of muffins.

Chairs in the SciLi basement

The kidney bean-shaped grey alien chairs in the Friedman Study Center seem designed perfectly for a low-key snooze. The soft suede and gentle curve of the seat gives your body a comforting embrace.

List Art Center couches

Though not as modern or soothing as the SciLi basement’s chairs, the couches on the low trafficked second floor of List provide a comfortable, quiet place to take a quick nap.

Continue Reading

Blogify: Hibernation

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With 4:30 pm sunsets, the polar vortex in full swing,  and the official start of winter rapidly approaching, there’s no better way to brave the freezing weather than by crawling under your covers and settling in for a long winter’s nap. A great slumber is nothing without the perfect slumber playlist, so here’s BlogDH’s musical guide to hibernation.

Image via.

Four ways to combat Early Morning Syndrome

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Before you read any further (and I do realize you’ve just started) I must include a disclaimer. If you are an early riser who wakes up with the sun, you will probably not be able to relate to my struggle. If, in addition to being an early riser, you are also completely devoid of any finer human emotions like pity and empathy, stop reading immediately. For this article is meant only for sympathetic ears, and what I am about to share is a deeply personal tale. But it has to be told. I am sure I am not the only one battling this problem, and others who are will draw support from this post and realize they’re not alone.

And now on to the Early Morning Syndrome.

The initial symptoms are subtle, almost imperceptible. A nagging feeling of irritation and animosity when the alarm rings, a growing fondness of the snooze button, and burrowing deeper into bed with each vibrant ring instead of reluctantly crawling out.

The problem only gets worse from there. Your alarm becomes your arch-nemesis, and you sometimes forget that it doubles as your beloved phone during the day just as you begin to contemplate throwing it out the window. The snooze button becomes your lifeline and your rationalization of “just one more time” is eerily similar to other addictions. And ignoring the alarm’s strident morning calls becomes as natural as turning a deaf ear to the professor’s warnings of “no late hand-ins.” Continue Reading

PSA: Sleep-texting totally exists


Recently, I’ve woken up to a few texts asking me why I was up at 4 a.m. when I have no recollection of being awake. To my dismay, I have started “sleep-texting” some of my friends and family members. Given a somewhat questionable history of sleepwalking (and sleep-talking), I’m not completely surprised, but what’s totally bizarre is that my answers have been fairly coherent, logical, and topical. I just have no recollection of sending them. After doing some research, I have realized sleep-texting is totally a thing. Continue Reading

PsychPowerGod: 10 Healthy (And a Few Unhealthy) Ways To Fend Off Insomnia

It has happened to all of us. Lying in bed—can’t sleep. Not even a late night Hulu session can do the trick. It’s time to nip this problem in the bud. Here are some healthy ways to get the well-deserved sleep you need:

  1. Exercise more. It wouldn’t kill you to take off those sweatpants you’ve been wearing since Presidents Day weekend and head over to the OMAC.
  2. Don’t nap. It will likely make you less tired come bedtime.
  3. Avoid doing work on or in your bed. You want your bed to be a soporific sanctuary, not a worry ward.
  4. Steer clear of caffeine (and other stimulants) after the sun sets.
  5. Try to maintain a regular sleep pattern. Going to bed around the same time every night can help normalize your biological clock.
  6. Stop stressing about it! Worrying about insomnia can make it worse. Put sleep on the back burner and focus on other things.
  7. Avoid bright lights when approaching bedtime. Light late at night can trick your body into thinking it is daytime.
  8. Get off before you doze off. Take a page out of Marvin Gaye’s book and try some Sexual Healing.
  9. Meditate before bed. It will calm your nervous system and clear your head.
  10. Melatonin. This naturally occurring hormone is secreted by your pineal gland and can be taken over the counter to treat insomnia.

And of course there are the less healthy methods:

  1. Alcohol. From a glass of red wine to the SciLi Challenge, alcohol can help get the job done. While it might help you pass out fall into a slumber more easily, BEWARE, because too much of it will reduce the quality of your sleep.
  2. Marijuana. Mary Jane is probably good at tucking you in, but her continual use before bed may cause an unhealthy dependency.
  3. The Owen Wilson method. It’s quick, effective, and kind of scary.