General Health

Cheers and Jeers

hands_clappingCheers to…

Having smart friends, which might help you excel in school. Research at the State University of New York in Binghamton found that the academic performance of high school students is often tied to their friend circles. For example, a student who is 100th in the class with a friend who is 50th would rise 10 to 15 spots. Those who associated with friends ranked lower in academics saw a similar fall in ranking.

The Center for Science in the Public Interest, for pushing the FDA to limit sweeteners in sodas. In general, 20-ounces of soda has the equivalent of 16 teaspoons of added sugar. The American Heart Association recommends no more than six teaspoons of added sugar per day for women. The public health advocates urging the FDA for change are worried about complications from obesity, such as high blood pressure, diabetes and gout. Learn more about the call for change here.

Jeers to…

Consuming alcohol without considering calories. The World Cancer Research Fund said that among drinkers, alcohol counts for almost 10 percent of total calorie intake. A large glass of wine has almost 180 calories and almost no nutritional value. The Research Fund said dieters often forget these “empty calories,” and cutting down on drinking can help to shave off some pounds. 

Sexually transmitted diseases, which are all preventable. According to the Centers for Disease Control, we spend $16 billion annually to treat STDs in the US, with 19.7 million cases diagnosed each year. People ages 15-24 account for half of those cases. Protect yourself by using condoms, practicing mutual monogamy, or abstaining from sex. 

By Laura Jungreis