It’s that time of the semester again. It’s finals week! Staying healthy during this week is pivotal for students to work optimally. With scheduled finals throughout the week, clean checks, and the hassle of moving out, students are pushing their body’s to the limit. There are some very important things to remember that will help keep you feeling great until the very end of the semester.
Adults between the ages of 18-60 are recommended to get 7-9 hours of sleep each night. Lack of sleep has been associated with many chronic diseases like diabetes, such as: high blood pressure and heart disease. Getting sufficient sleep nightly is crucial for maintaining your overall health and wellness.
Memory recall and concentration improve the more an individual is rested. Sleep deprivation affects not only your energy level and mood, but also your ability to concentrate, learn, and focus. Concentration, energy, and mood are correlated with your academic performance, which is extremely important.
What to do:
- Get 8-9 hours of sleep nightly
- Study during optimal brain function periods, which are usually from 6-8pm (early afternoons are times of least alertness).
- Don’t overuse caffeinated drinks. The caffeine will remain in your system anywhere around 6-8hours.
Exercise is good for your health in more ways than one. It helps to reduce stress and better maintain overall mental health. It also helps you to engage in more restful sleep.
At Naperville Central High School, in Chicago, IL, research was done on students that struggled with math and reading. An exercise program was implemented, and revealed that those who did some sort of exercise for 30minutes were 10% better at problem solving.
What to do:
- Block out 20-60minutes you can dedicate to exercise 3-5 days a week.
- Get your heart elevated to about 60-80% your maximum heart rate. (Calculated by subtracting your age from 220)
- Stretch for 10 minutes three times a week.
- Do some push-ups or jumping jacks before starting your studying or test.
Get Your Nutrients
A study done at the College of North Tripura revealed that, “the nutritional status of college students has a definite relationship with his/her academic achievement.” Additionally, the study revealed that consumption levels of fat were stongly correlated with academic achievement. This could be due to the fact that fat is crucial to neuronal circuitry. Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Riboflavin, and Thiamine have the strongest correlation with academic status respectively. These vitamins all play a part in neuronal development, connectivity, and signal processing and transmission.
Include in your diet foods that are:
- Rich in Vitamin C: oranges, berries, cabbage, kiwi, pineapple, potatoes and salad greens.
- Rich in Vitamin A: sweet potato, carrots, squash, cantaloupe, and sweet red peppers.
- Foods that contain Riboflavin: soybeans, spinach, yogurt, almonds, mushrooms, and eggs.
- Foods that contain Thiamine: navy/black beans, barley, dried peas, green peas, pinto beans, oats and lentils.