Daily Archives: May 23, 2013
Last year, for some unbeknownst reason, Davis decided to temporarily suspend EXB (Exercise Biology) as a major. I am fully aware that I’m completely biased, seeing as how that was one of my majors, but [to me] it was quite possibly one of the stupidest decisions the school has ever made.
EXB changed my life, and I’m very sure that I’m not the only one. I loved almost all the EXB courses I took (with the exception of biomechanics, but that was due to the fact that I hadn’t taken the prerequisite or the recommended co-requisite yet due to my quarterly attempts at academic suicide), and I still carry the things that I learned from those classes with me today. My decision to change my original major to EXB was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. The teaching and instruction that I received from the amazing professors in that department remain unparalleled, and I’ve taken a crap ton of classes (105 different classes in my four years of undergrad alone >_> let’s not factor in grad school and med school), so I really think that’s saying something. It’s 1/2 of how I started exercising regularly (so I wouldn’t be a disgrace to my major, and also because my ex offered to be my free personal trainer, so why the hell not).
I’m actually lying about not having a clue as to why they suspended it as a major. Word on the street was that people thought it was “just another premed major, and the school already had enough of those.” Seeing as how I’m a poster child for that very reasoning because I’m currently in med school, I can’t argue against the fact that it is indeed an amazing major to be under if med school is indeed your goal, but it’s also produced a whole ton of dentists, pharmacists, physical therapists, athletic trainers, personal trainers, physician assistants, nurses…(I could go on, but I’ll stop there.)
Please don’t take that major away. :[ It’s honestly one of the most unique majors in the school (with the funnest, most informative and applicable classes, I might add).
Loosely related, but I helped out at a women’s health fair the other day and while I was there, I decided to check out what my bone density was. (I also got to see just how sun-damaged my face had gotten. Apparently, it’s not nearly as terrible as I thought. Mayhaps all those years of my parents telling me to keep my face out of the sun so I wouldn’t get any more freckles/get any uglier weren’t all for naught after all.) Anyway, back to bones. Once upon a time (senior year of undergrad), Dr. Shaffrath called me out in the middle of EXB 117 to say that I was an awesome human being. (I still wish I’d recorded that lecture, because I’m pretty sure it’d cheer me up even on my worst days.)
His reasons for doing so were because I’d somewhat recently volunteered to be the test subject for the hypothermia lab (it is just as it sounds; I basically submerged all but my head in a tank of cold water for an hour so we could monitor how my body responded to it vs. someone who exercised on a cycle ergometer next to me in the same tank). Usually, shivering is the beginning of the end and once you start doing that, you’re done for if you stay in said conditions for too much longer. But! We discovered that I was at the perfect body fat:muscle ratio that my shivering actually managed to raise my core body temperature. Pretty sweet. (Super-fun labs, didn’t I tell you? It’s been 3.5 years but I still remember all that pretty effing clearly.)
I’m really bringing this all up to preface my bone density results. I did a presentation in Cantonese for PHAC that year too, to educate the public (e.g. our patients) about osteoporosis. As an Asian female with a fairly small frame, a family history of osteoporosis (although I think it’s due in part to the fact that she’s sedentary/had to take corticosteroids for a while) and possible low calcium intake (I may be lactose intolerant, and I haven’t been eating/drinking much stuff with Ca lately), I have several risk factors for osteoporosis.
But hooray for weight-bearing activity, right? Your calcium stores peak at around the age of 25, so start building em’ so you’ll have farther to fall (especially if you’re female)!
I guess 0.9 isn’t too shabby. (My friend was at 1.5, so I’m really curious as to what she does. Mayhaps I should increase my calcium intake and start kicking telephone poles.)
- 0 to -1: normal bone density
- -1 to -2.5: osteopenia (early osteoporosis)
- -2.5 or less: osteoporosis
So this is my public service announcement to everyone:
- Prevention is key!
- Make sure you get adequate calcium + vitamin D.
Up to 1 yo: 210-270 mg
1-3 yo: 500 mg
4-8 yo: 800 mg
9-18 yo: 1300 mg
19-50 yo: 1000 mg
51+: 1200 mg
400-1000 IU/day for adults (it’s safe for anyone older than 1 yo to take up to 2000 IU/day)
- Weight-bearing activity!
- Don’t smoke!