Ask a Wellness Ambassador: fasting, Uber safety

A biweekly column addressing students’ health questions from office of Health, Wellness, and Recreation.

Dear Wellness Ambassadors,

I heard from my friend that exercising while fasting will help me lose weight faster. Is this true?

Essentially, your friend is partly right. But this sort of weight loss is only short-lived and is not beneficial long-term. The key to a healthy, strong body isn’t restricting calories and avoiding food. Nourishing your body with nutrient-dense foods is the key to success!

When you are exercising, your body is particularly in need of energy from food, so it’s important to fuel it with healthy carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Without this fuel, your body will be forced to turn to other sources of energy. You may find yourself losing muscle mass and becoming tired more quickly.

And the negative side effects don’t stop there — Without the proper food, your body may fall into a hypoglycemic state. This happens when your blood sugar levels drop too low, causing you to become fatigued, confused, shaky, and even anxious.

In addition, if you aren’t eating before and after exercise, you may become overly hungry and grab whatever food is nearest to you, whether it nourishes your body or not.

Thankfully, there’s a better way to lose weight and more importantly stay healthy whilst exercising. Try consuming smaller nutritious meals throughout the day. Incorporate fruits, vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, and lean proteins in your diet. Most importantly, don’t focus on the scale number. Eat nutritiously and listen to your body!

Dear Wellness Ambassadors,

 

This past weekend my friend and I took an Uber home from a party. When the car arrived, the license plate was different than our reservation, but the Uber driver said it was because they were borrowing a friend’s car. I was nervous about getting in the car, but my friend was convinced it was no big deal, that this happens to them all the time. It ended up being okay, but I was still really uncomfortable. What can I do if this happens again?

You are lucky things turned out okay! A car showing up with a different license plate is a big red flag. If this were to happen again in the future, I would suggest you to stand up for the safety for yourself, as well as your friend, and request another Uber driver.

It might feel uncomfortable to go against your friend’s opinion or to send the Uber driver away, but it’s important to voice your opinion when you feel unsafe, and stand by it — try not to let your friend influence your ultimate decision.

Getting into any vehicle with an unknown driver is potentially unsafe. Even though Uber is a great alternative type of transportation, it is always good to trust your gut instincts. In many cases Uber can be safe and efficient, but it is always best to make sure your driver and the vehicle follow the description that the app provides when your Uber is on its way.

It is also a great idea to share your route with a friend. This option is available to select once your Uber driver picks you up. It is also a good idea to have a charged cell phone and to map the route that the Uber is also following to ensure that you are on the correct path to your destination.

Just always keep in mind that your safety is the most important thing and that you are your own best advocate. Stand up for yourself and follow your instincts when you feel like your safety is being or may be compromised. It’s not worth the risk otherwise.

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