Laney College

Health Tips

Health Tips

Does being thin mean being fit?  


Fitness comes from being able to perform standard types of activity such as playing with your kids, taking the stairs and mowing the lawn. So being thin doesn’t necessarily mean being fit. In fact, a recent study by Harvard University School of Public Health, indicated that thin women who were sedentary had a 55 percent increased risk of dying compared with thin women who were physically active. So, maintain a healthy weight by being active!


What is Computer Vision Syndrome
Computer vision syndrome, CVS, is becoming one of the most common maladies suffered among office workers.  CVS afflicts many of the 75 million Americans who spend a large part of their days with their eyes glued to a computer screen.  Another 150 million who use the computer less can still be afflicted with CVS.  The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health asserts that 88 percent of all computer users will eventually develop CVS.

A computer screen is made up of thousands of pixels, which are actually tiny points of light.  As a result, the eyes shift focus between the pixels when you look at a computer screen, which can cause eyestrain.  That causes your eyes to wear themselves out by constant refocusing.  The result is tired, burning eyes, vision distortion, headaches and back pain.

To avoid the problem, wear computer glasses, blink frequently, use soothing eye drops, and avoid glare.  Try to place your monitor at least 20 inches away from your face and 10 to 20 degrees below your line of vision.

Adapted from Painless Vision Quest in Energy Times



Be A Germ Stopper!

The Health Center would like to remind you that vaccination is not the only way to help prevent a cold or flu. ‘Tis the season to be a germ stopper!

Colds and flu are spread by droplets from your respiratory tract which become airborne when you cough or sneeze. Uncovered coughs and sneezes can send germs flying as far as three feet away!

These simple actions can help stop the spread of germs and help protect you from getting sick:

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your sleeve.
  • Clean your hands often with soap and water or alcohol based cleaners.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.  Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his/her eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.  When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick, too.

Stay home

when you are sick to prevent others from catching your germs.



If you should become ill, ask your healthcare provider about antiviral medications which are available for influenza and can be used to treat the flu if they are started in the first two days of an illness.

Other good health habits, such as getting plenty of sleep, engaging in physical activity, managing stress, drinking water, and eating nutritional food, will help you stay healthy in the winter and all year round.

For more information, ask your healthcare provider or call the CDC Immunization Hotline at 1-800-CDC-INFO or visit their website at

                                   Protect your health!  Be a germ stopper!


Six Ways to Healthy Eating

  • Eat a good breakfast every day – use fruits, milk, yogurt, hot or cold cereals, low-fat cheeses and instant breakfast mixes.  If you don’t feel like having an early breakfast then have a small nutritious snack after waking up and enjoy the rest of your breakfast in the middle of the morning.
  • Avoid skipping meals – make it your goal to have no less than 5-6 hours between meals.
  • Get enough protein – rotate skinless chicken, fish and lean meats as main courses.  Use low-fat  (1%) or non-fat dairy products regularly and eat eggs occasionally.
  • Drink Plenty of water – it makes up more than half your body composition and must be replaced daily.  You need it to regulate body temperature, digest foods and prevent constipation.
  • Fiber aids in digestion, prevents constipation, decreases cholesterol and decreases blood sugar.  Eat whole grain cereals, raw vegetables and fruits with the skin.  Add beans to soups, stews and salads.
  • Minimize high sugar and processed food consumption – sweets and desserts tend to be high in calories and low in nutrients.


What’s Bothering You?
A Virus, Bacteria or Allergy?
  Virus Bacteria Allergy
Runny Nose Often Rare Often
Body Aches Often with Flu Rare No
Headache Often Rare
(Yes, with
Sinus Infection)
Dizzy Often with Flu Sometimes Rare
Fever Often with Flu Sometimes Rare
Cough Often Often Sometimes
Dry Cough Often Sometimes Sometimes
Cough produces sputum from lungs Rare Often Rare
Hoarseness Often Rare Sometimes
Recurs at a particular season Sometimes No Often
Only a single major complaint (sore throat, earache, sinus pain or cough) Unusual Usual Unusual
Clear, white, yellow, or green nasal drainage Yes Produced more after 7-10 days Yes
Itchy, watery eyes Sometimes Rare Often
Sneezing Often Rare Often
Duration of Illness A cold is usually 7-10 days.  The flu may be longer – depending on complications Variable Often prolonged
Do Antibiotics help? No, for colds. Antiviral medications** for the flu may shorten the course of the illness if taken within 1-2 days of symptom onset. Yes No, but there are medications available to prevent allergies from occurring or at least lessen the symptoms
Medical help effective? Depends whether it’s a cold or flu. Yes Yes, if symptoms are intolerable.
Preventable? Yes Yes Yes, with medical help

** For more information about antiviral treatment for the flu, call the Centers for Disease Control
at 1-800-CDC-INFO or visit their website at .