Isaac Guest Blogs: Are final exams bad for our health?

The Guest Blog Post is from Isaac Park, one of Dr. T’s Health Psych Students:

Finals are almost here at UCLA, and this is a hectic time when everyone’s diet, exercise regimen, and healthy lifestyle initiatives take a tailspin. This recent study investigated just this, looking at the effects of academic stress on health behavior in students. 180 students participated in either an exam stress group or a control group. Afterwards, they completed questionnaires about behaviors and stress. Results indicated that in the stress group smoking increased 54.7% and physical activity decreased. Also, alcohol consumption increased by 17% for individuals low in social support. This study ultimately shows how academic stress may play a major role in a student’s health behaviors, so for all of you preparing for the stressful week ahead, try to be conscious of your unhealthy stress management behaviors.