Interview #4 Breakfast with Cecilia

Especially for students, mental health is very important.

Mr Bee: Hi Cecilia, thanks for joining us today.  What does health mean to you?

Cecilia: For me, it means both mental and physical – it is not only physical health.  Especially for students, mental health is very important.

Mr Bee: Why is mental health so important for students?

Cecilia: Students have a lot of pressure. They need a clear mind to work on things. Relaxing is very important.  I found that when you do something that is mentally taxing, going to the gym helps my brain to relax.  I read some theories on making yourself mentally tired, after the gym this is how I feel, it has a refreshing effect. So,there should always be a balance between the physical and the mental sides.

Mr Bee: What do you eat for breakfast?

Cecilia: Here or in China?  In China, It was very regular, usually porridge, very light, boiled eggs, a variety of porridges actually, noodles and soya milk.  Here in the UK, I have changed my diet a lot.  I have toast, and recently I have it with avocado and banana. Milkshake, muffins and fruits also make a delicious breakfast.

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Mr Bee: Having studied at university in both England and China, have you noticed any differences in lifestyles that affect health?

Cecilia: Eating habits are a big difference between the two countries.  Here in England, the time people eat is different to China.  I find lunch is typically not a heavy meal, often lighter.  At university in China we have a refectory, and regular eating times are the norm – morning, lunch and dinner also, we rarely eat cold food.  I find lunchtime in England can be a little rushed.  In China they think the lunch break is very important.  In some schools students have enough time to take a nap after lunch.

Mr Bee: What do you think about naps?

Cecilia: Taking naps at midday for 20, 30mins can be great way to feel regenerated for the afternoon.  It really helps.

Mr Bee: What is good sleep for you?

Cecilia: Some research shows that people should sleep 7/8 hours.  But for me, sometimes I only get 4 hours sleep.  I do try and play catch-up sometimes.  For example, If I stay up late all week, I will sleep a whole day at the weekend.  I feel my body is telling when I need to recharge for how long.  Sometimes I need more than 12 hours sleep, sometimes 3/4 hours is enough, as long as I feel I get enough rest.

Mr Bee:  What is a big challenge in your quest for perfect health?

Cecilia: Time is problem for changing my eating habits.  My timings are very irregular at present due to my work and study commitments.  My ideal scenario would be eating at regular times and always home cooked meals.

Mr Bee: Sum up health in one sentence?

Cecilia: Health is following what your body tells you.

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