3 Alcohol Can Stave Off a Cold
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There's no cure for the common cold, and there's practically fuck all you can do to prevent getting one. Drink all the orange juice you can muster and eat all the vitamin C supplements you can find -- they do little or nothing to prevent you from getting sick. Luckily, it's far from your only option for staving off a cold. In fact, you don't need any medication or supplements at all. All you need to do is get a little drunk.
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"Way ahead of you."
According to the American Journal of Public Health, good old-fashioned alcohol can indeed decrease your susceptibility to the common cold and other respiratory illnesses. Sadly, this is not an open call to get wasted ("Oh, that bottle of whiskey? Look, boss, I'm just trying to save some sick days"). There are, in fact, some very specific circumstances for the alcohol to take effect: You need to be a non-smoker, and you need to keep the consumption at a moderate level -- although, we're happy to report, it's less "a small glass of wine with dinner" and more "Sure, feel free to throw down three or four Jack and Cokes a day."
Researchers think the reason for alcohol's magic flu-stopping power lies in more complicated chemistry (specifically, ethanol's ability to boost our cyclic adenosine monophosphate levels to a Hulk-like degree, which allows our bodies to combat flu symptoms much more efficiently). It's worth noting that not every scientist vehemently agrees with the whole "just keep yourself tipsy and the virus won't stand a chance" argument: One Spanish study found that the consumption of beer and spirits had no correlation whatsoever with the risk of getting the flu. However, red wine seemed to do the trick, although the researchers are quick to point out there's a chance it could be just a glitch.
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"Drinking trial #159: Inconclusive. Back to the laboratory!"
But even those mixed results mean that alcohol has a better scientific record for cold prevention than shit in your supplement aisle like Airborne.
2 Horror Movies Burn Calories
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Here's the bad news: Pop culture makes weight loss seem way easier than it actually is (losing a lot of weight is borderline impossible without surgery). But when it comes to burning a few effortless calories now and then, there are all sorts of little things you can do -- for instance, we have previously pointed out that fidgeting burns 350 calories a day. Well, now a study says you can add horror movies to the list.
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"You still use a treadmill? How quaint!"
Yep, watching horror movies gives you a sitting workout ... as long as the movie actually scares you. Settling in for 90 minutes of terror manipulates your adrenaline levels, heart rate, oxygen intake, and carbon dioxide output in a way that mimics actual physical exercise, and thus burns calories. Granted, it's not enough to take you from chubby to Size 0 by watching the entire Leprechaun series in one night (although it is a surefire way to lose 20 pounds via shame-sweating), but it will burn around the same amount of calories as a 30-minute walk in a single sitting.
The study actually boiled it down to which specific movies worked best. Out of the 10 movies they tested, the number one spot went to The Shining, with a very decent 184 calories burned per viewing. Jaws will chew 161 calories off you, The Exorcist will chant 158 away, and Alien is good for 152. A general rule of thumb is to always go for the movies that rely on jump scares, as they are the most efficient at giving you those short bursts of fear-induced adrenaline, which increase your metabolism rate and thus cause the increased calorie loss.
This screamer video playlist is basically like P90X.
"Hey, Cracked," someone is no doubt saying. "Couldn't watching a nice porno do the same thing? Like if it made me excited enough ..." The study didn't mention that, but what we can say is ...