America Saves at Wellness at Wells

As we enter into week eight, it’s hard to believe that the spring semester is almost halfway over. Unfortunately, as the days tick by, so does the money in students’ bank accounts.

Thinking about stretching those college funds all the way into the summer can be daunting. Thankfully, this week is America Saves Week and several events and resources have been put in place on campus to help students understand and better manage their financial lives.

Students often wonder how to make ends meet, how to budget while waiting tables, how student loans actually work, and what to expect upon graduation. On Wednesday from 1-3 p.m., MoneySmarts from the Office of Financial Literacy will join us at Wellness at Wells (Wells Library Learning Commons, Room 138) to touch on questions like these and more!

“The MoneySmarts program, even though we are under the Office of Financial Literacy, considers our approach to be a financial wellness approach–it’s more about recognizing how decisions you make in financial life affect your overall health and well-being,” said Morgan McMillan, Assistant Director of Financial Literacy.

For questions that may be more personal, or require lengthy explanations, the MoneySmarts team can help students schedule free individual 30-minute consultations. Students can choose between a general “financial check-up” or a financial wellness appointment, based on their specific needs.

Equipped with financial wellness experts and loads of information, the MoneySmarts team will be a valuable addition to Wellness at Wells this week–don’t miss it! We’ll have our staple wellness assessments, free massages, and aromatherapy as well!

Here are some other events they’ll be hosting throughout the week as well.

Cupcakes and Condoms Sexual Health Fair

Are you curious about how different types of condoms feel, but don’t want to buy an entire box to experiment with? Have you ever wanted to try lubricant, but had no idea what kind to purchase? At Cupcakes and Condoms, a sexual and reproductive health event for all students, we’ll help you with these questions, as well as the ones you didn’t even know you had!

Visit the Frangipani Room at the IMU between 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. this Tuesday, February 28, for an event packed with free cupcakes, free sexual health and safety products, photo booth fun, and more!

Cupcakes and Condoms will feature a plethora of intriguing booths for visitors to explore, including:

  1. Photo booth: Yes, there will be two people dressed in a cupcake and condom costume available for pics! We’re guessing you won’t find this photo opportunity on a regular basis!
  2. Consent: A sexual health event would be incomplete without a booth designated to reminding everyone of the importance of consent.
  3. Condom “dos” and “don’ts”: If you’re interested in learning more about male condoms, female condoms, and other barrier methods, this is the booth for you. You’ll also find advice on where to find free condoms, as well as how to store and discard them.
  4. STI information: College students have a tendency to underestimate the likelihood of contracting an STI. Did you know that 15 to 24-year-olds account for half of all new sexually transmitted infections (CDC)? Visit this booth to take a confidential risk assessment and identify potentially unsafe behaviors.
  5. Touch, feel, and proper fit: When it comes to condoms, one size does NOT fit all. In fact, not only are there different sizes to choose from, but there are different styles as well! We will have a fun variety of condoms to give away at this booth!
  6. Lubricants: Believe it or not, there are certain types of lubricant (water, silicone, or oil-based) that should be used differently depending on the activity you and your partner would like to engage in. Which kind of lubricant pairs best with sex toys? Which kind lasts the longest? Which should you use during water activities? Find answers to these questions and more!
  7. Consent condom races
  8. Sexual health goodie box & birth control methods
  9. Partner communication: Use role play and modeling to brainstorm communication barriers in your sex life and ways to overcome these obstacles.
  10. The Game of Life (sex Life): This grown-up twist to a childhood board game will facilitate discussion about the consequences of STIs and unintended pregnancy, and how your life could change provided one of these occurs.
  11. Genital health and self-exam information
  12. Condom crafts
  13. Ask Big Red: Ask our trusted Sexperts any of your sex questions in person, or fill out our online Ask Big Red questionnaire!
  14. Reproductive justice
  15. Pharmacy residence hall delivery
  16. Free safety products
  17. Cupcakes!!!!!

If you want reassurance that safe sex is fun sex, peace that comes with being well-informed, or even just free goodies, join us Tuesday!

Mumps on the IUB Campus

Indiana University is investigating a cluster of mumps cases on the Bloomington campus. Five total cases have been confirmed since December. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), mumps cases nationwide are at a 10-year high, with 46 states reporting cases in the last year. IU is taking all precautions to protect its students, faculty and staff, including offering immunization to potentially exposed persons.

The university is working with the Monroe County Health Department and the Indiana State Department of Health to identify and directly notify anyone who may have been in close contact with the students. They also are implementing measures to help prevent the additional transmission of mumps. Additionally, IU advises that the campus and surrounding community educate themselves about the symptoms, transmission and prevention of mumps.

  • According to the CDC, symptoms for the mumps include fever, headache, muscle aches, tiredness, loss of appetite, and swollen and tender salivary glands under the ears on one or both sides. Mumps is spread from direct and indirect contact with an infected person’s respiratory droplets, which can be transmitted by sneezing and coughing. People with mumps can spread their infections for up to two days before and five days after the onset of symptoms. Therefore, anyone with symptoms should stay home and avoid others to prevent the further spread of illness.
  • Mumps is caused by a virus, so antibiotics are not indicated. Symptoms typically appear 16-18 days after infection but can range from 12-25 days. Generally, mumps is a mild illness, and some people may not have any symptoms. While complications and more serious issues can result from a mumps infection, they are generally rare, with a 1 percent to 3 percent complication rate.
  • The university encourages university members to check their vaccination records with their primary-care provider. Currently, the best way to prevent mumps is to be vaccinated with two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, or MMR. Two doses of vaccine are only considered around 88 percent effective at preventing infection, so some people who have been fully vaccinated with two MMRs may still contract mumps.
  • Practicing good hygiene habits–such as regularly washing your hands with soap and water, sneezing and coughing into a tissue or your elbow, and avoiding the sharing of drinks, food and utensils–is a good way to prevent illness and transmission.
  • Students with symptoms–even if they have received a MMR vaccine–should stay home and immediately call before going to the IU Health Center at 812-855-5002 during office hours or 855-303-2631 after hours.
  • If students have any concerns about possible symptoms, they should contact the IU Health Center or their primary-care provider. Treatment for mumps is geared toward alleviating symptoms. Bed rest, a soft diet and a pain reliever for aches are often recommended.

Again, you should stay away from others if you think you may have mumps. To learn more, visit this mumps webpage and view these fast facts here. Family members can read more information about the university’s health services on our website.

Celebrate EveryBODY Week!

This Monday is the start of Celebrate EveryBODY Week and we’re celebrating YOU! Too often students focus on the things they don’t like about their bodies, the things they want to change, and the things society tells them don’t look quite right. Her nose is too big, he’s too short, her breasts are too small, his smile is crooked, she’s overweight, he’s ugly…

Celebrate EveryBODY Week strives to change this thought process by celebrating what we appreciate about our bodies and what our bodies allow us to do!

Join IU Health Center staff and other campus partners throughout the week for body appreciation activities, inspiration, and free giveaways!

Campus #CEBW Activities

Monday, Feb. 20: Embrace movie screening – 7:00 p.m. in Ballantine 013, sponsored by IU Body Project. Also, from 6:00-8:00 p.m., stop by the SRSC, contribute to a mural, use a SnapChat geofilter, and get some cool swag!

Tuesday, Feb. 21: Body image activities, giveaways, and information about body image and eating disorders, 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. in SRSC and Wells Library foyers, sponsored by IU Health Center. Also, from 6:00-8:00 p.m., stop by the WIC, contribute to a mural, use a SnapChat geofilter, and get some cool swag!

Wednesday, Feb. 22: Wellness assessments, massages, giveaways, and your chance to write positive messages on the walls of Wells Library (well, one wall…just one), 1:00-3:00 p.m. in Wells Library Learning Commons, Room 138, sponsored by IU Health Center and IU Libraries. Also, from 6:00-8:00 p.m., stop by the SRSC, contribute to a mural, and get some cool swag! Check out our Snapchat filter at both locations!

Thursday, Feb. 23: Time to tell us what you love about yourself using the hashtag #CEBW!

Friday, Feb. 24: Stop by the SRSC from 6:00-8:00 p.m., contribute to a mural, use a SnapChat geofilter, and get some cool swag!

Outside of this week, there are many ways you can help change the way we view our bodies. Did you know that 30% of college women rate their own personal appearance as “traumatic or very difficult to handle”?

First things first, to counteract statistics like these, you can serve as a positive role model for others. Work to develop an accepting and appreciative attitude towards your own body and actively challenge the negative messages that are pervasive in our society. For example, if a friend makes a negative comment about their own or another person’s body (we call this “fat talk”), you might respond by saying “I don’t think that physical appearance is something we should be focusing on; there are so many other important things to think about like (relationships, school, work, personality, etc.).” Also, when you compliment others, focus on qualities that don’t relate to appearance.

Another way to help is to get involved in the Body Project, a peer-led interactive and discussion-based activity program. This community promotes body acceptance activism and healthy body image by challenging society’s “appearance ideal.” The Body Project has been shown to be very helpful in improving body image and reducing unhealthy dieting. For more information, please contact Chris Meno at or Anna VanMeter at and follow the Body Project (TwitterInstagram, Facebook).

We know that society’s focus on appearance and striving for “perfection” is both unrealistic and damaging to our health. Shift that focus. Let’s celebrate what our bodies can do rather than worry about how they look, this week, and every week.

Need more help? Check out COPE.

Ask Big Red Your Sexual Health Questions

College students love to talk about sex, but as soon as they have a serious question about it – the talking stops. Sure, Google can direct you to topics ranging from common STI symptoms to the most popular sex positions for 2017, but there are some questions that Cosmo, or even WebMD, can’t answer.

As such, we’re introducing a new friend to IU’s campus – Big Red: our all-knowing, all-accepting condom cartoon mascot. Through Big Red, we hope to get the conversation started and create a trustworthy place in which IU students feel comfortable asking ANY sex-related question, 100% anonymously!

Have you ever wondered…

  • How does birth control work? What about emergency contraception?
  • Does using lube make it less likely I’ll get pregnant?
  • Why doesn’t my girlfriend orgasm?
  • What’s a female condom?

Questions like these and many others can be asked at Selected answers will be posted on Thursdays on our Twitter and Facebook pages. Questions and answers can also be found on our dedicated Ask Big Red page.

So, who’s behind this all-knowing “Big Red” condom?

The woman behind the scenes (you thought this little guy was voiced by a man?!) is Heather Eastman-Mueller, the IU Health Center’s Assistant Director of Sexual and Reproductive Health. Heather earned her Ph. D. at the University of Missouri and has over 20 years of experience teaching and researching in the field. An IU alumna herself, she is thrilled to be back on campus educating students on sexual health. Ask Big Red, and let Heather share her Sex Talk Intelligence (the only good kind of STI!) with you.

For an additional opportunity to ask your questions, join us at Cupcakes and Condoms on February 28, where a booth will be dedicated to Ask Big Red.

Cook with Katie – Mac and Cheese, Adulting Style!

By Katie Shepherd

Macaroni and cheese. We all love this warm, cheesy inviting dish that brings back memories of childhood and home. Sadly, all too often, this dish is loaded with butter, excessive amounts of cheese, and (especially if you are making the packaged variety) very little in terms of actual nutrition.

Recently, I’ve seen some recipes floating around for butternut squash mac and cheese, and the nutritionist in me just had to try it out myself. I tweaked some of the versions I found online to suit my own personal taste, and this is what I came up with:

Katie’s Mac and Cheese: Adulting Style

This version of mac and cheese has no butter, almost an entire butternut squash, and greek yogurt for additional protein. To my surprise, I didn’t miss the butter, and the veggies more or less just added color and texture to the cheesy mix. It tasted good! Now that you’re all in college and adulting, it’s about time to ditch the Easy Mac and find a healthier, more sophisticated alternative.

Now let’s get cooking! Using a sharp knife, slice one butternut squash down the middle and scoop out the center. Next, peel the squash with a paring knife and cut into cubes. You will need 4-5 cups of cubed squash. For me, this ended up being about ¾ of the whole thing. (You might try adding more, but I was worried about it tasting too ‘squashy’ on my test run, so I stuck with this.) Next, boil the squash in 1 ½ – 2 cups of vegetable or chicken broth (buy two cans!). Use just enough liquid to cover the squash in your pot. Next, simmer 20-25 minutes until tender.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. While the squash is cooking, you can prep the rest of the dish! Set another pot of water to boil and cook one pound of elbow macaroni until it’s al dente (that means firm to the bite, but not mushy). This usually takes around 7-9 minutes. Then, grab an (approximately) 9×13 glass baking dish. Coat it with cooking spray or spread about one teaspoon of oil in it to evenly coat the dish. Next, mix together 1 ½ cups milk, ½ cup plain greek yogurt, ½ teaspoon dry mustard, and ½ teaspoon of salt. (You can skip the dry mustard if it’s not already in your pantry or you’re not a fan!). You can use any type of milk or yogurt that you prefer, but I used 2% for both. I was afraid using low-fat or nonfat would make it less creamy, especially since we eliminated butter. Fat for texture is a good idea here!

Next, the cheese mix! I used one cup each of white sharp cheddar, italian blend, and parmesan. The cheddar and parmesan provide savory flavor and the italian blend is mostly mozzarella, which melts nicely to provide a smooth texture. You can use whatever cheese you like though–using all three kinds is not required.

Once your squash is tender, use a blender to puree that mix. Mix this, the milk/yogurt mixture, and the cheese mixture with your cooked macaroni in a large bowl then spread it into your greased baking dish. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake in your preheated oven for 20-25 minutes.

This recipe makes a large pan so I’d suggest having some friends over to eat or taking it to a party! Alternately, you can freeze leftovers in individual containers to have on hand during busy parts of the semester! To make this a complete and balanced meal, pair with a green vegetable, like broccoli, green beans, or a nice salad.

Want to learn more about adulting beyond cooking? Check out Adulting IU, our new student wellness coaching program (and a sweet massage giveaway) here!

Valentine’s Day Sweetheart Massage Package Available!

Looking for that perfect Valentine’s Day gift for your sweetheart? The IMU Wellness Center is offering a relaxation gift package!

This $75 package includes:

  • 45-minute table massage
  • 30-minute aromatherapy session with essential oil sample included
  • 45-minute progressive muscle relaxation and guided visualization session

Walk over to the IMU Wellness Center (Indiana Memorial Union, Mezzanine M005), or call 812-856-4468 to purchase yours! This offer is available to students, employees, and the public. Certificates expire one year from the date of purchase.

This Week in Wellness at Wells: Condom Races, Aromatherapy, Dogs, and More!

Our therapy dog, Hoosier, will be joining us again this week! We hear he might be in costume!

Wellness at Wells is in full swing!

What’s that, you ask? Wellness at Wells is an opportunity to explore your health in the Wells Library Learning Commons (room 138) every Wednesday from 1:00-3:00 p.m.

This week’s activities feature free aromatherapy, sexual health consent condom races and games, free condoms, therapy dog petting, giveaways, and more!

All activities are available to students who complete the 5-10 minute walk-in wellness assessment with a certified wellness coach onsite!

Did you start off the New Year with a resolution you’re already struggling to meet? Still eating fast food daily, splurging on your credit card, or skipping class? (Gulp…)

IU Health Center’s Adulting IU Student Wellness Coaching might be for you–and there’s now free stuff involved!

That’s right, our Student Wellness Coaching gift package promotion continues! Sign up for your first wellness coaching appointment and receive a free gift package! The package includes a 45-minute table massage, a 30-minute aromatherapy session (with sample!), and 60-minute introduction to biofeedback session, valued at $95! Services can be used upon the completion of your first two wellness coaching appointments at IU Health Center.

Walk-in Counseling Services Available to Multicultural Students

College students can have many stressors–academics, relationships, depression, anxiety, and more. With the recent political changes to our country, there are new crises in the lives of our students with diverse and multicultural backgrounds. International students, especially those from countries highlighted in the recent executive orders, face tremendous uncertainty and confusion. Racism and fear are on the rise. Fortunately, support abounds on the Indiana University Bloomington campus.

“At Indiana University, we embrace openness to the world. This has long been a hallmark of great global universities such as ours that seek to attract the best students, scholars and researchers from every country and champion the cause of greater cultural understanding,” said President Michael A. McRobbie in a recent statement. “The directives contained in this executive order will have a considerable impact on IU’s international students and scholars, many of whom are feeling frightened and unsettled, interfering with their travel plans and other commitments.”

If you identify and need someone to talk to in this regard or for other general stressors, a “Let’s Talk Now” consultant or counselor is an excellent place to start.

What’s Let’s Talk?

As a student, you may confront issues in and out of the classroom that affect your ability to succeed in both your personal life and the classroom. Often it can help to talk to a willing ear. Other times, you may need more advanced help. Either way, Let’s Talk has you covered with two programs:

  • Let’s Talk Now is a free and confidential informal conversation with an emphasis on self-understanding and finding solutions to your problems. In addition to your walk-in conversation, Let’s Talk Now connects you to other accessible campus resources, both informal and formal.
  • Let’s Keep Talking is for when you do need more than just a friendly chat. Professional counselors are available to meet and address any more complex issues.

Who’s talking?

Our diverse group of consultants and counselors come from Indiana University Health Center’s Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) and the School of Education’s Department of Counseling and Educational Psychology.

What’s the first step?

Drop in during scheduled hours at any of our six locations to talk informally with a Let’s Talk Now consultant about anything at all. It’s free and confidential!

Counselors are available to talk–not judge–and there’s no pressure to continue beyond this initial conversation.

Hours and Locations for Let’s Talk Now:

  • Asian Culture Center: Wednesdays 1:00-3:00 p.m.; Thursdays 12:00-2:30 p.m., 4:30-7:00 p.m.
  • First Nations Educational and Cultural Center: Thursdays, 2:00-5:00 p.m.
  • La Casa, Latino Cultural Center: Tuesdays, 1:00-3:30 p.m.
  • Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center: Thursdays, 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
  • Office of International Services: Fridays, 9:00-11:30 a.m.

Let’s Keep Talking hours and locations can be found at

Cook with Katie–Slow Cooker Soup

Now that the weather is cooler (I can’t believe it’s taken this long to be able to say that!), I love to bring out my slow cooker (a.k.a. Crock-Pot) to make some hearty stews and soups for winter.

Why do I love slow cookers? #1—they are easy! You can throw all of your ingredients into one pot in the morning, turn to low, and when you arrive home in the evening, dinner is ready and your house smells amazing! The other reason I love slow cookers is for health reasons. Cooking food at a low temperature for long periods of time is a great way to retain nutrients. Some nutrients are heat-sensitive and cooking for short periods of time over high heat (such as grilling or baking in a very hot oven) can destroy them.

Today’s recipe is a slow cooker curry lentil soup. I love lentils because they’re a cheap source of protein (my one pound bag was just $1.89), and any kind of legume/lentil (think kidney beans, black beans, etc.) is a great source of soluble fiber–important for managing healthy cholesterol. Lentils on their own can be a bit……….bland, but fortunately, they will take on the flavor of whatever you cook with them. This recipe certainly does not lack in flavor with all of the spices and veggies that we will be adding!

For this recipe, I’ve chosen two curry powders. The first is a traditional curry powder, which is primarily made from turmeric. Turmeric gives the soup a bright yellow hue (be careful, it will also stain anything and everything).

As you’ve probably already guessed, there’s a health benefit, in addition to it being tasty! Turmeric contains curcumin, a phytonutrient classified as a ‘polyphenol.’ I know, big words, right? No need to memorize the fancy terminology; the big take away is this–phytonutrients are naturally occurring chemicals found in plants that reduce inflammation. Long-term inflammation can lead to chronic diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, metabolic syndrome, and cardiovascular disease. Additionally, phytonutrients in fruits, vegetables, and spices contain antioxidants. Antioxidants are components that reduce the formation of free radicals in our bodies. Fewer free radicals may reduce risk for developing cancer.

The other spice blend in this recipe, garam masala, contains a variety of spices, one of which is cinnamon. Cinnamon, like turmeric, is also an anti-inflammatory and may help regulate healthy blood sugar. In a nutshell, these spices do more than simply flavor food. They really can benefit your health!

Now, let’s get cooking!


Katie’s Slow Cooker Curry Lentil Soup

  • 6 cups of reduced sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup of green or brown lentils
  • 6-8 baby carrots (or 1-2 whole carrots), sliced
  • 2 stalks of celery, sliced
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of yellow curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon of garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cups of chopped fresh spinach
  • 1 wedge of lime

With the exception of the chopped fresh spinach and wedge of lime, combine and stir all ingredients in a slow cooker.  Cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-5 hours. Don’t open the lid during the cooking process!  This will just make the cooking time longer!

When your time is up, stir in the chopped fresh spinach and squeeze lime juice. Stirring the spinach in at the end rather than the beginning will keep the green hue nice and bright and won’t make for a mushy texture. Additionally, using a small squeeze of citrus adds a nice touch of acidity.

This recipe makes four servings. If you’re cooking for one or two people, it will heat up nicely the next day for a great lunch. I paired my soup with a slice of whole grain rye bread.

Bon Appetit!