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January 31, 2014

CSU WellFest teaches students healthy living

By Joshua Hoover

On Jan. 23, the Cleveland State Recreation Center hosted WellFest 2014 in the Student Center ballroom.

The event, designed to promote positive healthy living, was attended by a mixture of students, faculty and visitors not affiliated with Cleveland State.

Sophomore Alita Petrus, a film and technical theatre major, found out about the WellFest from a magnet placed in the mailbox of her dorm.

“The vendors here are really cool,” Petrus said. “More students should come out next year.”

Her roommate, freshman psychology major Jennifer Lis, said that she was dragged there, but she was glad that she came.

One set of services that were offered at WellFest was a variety of testing for different health concerns. St. Vincent Charity Medical Center provided free screening for both blood sugar and blood pressure. There was also free HIV screening available.

After the screening was completed, participants were given lists of ways to improve their results and keep healthy. If a problem was detected, St. Vincent’s was able to schedule a follow-up visit with a doctor immediately.

There were a variety of vendors there, ranging from bike vendors and stores dedicated to runners, to various health food chains, as well as several Cleveland State organizations.

One vendor that got a lot of attention was Nooma, a new sports drink company run by Cleveland brothers Brandon and Jarred Smith.

The Smiths both attended Gilmour Academy and were hockey players who decided that sports drinks needed to change.

“I realized I was drinking 500 calories of Gatorade a day,” Brandon Smith said. “I was also getting acid reflux.”

The Smiths went on to develop Nooma, a sports drink that has no citric acid in it, and only one gram of sugar per 11-ounce container while still providing the electrolytes found in other sports drinks.

The brothers believe in their product so much that they gave up their hockey careers, retiring early to focus on the development of the drink full time.

Though they haven’t gone national yet, their beverage is currently available at various gyms in Cleveland, and will be in Whole Foods and Heinen’s in a few weeks. The Smiths are also working on getting the Rec Center to carry it as well.

“You have to prove it in your backyard first,” Smith explained.