What are the health trends among US students? Believe it or not, they are getting fitter, eating healthier and exercising more at least among college students.
This should not be a surprise, as I believe this drug is over-prescribed and ADD is over diagnosed but according to John Hopkins misuse of Adderall is on the rise in young adults between 18 and 25. Many college students use it focus and study all night.
So what has changed that college students are now getting fitter, eating healthier, and exercising more?
The advances in technology have brought about wearables such as Fitbit, which will record your exercise, how far, how long, and how many calories burned as well as your heart rate. It is a great tool to keep track of how you are doing with exercise.
There are plenty of sites like Family Doctor, Essay Republic and MyFitnessPal, that will allow you to keep a food journal for free. These sites even figure up the calories, fat, carbs, and more in your food. Add to that your Fitbit results and you now know exactly what you are eating, how many calories you are consuming and burning with exercise which allows you to figure out how many calories you need to cut back in order to lose or maintain your weight.
Many of the sites that offer food journals also provide meal plans. However, do not forget about the sites that deliver meals that you can cook yourself. If you need help choosing a healthy diet, you can find it here.
High school students
Among high school students, reports show that the use of alcohol, cigarettes, and many illicit drugs are down from what they were 5 years ago. However ECigarette and cigarette use have not declined, in fact use, of ECigarette is growing up.
High school students were found to be 13.9% obese and another 16% to be overweight.
The question is how do we address these health issues among high school students? We already have laws that require ID to purchase tobacco products, I think these need to be enforced better. I also wonder if we need to come up with a legal punishment for the underage smokers. No, I am not talking about giving them a permanent criminal record or even a juvenile criminal record but maybe they need to do community service for a set period of time for the first offense.
When it comes to alcohol the same applies except sorry they need to have a criminal record if they were caught driving or caused an accident. That goes doubly so if they caused an accident fatality or maimed someone because they had been drinking. Drinking also lowers a teenager’s ability to perceive the difference between right or wrong so if they have been drinking and engage in date rape they should not be excused because they are young.
When it comes to obesity that needs to start at home and continue with the school system. We cannot blame the school system if the parents do not help their child understand the issue of junk food and weight gain. The health hazards of weight gain as well. At the same time, having said that I do not think everyone should be stick thin either. Television seems to show our children if they want to be happy they need to be pencil thin like the movie stars. This is not true at all.
Parents also have to start at home and it needs to continue in school on educating our children against the use of alcohol and smoking. It needs to start preschool at home and continue on through high school. Starting at a younger age of instilling the bad side of alcohol and smoking, we may be able to cut the number of high school students who are using these substances.
One problem is as teens and young adults we tend to think we are invincible and nothing is going to harm us. This is a hard perception to quell with the younger crowd. Even when one of their classmates is involved in a fatal car accident due to alcohol or drugs, they still think that it will not happen to them. It is an issue all parents have to deal with and have been dealing with for centuries – how to convince the younger people they are not indestructible.
What do these trends tell us?
While teens are experimenting with alcohol, tobacco, and some marijuana during high school, they seem to turn the corner once they hit college. By age of 19, they begin to think about getting fit and staying healthy.
This trend seems to say that we really do not have as much to worry about when it comes to our young adults as one might think. It also would seem that if this trend continues work days lost to sickness, less chronic illnesses such as COPD or cirrhosis. This would also keep health care costs down, which is a big issue these days in the US due to The Affordable Health Care Act that President Obama penned into law even though it was voted against.
While we may have some minor worries with our high school teens, our young college students seem to have turned a corner and are becoming more responsible with their health.
I also believe that as technology advances that these trends will rise among both the young and old of the United States. Which is very encouraging for our nation as a whole; in the future, we will be far healthier.
BIO: Dante Munnis is a blogger and idea maker from Stockholm who is interested in self-development, web related topics and success issues. He shares ideas for students living a better life and building habits that stick. To get strategies for boosting your mental and physical performance. You can get in touch with Dan via Twitter.