High school students set up patterns of behavior and make lifestyle choices that affect both their current and future health. Majority of high school students these days have health-related problems, like, obesity, and eating disorders in spite of, students taking nutrition classes in school.
The student’s choices are partially depend on social pressure to attain cultural ideals of thinness, gain peer acceptance, or assert independence from parental authority. These factors can lead to a eating disorder, which is an emotional and physical problem related to body weight, shape and fascination with food.
These days due to poor dietary intake, lack of nutrition and least physical activity, high school students suffer with several diseases, which later on develop into chronic diseases.
Some Causes and Common Diseases
Among high school students, being overweight is generally caused by lack of physical activity and poor eating habits. Students eat cafeteria and vending machine lunches that commonly include pizza, burgers, chips, soda, candy, and ice cream. These food are the cause for obesity. Being overweight increased the risk of dying by about one-third. Being obese more than doubled it.
Students who are overeating or have a binge-eating disorder are at risk for heart attack, developing high blood pressure and high cholesterol, kidney disease and/or failure, arthritis, bone deterioration, and stroke.
Sexual maturation and linear growth is affected by low dietary intake.
Most students with eating disorders such as bulimia (a disorder which people binge and purge by vomiting or using laxatives) or anorexia nervosa (a disorder in which people severely limit their food intake). These can lead to convulsions, irregular heartbeats, kidney failure, osteoporosis, and dental erosion.
A variety of breast cancer risk factors pertain to teens and are related to nutritional influence.
Good Habits Make a Difference
The dietary patterns of children are determined by social, psychological, and economic factors. Knowledge and good habits learned at an early age can be constant throughout life thus leading to a healthy life. Good dietary habits and little bit of physical activity can give the following advantages.
- A good diet and dietary habits help control weight, build lean muscles and joints, which will reduce the risk of chronic diseases.
- Physical activity will help students build and maintain healthy bones, muscles and joints and will also help control the blood pressure.
What Parents Can Do
Parents of high school students can help by modeling healthy lifestyle choices.