This week, I wanted to share an interesting segment on our nation’s current healthcare status. Also, I have two guest blogger’s, Amanda Kidd and Marina Salsbury discussing tips on obesity issues with college students and factors that may affect our weight.
1) Healthcare Uncovered (source: The Boston Channel)
2) College Obesity
By: Marina Salsbury
Obesity is becoming an increasing problem in adults and children throughout the United States. As our culture becomes faster- and faster-paced and technology use rises, adults are finding less time to exercise or to cook healthy food while spending more time sitting at desks. College students are often thought of as an active demographic, but in reality they spend quite a bit of time sedentary in lectures, in dorm rooms completing online college classes, and hours reading in libraries. Troubling statistics show that up to one third of college students are struggling with obesity, and many aren’t making healthy choices to combat this statistic.
Obesity is not the same as being overweight. “Overweight” simply means weighing more than is recommended given one’s height and weight. It could be due to an excess of fat, muscle, or even water weight. On the other hand, obesity is an excess of body fat occurring when one consumes more calories than one burns off.
College students’ lifestyles lends themselves to obesity if healthy habits aren’t instituted. There are a number of reasons for this. First, students may no longer be eating three healthy meals each day as they were when living at home. Skipping breakfast is disastrous since the student will be hungry all day and will turn to unhealthy food choices to satisfy hunger. Secondly, some college students eat a large amount of junk food filled with empty calories. Soda, chips, candy bars, and alcohol are all high-calorie foods without much other nutritional value.
Thirdly, stress leads to eating. College students certainly find themselves under a great deal of stress from packed class schedules, hectic work environments, and unrelenting deadlines. Many students turn to comfort foods, which are often high in carbohydrates, fats, and calories instead of other healthy options to provide energy-laden minerals and protein.
Fourthly, a great many students are unable to find time for exercising. Without a daily routine, students find they’re simply too tired to exercise, have too many other activities, or are fighting peer pressure to party instead. Regular exercise is critical to health in youth as much as later in life, but college-age students often fail to realize this until they encounter serious health problems.
Students need to be warned that this issue is about more than just body image and self-esteem. While it is true obesity can greatly affect these social and psychological aspects, there are a number of other long-term consequences to obesity. Obesity can negatively affect the reproductive system, the weight-bearing joints of the body, and may even cause problems such as gallbladder disease and frequent heartburn.