We’re often very aware of the benefits of exercise both to our physical and mental health. But with everything else going on in life it can be challenging to keep up a routine.
Getting into the habit of exercising is worthwhile at any age. However, it’s particularly good for younger people, not only for their immediate health but also to build good fitness levels for life.
The National Guidelines for Physical Activity in Ireland recommends young people are active for at least an hour daily. It’s suggested that activity is moderately to vigorously exerting, anything from brisk walking to team sports.
For more information go to Get Active
According to the Irish Heart Foundation one in five teenagers and two in five adults are overweight in this country. One in four adults and one in ten children are classified as obese.
They state that being overweight and obese is the most common childhood disorder in Europe.
A lack of physical activity coupled with increased consumption of high fat and high sugar foods has made a major contribution to the number of overweight young people in this country.
Numerous studies have reported many young people are dissatisfied with their weight and have a distorted view of their body image. It’s suggested that current social pressure to conform to an ‘ultra-slim’ image may contribute to young people’s dissatisfaction with their weight.
The fear of being overweight, and eating behaviours that go along with it (skipping meals, fasting etc.) are often associated with low intakes of important nutrients.
More serious eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia and binge eating can develop.
If you’re concerned your son or daughter may have an eating disorder, Bodywhys, the national organisation supporting people affected by eating disorders provides information and support.