Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Choosing a healthy food-style. Photo by Sonam Bhoneshwar.
Neglecting healthy eating options during youth can lead to illness later in life.

The major indifference among today’s youth is their easy lifestyle and large consumption of junk food easily available to them. This has worsened the healthy way of life which once prevailed, with a rise in health disorders and obesity. The number of youth who consume healthy food such as fruits and vegetables on a daily basis is reducing.

According to a survey, conducted among the students of Manipal University, Dubai; majority of the youth have inappropriate eating habits. Junk food has become the first preference for many at all times. There are comparatively very few people who consume foods which will keep them fit, and strengthen them physically and mentally.

The kind of routine which is being followed among the youngsters pertaining to what they eat, hinders their overall appearance as well as fitness. The outcome of the survey reveals  the average consumption of healthy foods varied widely among males and females.

Only 20% of males included fruits and vegetables in their diet on a regular basis. On the other hand, 80% of female respondents had fruits regularly, which was comparatively higher. One of the common reasons cited by students who had healthy foods was the influence and encouragement by their parents. 

Steffi Fernandes, one of the students says: “I think each one of us should make a point to consume fruits and healthy items in our daily lives. It helps the mind and body to stay fit and spares us from the troubles of early illness in our future.”

“Knowing the benefits of fruits, I still don’t eat them regularly, as I find them to be very dry and not appealing. I usually enjoy fruits if it’s combined with ice-cream or fruit juices, they just seem to be tastier” says Savio Dias.

Another problem which prevails among the students is smoking, which has been adopted by many since the age of 13 and so on. Be it a boy or a girl, smoking has become a sort of trend among the young people which slowly turns into an addiction. Almost all realise and understand the health hazards attached to smoking, but none seem to work towards leading a healthy and problem – free life.

Nikita, a student said; “I started smoking in 10th grade and since then it has become an addiction. Recently, I have been trying to control the habit but still continue to smoke less to keep the nicotine level up in my body.”

Another student Deepak says: “He is aware of the health hazards of smoking but is unable to control the habit. But I make sure to avoid smoking in front of non-smokers, to keep them away from any health issues.”

There have been many organisations, events, and special days dedicated towards making people realise the importance of their health. But ultimately, it depends upon every individual to have a reality check as soon as possible to save them from the harm they are causing to their health.

Report by: Sonam Bhoneshwar