The common thought is that we do not have to worry about diabetes, heart disease or other similar health risks until later in life. Should we really be waiting until the “Middle Ages” to try and prevent these diseases though? If we let this pattern continue, our youth—our children and adolescents—may follow along. Is there any benefit to taking beneficial, preventive measures earlier in life?
A recent finding published in the journal Pediatrics found remarkable benefits when adolescents stay active to maintain good muscle strength. According to the findings, adolescents with greater muscle strength had
· less overall body fat
· better cardiorespiratory fitness
· smaller waistlines
· are considered less likely to have a high body mass index (BMI)
· a lower risk of heart disease and diabetes.
The benefits don’t end there. A recently published study found that physical activity at a young age increases bone health—increased bone mass and size which contributes to overall bone strength. Interestingly, the researchers followed study subjects into their 80’s and found that these benefits continue with age.
Adolescence is a Window of Opportunity
Another common though (and myth) is that it is not safe for adolescents to engage in exercise. Numerous professional health and fitness groups, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American College of Sports Medicine, the National Strength and Conditioning Association, and the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine all agree that strength training exercise can be safe and beneficial for children and adolescents when supervised.
Encouraging a healthy eating and physical activity at a younger age is not too early. It’s the best time to start. Why? Adolescence is a time when teenagers begin to gain more independence regarding their personal choices. It will be easier for your teen to learn a good, useful habit now than to break a bad one and learn a good one later on.
Doctors do not have to be the only people encouraging our youth to build healthy habits. As a parent, guardian, teacher, or coach, you can accomplish a lot by word and example to help adolescents build a routine that is healthy and safe for their age. We are always thinking about the future of our youth. Why not set them up for success by helping them do what they can to prevent diseases such as cancer, hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes!
ProEnergy Whey Protein Powder is a healthy source of lean protein that can benefit many teenagers who want to improve strength and endurance. It helps keep blood sugar levels stable. Our protein powder is organically sourced and has 100% natural ingredients that easily mix into a tasty drink.