Children Today Need To Eat Less And Exercise More

Kids-exercisingNx86xdrewssexybody-3By Kirsten Cowart

Whether it is lifestyle or genetics, the younger generation has different needs than those before them. For instance, generation Y needs less food and more exercise than previous generations in order to maintain a healthy weight.  

Generation Y consists of the people born during the 80s and 90s. When compared to their parents and grandparents, they have specific needs to stay healthy and avoid diseases such as obesity. The previous generations could exercise less and eat more food without becoming obese, according to a new study from York University’s Faculty of Health.

“Our study results suggest that if you are 25, you’d have to eat even less and exercise more than those older, to prevent gaining weight,” says Professor Jennifer Kuk from the School of Kinesiology and Health Science. “However, it also indicates there may be other specific changes contributing to the rise in obesity beyond just diet and exercise.”

Children Who Eat The Same Are 10% Heavier Than Their Parents Were

The study paid for by the Canadian Institute of Health Research looked at dietary data of around 36,400 American adults. Between 1971 and 2008, the National Health and Nutritional Survey collected this data. The physical activity data was collected between 1988 and 2006 from 14,419 adults.

We observe that for a given amount of self-reported food intake, people will be about 10 percent heavier in 2008 than in 1971 and about five percent heavier for a given amount of physical activity level in 1988 than 2006,” notes lead researcher Ruth Brown, a York University graduate student, who also added, “These secular changes may in part explain why we have seen the dramatic rise in obesity.”

The study showed “Secular differences in the association between caloric intake, macronutrient intake and physical activity with obesity.” This data will be featured in the next issue of Obesity Research & Clinical Practice.

Weight Management Is More Complex Than Simple Exercise And Diet

The researchers from this study found that, even if you lose weight from exercise and eating less, in the long term, you won’t keep the weight off.

“This is because weight management is actually much more complex than just ‘energy in’ versus ‘energy out’,” says researcher Kuk. “That’s similar to saying your investment account balance is simply your deposits subtracting your withdrawals and not accounting for all the other things that affect your balance like stock market fluctuations, bank fees or currency exchange rates.”

Lifestyle And Age Are Important Factors

Kuk also explained that our weight is influenced by our lifestyle, environment, what medications we take, environmental pollutants, when we eat, genetics, stress, bacteria balance in our gut and even nighttime exposure to light.

“Ultimately, maintaining a healthy body weight is now more challenging than ever.”

However, if you are young, try eating a little less and become more active and see if you start to feel healthier and trim the extra weight slowly over time.

What do you do to stay active and stay balanced? Let us know about your experiences in the comments below.


Source: York University. “Millennials, Gen Y need to eat less, work out more to stave off obesity, researchers say: The study results suggest that if you are 25, you’d have to eat even less and exercise more than those older.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 September 2015. <>.lleader_34 (1)

Kirsten Campbell
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Kirsten Campbell

Kirsten Cowart is a writer and researcher that has worked in the spiritual, mental health and medical fields.Kirsten enjoys studying and experiencing the benefits of yoga, meditation, nutrition, herbalism, organic gardening and alternative health.She worked hard in 2014 losing over 40 lbs. and has since maintained a healthy lifestyle.Follow her to learn more about her journey on Twitter, Facebook & Youtube!
Kirsten Campbell
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