Recently I conducted a health camp in a college, in which we did a Proper physical analysis of most of the student, we got a Data that amazed our team. This data was showing that out of 100 students there are only 2 students who were at their Ideal Body Weight rest all were extremely Under Weight. Under this camp, I did free health counseling to create awareness among the student. After this incident, I couldn’t resist myself to write about this growing problem.
Eat more or eat less, Eat this or Eat that…hell lots of confusion while having stress to attend back to back lectures and late night studies to prepare for the exam with the tough competition. It’s a busy life of college students where eating Junk foods or sharing your friend tiffin gives you best option to fill your tummy to attend the long lecture session. It’s a truth that happens with every college going students.
So here I am going to tell you the most common health issues that come to college going student’s life.
The main and very serious problem that I personally feel and some researchers are also showing the evidence, is UNDERNUTRITION.
Recent studies found over half of the college students had high levels of “food insecurity” which means due to low food availability and the high price of food make them stand at high risk of malnutrition.
Under Nutrition is a kind of Malnutrition, and increasing rapidly among the college going students due to the various reasons that will be covered under this Article. Under-nutrition in simple terms is lacking nutrition with low intake of calories and nutrients.
What are the various reasons for this rising problems??
We had a talk with students during that camp, after the analysis, we came to know that there are many of reasons due to which a major part of students are suffering from the Under- Nutrition, some of which are given here-
Time issue– Many of students said that we don’t get time to eat or to take a proper meal, due to back to back lectures, meanwhile they tend to eat less means not able to give enough calories to the body for nourishment.
To combat this problem always carry a fruit or healthy snack like protein bars in your hand or in your pocket so that while moving to the classroom you can have it.
Taste issue – Students generally tends to eat more of Junk food like Pizza, & other street foods. Eating this food for long may cause a change in your taste buds due to which you usually don’t like to eat homemade food which is healthy.
Without family- Number of Students live in PG, away from their family is very huge. Many of students say in PG there is fix the timing of breakfast or lunch, which many of times do not match with the timing of college due which they have to skip their meal like Breakfast.
Stress- The big factor stress that always acts as a best friend of most of the college students. The stress of being in time in the class, the stress of studies, submitting the projects or file, Exam tension that results in mood swings and tends to avoid eating.
High cost- As we all know that a big number of students comes from PGs & Hostels, with a limited amount of money with them to manage their expense. Under such condition, it becomes very difficult for students to manage proper meals.
What if not take care of Nutrition?
Undernutrition means fewer calories consumed, less nutrient intake that lead to underweight, and nutrient deficiency like vitamin A, Vitamin D, Iron Deficiency, that leads to further chronic diseases like Cataract, Osteoporosis, Anemia etc.
Health issues associated with Poor Nutrition-
- Underweight – Due to low calories intake a large number of students are at low weight than their Ideal body weight. In our health camp, we found most of the students on an average are 7-8 kg less than their ideal body weight.
- Nutrient Deficiency – Due to lack of nutrient most the students are having a nutrient deficiency as mentioned above like vitamin D, Iron Deficiency etc.
- Elevated Lipid Profile – Due to imbalance nutrition or improper meal students am have elevated lipid profile with low or high-Fat %.
- Low Muscle %- Due to lack of physical activity and protein in the diet, they generally have poor muscle mass.
- Bones disorders- Poor intake of calcium-rich sources is the reason for bones disorder. It generally starts with paining legs, not able to stands for long, or walk for long distances.
- Low energy Levels – As college students are not able to meet their energy need due to low food availability as the result of many reasons that mentioned earlier.
All these Health – Nutrition Factors affects their performance in classrooms and examination halls and further stages of life. So all dear students focus on Healthy Eating, try to manage your meals with the limited time and availability.