Aside from grades, self image is one of the highest concerns of high school students. It’s no shock that health and self image go hand in hand. I anonymously interviewed twelve students around campus in hopes to get some insight on their health. I was shocked by the answers that I received.
The interview was posted on the Class of 2018 Google Classroom for students to access voluntarily. To my surprise, my peers were much more involved in health and fitness than I thought. Because of documentaries such as Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution or Supersize Me, I was expecting less than enthusiastic responses from students.
Eight out of 12 students voted that they prioritize living a healthy lifestyle. While the results for promoting healthy living, the results staggered as far as self image. Responses ranged from 1 to 10, lowest to highest; the lowest score that was voted for was a confidence level of 3 out of 10, whereas the highest vote did hit the mark of 10.
So what does this mean?
There were only 12 people who volunteered to vote out of the 270 seniors that had the chance to contribute to the widespread data. Based on this anonymous study, it is hard to say whether or not I reached a diverse demographic. Could it be that the only people who voted were athletic students? It is still an unanswered question to what made students less inclined to give their opinion in this study.
Another question proposed was “How many times a week do you consume fast food?” Since our school is in a city predominantly ruled by convenience stores and fast food restaurants, it is no surprise that most students voted that they frequently consume fast food.
The downside to a rural area is that there are less progressive businesses in terms of health. While there are plenty of chain gyms, the access to local eateries with fresh food is sparse. According to my study, the problem is not the motivation and desire to be healthy, but the lack of convenience to live that life.
Overall, students are engaging in good life decisions in terms of well being. It is a relief that younger generations are more concerned with being active.
While it is Mental Health Awareness Week, it is important to not only educate students on the actions they can take to help others, but also important to give some of the solutions to leading a life of happiness and health.