Nutritional Deficiencies among Adolescents
Challenges for Healthcare System
The individual’s behavior, education and knowledge about nutrition are important factors to be considered in healthy living. The study aimed to explore gender differences in awareness about nutritional deficiencies among university students. Six public and private universities of twin cities (Rawalpindi and Islamabad) were selected to collect data through a formal questionnaire survey. The research covered issues related to the awareness of well-being and health risks, perception and attitude towards health and nutrition, prevalence and knowledge about nutritional food and healthy lifestyle. The data was analyzed by using different statistical tests and the results of the study demonstrated a significant difference between male and female students regarding the awareness and knowledge of well-being and health risks behavior. The findings of the study indicated that female students have more awareness of health-related matters like nutritional value of food, perception of their physical social health status, avoiding health risk behavior and adopting healthy lifestyle for enhanced wellbeing. Although female students do not have breakfast and generally go to university with empty stomachs, which adversely affects their health as well as diminish their activities, they are more aware of the foods which are more nutritious and better for health. On the other hand, male students are involved in some risky health behaviors such as smoking and dietary irregularities. The male students were more frequently involved in health risk behavior like smoking, drinking, eating out etc. It has been recommended from the study that comprehensive health educational programs should be incorporated into educational institutions to promote optimistic health seeking behavior among students.
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