Pay attention teens. Keep a check on your unhealthy eating habits and behaviour in advance, this may help you to reduce the risk of obesity later in life. As per the latest study, these pro-active measures can go a long way to keep obesity and related health issues away off. A new study states that junk food in a combination of unhealthy behaviours- sedentary lifestyle ups the risk of obesity in adulthood.

The researchers claim that instead of aiming at only food habits, parents, teachers and healthcare providers must encourage the value of healthy behaviour in adolescents. The study revealed that there was no change in the calorie intake among adolescents, but habits such as exercising, smoking, alcohol and drug use have drastically altered over time.

Rachel Laxer, a doctoral student at the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada claims that obese or overweight adolescents often keep their weight status into adulthood, elevating their risk of developing cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure.

Laxer noted that “Public health practitioners should be targeting clusters of risky behaviours using a comprehensive and multi-prolonged approach. The study was published in Plos One, the lead team included school students between 13 - 17 years of age, in class 9 & 10. Based on their reported behaviour, the teenagers were grouped as typical high school athletes, inactive high screen users (“screenagers”), moderately active substance users or health conscious.

The findings revealed that even though the four groups saw similar increases in their weight status over the years that they were monitored, students in the health-conscious group had the healthiest body weight at the start of the study. Intervening and evaluating unhealthy behaviours earlier might have a higher impact than during adolescence. Health supporting policies aiming at high-risk youth as they enter secondary school might be the best way to prevent or delay the onset of obesity, and might have enhanced public health outcomes over the long term, states the author.