European diets for adolescents (under 16 years), adolescents (17-20 years) and some adults (under 25 years) have been found to be deficient in calcium, vitamin D, iron, folic acid and zinc (Sterlinko et al. 2012; O’Connor et al., 2009). Insufficient intake of vitamin B is associated with inferior immune and nervous system functions (Herbison et al., 2012); adequate levels of calcium and magnesium protect against type 2 diabetes (Villegas et al., 2009); higher levels of magnesium protect against metabolic disorders (He et al., 2006). Metabolic disorders are associated with obesity, elevated blood pressure, triglycerides, and low levels of low-density lipoprotein in the blood (Whitton et al., 2011). Low levels of low-density lipoproteins in the blood reduce the likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease. Increased fat mass is known to increase total body weight, builds up fat around the internal organs in the abdomen, and increases the amount of fat (lipids) in the blood, which increases blood pressure and increases the risk of coronary heart disease. So you need to control your total body weight to avoid health problems.
Eating habits, energy consumption – physical activity are several components that can help control body weight. However, according to an international project, only 23 percent of Lithuanian men and women responded that they spend at least 30 minutes 4 or more times a week doing sports (Pomerleau et al., 2000). Physical activity was encouraged by a physician (6.9% of respondents), family members (24.1%), and others (10.2%) (Pomerleau et al., 2000). Examining the data of Škėgienė et al. (2007), it was found that 46.3% of third year male students and 29.5% of female students had irregular feeding. Similarly, Stucco and Dabravolskij (2009), interviewing prospective health professionals, found that 89.5% of male students and 62.5% of female students report irregular feeding. Therefore, we believe that research into students’ physical activity and nutrition remains relevant, especially when future professionals are not concerned with physical activity or health. Gallagher and colleagues (2014) found a direct relationship between food supplement intake and increased physical activity. In the study, the subjects who consumed food supplements were also more physically active and their lifestyle habits improved. Therefore, we believe that the choice of food supplements and consumed foods influence the health changes associated with student lifestyle habits. Student research practice includes subjective settings: health, body weight, dietary supplementation (FFQ), nutrition (FFQ), and physical activity (IPAQ); and objective evaluations: anthropometric measurements (Omron BF 511), body fat calculations (Omron BF 511), waist and hip measurements, biochemical blood analysis (Spotchem TM EZ Sp – 4430 Arkray), dietary energy and intake determination of food components (Omron BF 511). These subjective and objective evaluations will lead to clearer and more reliable conclusions.
Period of project implementation: 2014-02-24 - 2014-05-24
Project coordinator: Kaunas University of Technology