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Wednesday, 07 January 2015 14:31

Teen Obesity: Focus On Healthy Behaviors

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A new study from Brigham Young University shows that overweight teens who successfully lost weight did so for health reasons, and not to impress their peers or parents.

BYU researchers looked at the success stories of 40 formerly obese teens, who lost an average of 30 lbs to achieve healthy weight and kept it off for a year. According to researchers, more than 60% of successful teens lost weight for health reasons ("intrinsic") rather than to impress their peers ("extrinsic").

Nearly all the teens said it was their own decision to lose weight, and that parents provided the most help by modeling healthy behaviors and providing healthy meals and snacks.

According to the study's lead author, psychologist Chad Jensen, "One implication is that parents should help to focus their teen on healthy behaviors for the sake of being healthy more than for social acceptance."

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