Healthy Lifestyle Guidelines for Youth and Young Adults (part 1)

Lifestyle

The following health behavior recommendations and resources were chosen to help identify specific goals for youth and young adults to improve healthy lifestyles.

They were selected from science-based sources and target these following areas:

The following recommendations are organized into those that are appropriate for youth (children and adolescents), and those that are more relevant to young and older adults.

  1. Physical Activity

Youth

Youth should spend one hour or more on physical activity daily.

  • Aerobic: Most of the one hour or more per day should be moderate or vigorous-intensity aerobic activity, including vigorous-intensity physical activity 3 days or more per week.
  • Muscle-strengthening: As part of their 60 or more minutes of daily physical activity, children and adolescents should include muscle-strengthening physical activity on at least 3 days of the week.
  • Bone-strengthening: Daily physical activity of children and adolescents should include bone-strengthening activity on 3 days or more of the week.

It is important to encourage children and adolescents to take physical activities which are enjoyable, appropriate for their age, and offer variety.

Young Adults/Adults

Young Adults/Adults need at least:

  • 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity like brisk walking per week.
  • Muscle-strengthening activity on 2 or more days per week to work all major muscle groups including legs, back, hips, chest, shoulders, abdomen, and arms.

or

  • An equivalent mixture of vigorous-intensity and moderate aerobic activity.
  • Muscle-strengthening activity on 2 or more days per week to work all major muscle groups including legs, back, hips, chest, shoulders, abdomen, and arms.

or

  • 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity like jogging or running per week.
  • Muscle-strengthening activity on 2 or more days per week to work all major muscle groups including legs, back, hips, chest, shoulders, abdomen, and arms.

10 minutes each time is fine.

We know that 150 minutes per week seems like a lot of time, but in fact, it’s not. That’s just about the same time amount you might spend watching a movie. The good news is that you don’t have to do all the activity at once. You can break it up into smaller chunks of time depending on what works best for you.

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