If you're constantly reaching for Advil, you might want to put the chips down and get off the couch. A new study by Norwegian researchers shows that unhealthy teens have significantly more headaches than their healthy and active peers.
According to the findings, excess weight, inactivity, and smoking are all unhealthy behaviors that increase the risk of recurring headaches. Those who exhibit more of those behaviors also tend to report more frequent headaches.
The study involved nearly 6,000 junior high and high school students living in the same Norwegian county from 1995 to 1997, and showed that one-third of the participants were fairly inactive, one-fifth were smokers and one-sixth were overweight. Compared to the healthy lifestyle group, the students reported 20-50 percent more headaches, especially as their factors increased.
So what's the point? Well, the research implies that lifestyle has a lot to do with headaches, whether they're recurrent, migraine, or tension-type. This means that instead of popping an over-the-counter pill, staying active, eating better and not lighting up could help keep those painful throbbing moments away. Sounds like a no-brainer, right?
What's even more interesting is that by finding associations between teen lifestyle and multiple kinds of headaches, researchers say that it's possible that these lifestyle factors could be related to other types of pain, too. Do you get migraines or other kinds of headaches? Do you think your health has anything to do with them?