High rates of obesity found in student athletes
The Athlete Health Organisation, is a non-profit organisation, that provides free participation evaluations for students before the start of each season to identify who might be at risk of illness or injury; these predominantly take place in Philadelphia. Researchers at Thomas Jefferson University have examined the most recent findings and produced a research paper on them. During each examination physicians gather biometric information and perform an electrocardiogram. The tests have been occurring for over 4 years and a variety of life-threatening conditions have been identified in a handful of students.
The most recent analysis has found high rates of obesity and high blood pressure in the student athlete population. 20% of participants were overweight, 24% were obese and 14.8% had high blood pressure readings. Although the general presumption is that sports and activity should help with weight and blood pressure control, this study has shown that this may not be the case in Philadelphia. The authors are hoping to continue their research to figure out why these effects have taken hold and to raise awareness of health issues affecting the student athlete population.