Both teenage boys and girls are engaging in muscle-enhancing behaviors far more than previously known, according to a study published online last month in the journal Pediatrics.
Researchers from the University of Minnesota and Columbia University examined data from 2,793 youths at 20 urban middle and high schools taken during the 2009-10 school year. They set out to determine the prevalence of five muscle-enhancing behaviors: changing eating habits, increasing exercise, and using protein powder, steroids, or other muscle-enhancing substances.
Almost all students reported doing at least one of the five behaviors. Nearly 12 percent of boys and 6.2 percent of girls said they engaged in three or more of the five practices.
A version of this article appeared in the December 05, 2012 edition of Education Week as Teenagers’ Health