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Survey: Young Okinawans have developed bad lifestyles

Date Posted: 2003-08-02

Younger generations of Okinawans have acquired some unhealthy lifestyles. Thatís the result of a survey of contemporary Okinawansí life styles, which has found that younger folks have acquired some definitely unhealthy habits, while older people are increasingly kicking smoking and other unhealthy life styles and exercising more than ever. Okinawa Prefecture Health Promotion Council conducted the survey that was published Monday.

According to the survey, young people under 30 are drinking and smoking too much. Most of them do not eat a proper breakfast, and eat too much and the wrong kinds of food at other meals. Very few also engage in sports and physical activities. The council conducted the survey after Okinawa, which formerly touted having the nationís longest life expectancy of Okinawan men, dropped to 26th place among the prefectures. The council wanted to find out the reason behind the trend. Now that they know, and the big question is what to do about the results.

The council is urging schools, homes and workplaces to pay more attention to healthy life styles, and devise ways of promoting them. The same survey, however, found that men 40 and older have become more conscious about their health. They are eating better and healthier than before, they exercise, and have cut down drinking and smoking.

The council is now planning a campaign aimed especially at men in their 20ís and 30ís to promote healthier habits. The target is to bring Okinawan men back to the number one spot in life expectancy among Japanese men. Thatís the spot Okinawan women have never lost.

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