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New Research Shows US Students’ Approach to Eating Healthy and Maintaining Mental Focus Differs from the Rest of the World

Recent research has revealed a clear imbalance between college students’ perceptions of a healthy lifestyle versus the reality – particularly when it comes to preparing for finals. The research was conducted on behalf of Yugo, the first global student housing operator created to enhance students’ experiences throughout and beyond university life. The research included a variety of health-related topics and gathered the opinions of more than 6,000 students across six countries, according to a recent press release.

Key findings of the survey include:

• US students are the worst at cooking at home – The study found less than 25% of US students cook seven or more healthy meals a week, compared to 29% in the rest of the world. Time (63%), money (57%), and the convenience of takeaways (31%) were cited as some of the biggest barriers to cooking. Female college students (33%) are more likely to eat a healthy breakfast than male college students, although on average women college students are (33%) less likely to cook while at school.

US students are more likely to grab a healthy snack such as a piece of fruit (47.2%) than fast food (30.6%) when they are stressed and short of time. Women students (31%) are more than twice as likely than men (14%) to grab a Snickers bar or a bag of Doritos.

• Confusion about what makes a healthy meal – A large percentage of US students compared to the rest of the world believe that the higher the number of calories (33%), salt (26%), and saturated fats (25%), the healthier the meal. Students with the least confusion were in Australia (29%) and Spain (25%).

• Opinions on how to keep the brain sharp for finals vary significantly – US students agree exercise (50%), more sleep (42%), and less fast food (31%) are key factors in mental preparation. Women are more likely to go to bed early than men (39%) while men are more likely than women to play computer games to aid in enhancing their mental focus for exams (45%). Surprisingly, 9.5% of US students will drink more alcohol to calm their nerves. Additionally, 23% of respondents believe that sex will help with studying and focusing their mind, but 10% take the total opposite view and will abstain from sex during finals.

Yugo is focused on improving the quality of life for students through its Live Your Best Life program, ensuring students are supported throughout their university experience, to the transition to working life and beyond. Through this initiative, students have access to a number of support networks and group sessions to improve their holistic living.

Abby Bentley, Global Brand and Marketing Director said: “At Yugo, our core pillars were developed by students, for students. Supporting the holistic needs of our students is our top priority and we are constantly striving to improve the ways in which we operate. This research helps us to understand those specific areas, be it through extra-curricular educational courses, training sessions, or even peer support groups. Our unique pillars of YugoEco, YuPro and YuGrow are constantly evolving to meet the changing needs of today’s students, ensuring we are always there to support them.”

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