About 25 percent of soldiers had a mental health disorder before enlisting compared to 11.6 percent of the general population, Harvard researchers reported in the March 4 issue of JAMA Psychiatry . Eleven percent of Army soldiers likely met criteria for two mental health disorders prior to enlistment. “Some of the differences in disorder rates are truly remarkable,” study author Dr. Ronald Kessler, a health care policy researcher at Harvard Medical School in Boston, said in a statement . The study, along with two others published in the same journal issue, were part of the Army STARRS (Army Study to Assess Risk and Resilience in Service members).
Why Matthew McConaughey should win an Oscar for health
The bad news is that the same study, based on national surveys, showed no significant changes in obesity rates in older children or in most adults. In fact, obesity rates went up among women 60 and older. A third of American adults and 17 percent of youths are obese. Clearly, there is a lot of work to do. The dietary and physical activity behaviors of children and adolescents are influenced by many sectors of society including families, communities, schools, child care settings, medical care providers, and the food and beverage industries and entertainment industries.