Working toward your fitness goals can have some great health benefits, but how much is too much? Extreme diets and fitness regimens are increasingly popular among those trying to achieve a better body—especially among one particular age group. A new national survey by Orlando Health found that millennials are most likely to use supplements and workout more than four times per week, something doctors warn could lead to unintended health consequences.
“We live in a culture where people want results fast, so a lot people think that if they push their bodies to the max or take all these supplements, they’ll reach their goals faster,” said Dr. Sijo Parekattil, a urologist at Orlando Health and co-director of the PUR Clinic. “Supplements are not regulated by the FDA, so not only is there no guarantee that what is on the label is in that product, but you don’t know how your body might react to the ingredients.”
Dr. Parekattil says supplements can interact with other medications, raise your blood pressure or even cause fertility issues, while intense workout schedules put a lot of strain on the body and may not be sustainable. To bring awareness to these potential dangers, Parekattil and his co-director of the PUR Clinic, Dr. Jamin Brahmbhatt, will hit the road for their 5th annual Drive for Men’s Health. The duo will drive 3,000 miles from New York City to Orlando, stopping in cities along the way to help men find a healthy balance in their daily routines. They hope to encourage men to make annual appointments with their doctors and open a conversation about male body image.
“Men may not talk about it, but they have body image issues just like women,” said Brahmbhatt. “It’s important for them to focus on being healthy rather than trying to look like bodybuilders or fitness models. Finding a sustainable routine is going to give them better results that they can maintain for the rest of their lives.”