People generally agree that healthy eating habits are essential to a healthy lifestyle. That’s not the only facet of being healthy, though. Many other elements contribute to a holistic lifestyle, including regular exercise, a good night’s rest, manageable stress levels, mindfulness and mental health.
It is easy to see how these categories can work together to promote a healthy lifestyle. However, the best path toward healthy living seems to change daily. What is the answer?
The online Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Health Studies and B.S. in Public Health programs at Arkansas State University (A-State) cut through the noise of the health and wellness market. Students in these programs graduate with the knowledge and tools they need to empower people on a sustainable path to a healthy lifestyle.
How to Prepare for a Career in Health Promotion
There was a time when sugar was said to have health benefits for children, with candy companies funding studies showing that “children who eat candy tend to weigh less than those who do not.” As research develops on nutrition and health, ideas adjust and change. From research studies to celebrities, many factors influence our dietary decisions — for better or worse. Similarly, countless fitness fads get attention but might not lead to a long-term commitment to healthy habits.
The field of health education takes an education-driven approach to improve health. A-State’s online B.S. in Health Studies program prepares students for a variety of careers with coursework that builds the skills employers seek. Students can prepare for roles like care coordinator, disability rights advocate and community health coordinator in courses that include such topics as:
- Educating and coaching patients on managing and preventing health issues and the impact of these practices throughout the lifespan
- Learning how advocates help patients navigate complex healthcare systems
- Exploring topics and trends in mental health, including major public health threats
- Developing teaching techniques for effective patient education and strategies for inspiring positive health behaviors
A-State’s online B.S. in Public Health program also provides practical and in-depth knowledge to kick-start a career in many settings. Students can prepare for roles like public health programs manager, epidemiologist and community health worker in courses that explore the following topics, among others:
- How to communicate effectively in healthcare settings, especially regarding patient-provider interaction
- Public health operations and trends, including key concepts, program planning, the use of biostatistics and means of intervention
- Examination of traditional, emerging and controversial issues regarding environmental health
- Global health concerns, to provide a comprehensive view of health patterns and challenges in various societies and cultures, including trends that could impact public health in the U.S.
Keeping Up With Current Trends in Health and Fitness
Research conducted by McKinsey & Company shows that most people think wellness is important. In fact, $1.5 trillion is spent globally on related products and services.
Pursuing a career in health education means keeping up with trends and research. Dietary supplements are one example. Americans spend almost $60 billion annually on vitamins, herbal products and other supplements. Health specialists can teach consumers to evaluate benefits and risks and make wise choices.
Top health and fitness trends to follow, based on a survey conducted by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), include:
- Wearable technologies, such as fitness trackers and heart rate monitor
- High-intensity interval training (HIIT)
- Functional fitness training
- Health and wellness coaching
- Outdoor activities such as hiking, biking and walking
- Exercise Is Medicine (a health initiative that promotes including physical activity in treatment plans)
Keeping up with the latest research is also helpful for health specialists. For example, when it comes to inspiring healthy lifestyles, learning that physical activity may improve brain function as you age may be a major motivator for people. Science Daily is a popular source for science news updates such as this.
A career in health studies or public health offers a unique way to positively impact people’s lives. There is also growing demand for professionals in these fields. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, health education specialist jobs should grow 12% from 2021 to 2031, much faster than the average for all occupations. A chance to inspire healthier lifestyles combined with long-term high demand makes a career in health education a solid choice.