Teens Going to Dangerous Extremes to Get Toned

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By Aimee Burnett

Twin Falls, Idaho (KMVT-TV) A new study reveals a shocking trend in teen behavior.

Some teenagers are going to extremes to get the body they desire.

New research finds most teens want a fit, toned physique, but, unfortunately a growing number are using unhealthy behaviors to get one.

As personal trainer Eric Snow explains, he's seen an increase of not only high schoolers hitting the gym, but also junior high students.

"We've had an influx of those looking not only to be in on the cardio equipment, but in the weight room as well," said Snow, YMCA.

A recent survey of about 2, 800 Minnesota teens found that nearly all boys were doing something to increase their muscle mass.

For most, it meant exercising , but eleven percent had used a muscle enhancing substance, such as Creatine in the last year.

And, six percent said they'd used steroids in the past year.

"Obviously with the push of Hollywood and with all the athletes and just being able to see that a lot of kids are trying to go towards that look,” said Snow.

Steroid use is obviously risky. There's a wide array of side effects, some with deadly consequences.

"Typically what we see is it can produce diabetes, cataracts in young individuals, we see irritability, stomach ulcers," said Kurt Hefner, Pharmacist, Kurt’s Pharmacy in Twin Falls.

Boys aren't the only ones with the desire to tone up.

In next month's issue of the journal 'Pediatrics' almost two-thirds of girls report they exercise specifically to gain muscle and nearly five percent reported using steroids and other muscle enhancers.


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