BU Today

Health & Wellness

Challenging Unhealthy Habits

Sargent College offers advice on good nutrition, exercise, and safety to the BU community.”

"Every two weeks, participants in Sargent College’s Healthy Lifestyle Challenge receive an e-mail with a new challenge: “Make half your grains whole,” or “Trim down your turkey day.” 

Last year more than 1,500 people joined the Healthy Lifestyle Challenge, which encourages the University community to incorporate healthy habits into their everyday lives. BU students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends can register now for the 2007–2008 challenge, at www.bu.edu/sargent/challenge.

Participants will be sent a new challenge by e-mail every two weeks. They then log on to the challenge Web site and complete a survey about whether they made the lifestyle change. Every participant completing the survey will be entered in a biweekly raffle and invited to events. At the end of the challenge, they will receive a gift to celebrate their participation and success.

The challenges, created by Sargent College students and faculty, cover nutrition, exercise, and safety. Previous topics include iPod safety, healthful pizzas, and the health benefits of fun and laughter.

The number of people successfully taking the Healthy Lifestyle Challenge has increased every year since Sargent started the program in fall 2004. Last year 84 percent of participants completing the exit survey said they were able to incorporate healthy changes in their lives. More than two-thirds said the challenge encouraged them to make other healthy lifestyle changes as well, and 90 percent said they would participate in a similar challenge in the future.

“Sargent faculty and students have a significant wealth of expertise in many fields that apply to living a healthy lifestyle,” says Gloria Waters, dean of Sargent College. “We thought that it was important to share this knowledge with the greater BU community, but we wanted to do so in a fun and engaging way that would appeal to students, faculty, staff, and alumni.” 

Brian Sirman, a campus residence hall director, can be reached at bsirman@bu.edu.