Alcohol use, unhealthy eating signal youths’ sexual activity: study

Alcohol use, overall risky behaviour, and even unhealthy eating can be predictors of early adolescent sex, according to a new report.

The study, entitled Socio-Demographic, Health, and Lifestyle Factors Influencing Age of Sexual Initiation among Adolescents was carried out by a three-person team from the Health Promotion Research Centre in the School of Health Sciences at NUI Galway.

It looked at the relationship between socio-demographic, health and lifestyle factors, and the timing of first sexual intercourse among 15 to 17-year-olds, using data in the 2014 Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children Ireland study of 879 sexually active adolescents.

It found socio-demographic and lifestyle factors were stronger predictors of age of sexual initiation, that the onset of riskier behaviour generally was significantly related to age of sexual initiation for adolescents, while alcohol use/drunkenness and unhealthy food consumption was significant among girls only.

“While sexual intercourse itself is not necessarily a risk behaviour, it may represent a

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