Skip to content

COVID-19 (Coronavirus): Updated information and resources from IDEA

Patricia Ryan

Patricia Ryan, MS, develops educational content for leaders and professionals in the wellness, fitness and older-adult marketplaces. Ryan has conducted market research and authored numerous white papers, survey reports, industry analyses and research reviews along with producing educational webinars. She holds a master’s of science degree in instructional technology aimed at designing professional education. She was IDEA’s first editor in chief and developed the Gold Standard of content for which IDEA is still known.

Article Archive

Weight Loss Strategies

Popular Weight Loss Strategies Stand the Test of Time

March 30, 2020

How many times during a week do clients tell you they want to lose weight or talk about what they are doing to change their body weight? Among 48,026 U.S. residents over the age of 20 who answered the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey in 2015–2016, 42% responding said they were actively trying to lose weight.

Read More
Whole grains

Good News for Whole Grains

March 30, 2020

The average American Heart Association healthy-diet score for U.S. adults improved between 2003–2004 and 2015–2016, according to the AHA Statistical Update 2020. Two scales were used to measure diet quality. On one of them, scores for a poor diet decreased from 56% to 47.8%; on the second, poor diet prevalence dropped from 43.7% to 36.4%.

Read More
Lifestyle and Longevity

Lifestyle and Longevity Go Hand in Hand

March 30, 2020

When it’s likely that you are going to live into your 80s and 90s, isn’t it a good idea to work toward a healthy life span? Five lifestyle choices—the ones fitness professionals regularly recommend—may help you do it, according to a new analysis published online in the BMJ.
In this prospective cohort study, 73,196 women in the Nurses’ Health Study (34 years of data) and 38,366 men in the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (28 years of data) reported their adherence to the Alternate Healthy Eating Index; how often they engaged in moderate-to-vigorous exercise for at least 30 minutes per day; whether they maintained a body mass index of 18.5–24.9 kg/m2; whether their alcohol intake was moderate (up to one serving per day for women and up to two for men); and whether they smoked.

Read More
Smart Snacks Program

Fresh Food and Vegetables Appear in Schools

March 30, 2020

Back in 2013, the U.S. Department of Agriculture released the Smart Snacks in School standards, which aimed to reduce fat and sugar in students’ diets by encouraging schools to provide healthier snacking choices like whole grains, low-fat dairy, fruits, vegetables and leaner protein. The standards were put in place after research indicated that schools which offered foods and beverages containing solid fats and added sugars were helping to add “empty calories” to youngsters’ diets. Consuming empty calories can increase overall energy intake, leading to overweight and other health conditions.

Read More
Mediterranean diet

The Med Diet Stands the Test of Time

March 30, 2020

Among 250 healthy, overweight adults participating in a randomized controlled study, more than half (55%) went for IF (restricting intake 2 days a week), while 27% chose the Mediterranean diet (emphasizing whole grains, fruit and vegetables), and 18% opted to go Paleo (modified to allow some legumes and dairy). Participants also chose whether to try high-intensity interval training or a standard exercise regimen. After a brief educational session on their chosen diet, they completed assessments of their food intake, biometric measures and physical activity; these assessments were repeated at intervals.

Read More
Cooking shows for kids

Cooking Shows Educate Kids on How to Eat Better

March 30, 2020

Demonstrating how to cook healthier foods was an effective way to teach kids about nutrition, found a study of 125 children, ages 10–12 years, who watched cooking shows in the classroom. For comparison, one group of the children watched video clips of a program showing how to cook healthier foods while another group watched the same show featuring unhealthy foods. Afterwards the children were offered a snack.

Read More
Optimism and Food Choices

That Half-Full Glass Tilts Toward Better Eating

March 30, 2020

A new report in Nutrition Journal reveals that dispositional optimism—expecting that more positive things will happen in the future—may lead to better food choices. At baseline and every 6 months, 19,335 volunteers participating in France’s NutriNet-Santé study completed at least three online 24-hour diet records (2014–2018).

Read More
Nutrition research

Online Nutrition Searches Follow Food Trends

March 30, 2020

It’s rewarding to see that some people are searching reliable sources of nutrition information rather than blindly following the fads and opinions littering the online world. The American Society for Nutrition, which publishes four peer-reviewed journals, released a list of ASN articles that received significant press coverage and sharing on social media (some had well over 1,000 tweets).

Read More
Ultraprocessed food

More Evidence That Ultraprocessed Foods Lead to Obesity and Diabetes

March 30, 2020

What do residents of the United States have in abundance? In supermarkets and food outlets, Americans have easy access to ultraprocessed foods prepared using industrial techniques; for example, soft drinks and candies, powdered instant soups or noodles, various “nuggets” and pre-prepared meat, and pizza dishes.

Read More
Mobile App and Weight Loss

Mobile Apps Aid Weight Loss

March 30, 2020

Mobile phones are a cozy home for apps with a range of functions, from calling for a ride to recording diet and exercise histories.

Read More
Chili peppers and heart health

Chili Peppers for Heart Health?

March 30, 2020

People who are fond of adding hot chili peppers to their stews and sauces may be adding to their heart health. Among 22,811 women and men living in southern Italy, 24.3% regularly ate chili peppers four or more times a week. These peppers are part of the Mediterranean diet.

Read More

Employment Opportunities in Senior Living

September 21, 2011

You’re passionate about the value of fitness in a wellness lifestyle. You’ve educated yourself on exercise science and leadership. Perhaps your training is in yoga, Pilates, tai chi or another approach. Now you’re ready to help others gain the benefits of your knowledge. It’s time to get to work.

Read More

Special Programs for Special People

December 31, 2006

The people who seek the services of fitness businesses approach with a variety of goals and physical capabilities. A person can fulfill multiple “types” by being, for example, an amateur athlete, apparently healthy, with a chronic injury. A person with physical disabilitie…

Read More

Personal Training (data from the 2005 IDEA Programs & Equipment Survey)

March 31, 2006

IDEA Survey
By Patricia Ryan, MS

Personal Training
When it comes to the number of trainers you have and the quantity of sessions they conduct, how does your facility stack up to others? Since 88% of the businesses included in the 2005 IDEA Fitness Programs & Equipment Survey offer personal training, it’s no surprise that trainers appear in virtually all facilities. Personal training businesses ha…

Read More

Personal Training

March 31, 2006

Since 88% of the businesses included in the 2005 IDEA Fitness Programs & Equipment Survey offer personal training, it’s no surprise that trainers appear in virtually all facilities. Personal training businesses have the highest volume of sessions, running neck and neck with health clubs.
A few trainers conduct most of the sessions, particularly in personal training busin…

Read More