4.2. Well-being and health – young people’s perspective
Before researchers start talking about well-being and health, they want to begin by understanding exactly what these terms mean: we set out our understanding of these in section 2. But what do young people in Luxembourg understand from these terms? We looked into this, and determined that for them, health primarily means the absence of disease. Health is generally required for well-being, so young people view these two terms as being inextricably linked. However, young people understand that it takes more than just being healthy to feel well: good and well-functioning relationships with others, for example. Or the prospect of success in their professional and private lives.
The young people we surveyed did not feel at the mercy of their emotional and health situation. Instead, they felt that they could – and should – actively do something to boost their well-being and health: pay attention to healthy eating and getting enough exercise. Avoid harmful behaviour such as smoking or taking drugs. They sometimes allow themselves exceptions. In these cases, short-term well-being is more important than the desire to live healthily and avoid illness. However, all do know in principle what is good or bad for their health in the long term.