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I AM in Iowa Adolescents Making Choices to Control Their Future Teen:Health, Relationship, Body and Sexuality
May 1

Follow us on Twitter!

Posted By iamincontrol | May 1, 2014

Want to find out when IAMincontrol has a new post?  Follow us on Twitter @IAMincontrolIA for tweets about our posts and events for teens.  Retweet to share your favorite posts with your friends!
Dec 1

Common Myths About HIV/AIDS & Poll Results

Posted By addie | December 1, 2016

Poll results are in and Iowa teens say they are educated about HIV and AIDS.

What do you know about HIV and AIDS? There is a lot of misinformation out there regarding the virus and its associated disease. Here are some common myths about HIV/AIDS:

  1. HIV can spread through touch, saliva, toilets, and the air. HIV can only be spread through blood, semen, vaginal fluid, and breast milk. You can safely kiss, hold hands, and share bathrooms with people living with HIV/AIDS without contracting the virus.
  2. You can get HIV from a bug bite. Even though bugs such as mosquitoes suck blood from people, HIV dies within the insect and cannot spread the virus.
  3. HIV cannot be spread through oral sex. Although the risk is smaller than sexual intercourse, it is still possible.World Aids Day concept.
  4. There is no risk of spreading HIV after an antiretroviral treatment. Although antiretroviral treatments lower the amount of virus in the blood, HIV can still be spread.
  5. If both people have HIV, condoms are not necessary. Since there are different strains of HIV, a person could become infected with a different strain of HIV that may be more drug-resistant and harder to treat.
  6. If both people tested negative for HIV, condoms are not necessary. The most common HIV test tests for antibodies that fight the virus. However, antibodies can take up to three months to develop. So someone could still have HIV even though they tested negative. Condoms also prevent other sexually transmitted infections (STIs), making them always a necessity.
  7. HIV/AIDS is a death sentence. Treatment for HIV/AIDS has improved over the years making it a fairly manageable disease in developed countries such as the United States. Most people in the U.S. with HIV/AIDS can now expect to live a more or less regular lifespan if the virus is detected early enough.

If you’re sexually active, using a condom is the best way to protect yourself from getting HIV/AIDS. Regular HIV testing is also a good idea. HIV testing is always performed confidentially (even if you are a minor) and many places will do it for free. Follow the link to find testing locations near you:

Nov 29

Transgender Awareness Month

Posted By addie | November 29, 2016

Vector modern transgender flag backgroundDo you ever think about your gender? Some people don’t because it feels natural to them. But others don’t feel that the gender assigned to them is the right one. Since it is Transgender Awareness Month, let’s talk more about the topic!

What does it mean to be transgender?

Gender identity is the natural sense of being male or female. When you think of yourself as a boy or a girl, you are thinking about your gender identity. Most people’s gender identity matches their anatomy. But people who are transgender don’t feel that their physical appearance matches their gender identity.

Society has norms about gender identity too. For example, there are norms for girls about how they should wear their hair and dress. Same thing for guys! But transgender people have a different sense of themselves. Some of them know that their gender is different from their body at a very young age. Others notice it during puberty or even later.

Transgender people feel mismatched with their bodies. Some people physically change their bodies with surgery or hormones. They do this to match the gender they really are. This is very expensive and takes a lot of time. Others just dress as the opposite gender and change their pronouns.

Are all transgender people gay?

No. Being transgender is about gender identity-the way you see yourself and the gender you identify with. Sexual orientation is about being gay or lesbian. It is about the people you are attracted to. Because gender identity is different from sexual orientation, a transgender person can be gay, bisexual, or straight – just like any other person.

To learn more visit:


Nov 24

Ways to Use Your Own Body to Work Out!

Posted By addie | November 24, 2016

Are you a teen that’s trying to get ripped? Lots of teens have trouble building muscle mass because 1) they don’t have gym equipment at home, 2) they can’t afford a gym membership, and 3) they have no way to get to the gym even if they could afford a membership!

Here are some workouts that you can do at home with your own body! Before we begin, let’s review some terms. Reps are the number of times you do a specific exercise, and sets are the number of cycles of reps that you do. For example, for the full body exercise below, you will do 15 jumping jacks five different times until you do a total of 75 jumping jacks. ALAP stands for as long as possible.

Screen Shot 2016-10-02 at 12.09.49 PM


There are so many more workouts that you can do! For more workouts and workout tips, visit:

Nov 22

Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes

Posted By addie | November 22, 2016

This year on November 24th individuals and families will be giving thanks and enjoying traditional Thanksgiving meals with family and friends. The holidays are also a time when we tend to “cheat” on our health goals- less exercise, more treats, and bigger portion sizes and meals. With these recipes swaps you won’t be missing out on any flavor or tradition but you will be missing the extra calories!

Yams and sweet potatoes (yes, they’re different!) are Thanksgiving staples, usually served as a sweet casserole with lots of marshmallows. These root veggies are rich in antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber and are considered a Fresh pumpkin soup and vegetablessuperfood. Check out this savory, delicious and healthy take on Thanksgiving sweet potatoes. Get the recipe here.

Cranberries are an excellent source of Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin C, Manganese and fiber. Instead of drowning your cranberries in sugar or purchasing sauce from a can made with ingredients you don’t even want to know about, try this recipe for sugarless cranberry sauce here.

Enough sides, it’s time for the main course. Eating turkey on Thanksgiving is a tradition that dates back to the very first Thanksgiving. Because turkey is a lean protein it is already healthier than other meats like beef, but they way you cook a turkey can drastically effect calorie content. Learn how to cook a healthier turkey here.

If you’re not in charge of the menu this holiday season, urge family members to keep health in mind when preparing food. Offer them recipes or bring your own alternatives! For even more recipes flip through this slideshow from the Food Network:

Nov 17

Great American Smokeout

Posted By addie | November 17, 2016

Today is the Great American Smokeout event hosted by The American Cancer Society. No RSVP required! The Smokeout happens every year and it is a day set aside to encourage people to quit using tobacco products (including cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco and vaporizers) even just for one day.

If you currently use tobacco, or know someone who does, here are some tips to help quit:gesture for quit smoking, Anti Smoking

  1. Don’t use tobacco products at all. Every single use is damaging and takes time off of your lifespan.
  2. Write down why you want to quit. Keep a physical reminder of why your health is important and why tobacco is harming you.
  3. Know that it will take commitment, effort and time. Quitting is process and it will not happen over night. You have to make an effort every single day to stick with it.
  4. Get help. There are many resources out there to help and support you. Reach out to family and friends or call 1-800-QUIT NOW for extra support.
  5. Remember you’re not alone. Millions have used tobacco products and have quit using those products and you can too.

For more tips on how to quit, visit: or call 1-800-Quit-Now

For more reasons why to quit, visit:

Nov 15

Why Sleep is Important

Posted By addie | November 15, 2016

Young yawningIt is no secret that most teens don’t get enough sleep. On average, you sleep between 7 and 7.25 hours a night when you should be sleeping exactly 9.25 hours. Yet the older you become, the less you sleep!

There are many reasons why teens do not get enough sleep.

During puberty, your internal clock changes along with your physical appearance. There is a 2-hour biological shift, which means you are able to stay up 2 hours longer, but you must sleep 2 hours longer too! Unfortunately, it isn’t always possible to get that extra sleep. In high school, start times tend to be much earlier than they are in junior high, with some schools starting at 7 AM. Not to mention that homework, extracurricular activities, and social obligations keep you up later at night!

Lack of sleep can lead to a lower ability to function on a daily basis.

Not getting enough sleep can make you moody, irritable, and cranky. It becomes harder to regulate your emotions, making you more easily upset or frustrated. Your cognitive abilities also decline when you don’t sleep enough. This means that you will begin experiencing problems with memory, decision-making, attention, and creativity. Because of this, teens that don’t have a regular sleep schedule often do poorly in school, consistently falling asleep in class or being tardy.

Don’t lose hope! There are still ways for you to get enough sleep!

Maintaining a regular sleep schedule can help fight off sleep deprivation. This means waking up and sleeping at the same time everyday, including the weekends. You can also replace those extra hours of sleep in the morning with 15-20 minute naps throughout the day! Finally, turn off the TV, computer, and radio and avoid caffeine, alcohol, smoking and drugs as they can lead to sleep problems too.

To learn about what happens when you don’t get enough sleep visit:

Nov 10

Eat Your Way to a Smarter School Year

Posted By addie | November 10, 2016

When you’re busy with school, sports, homework and seeing friends it can be hard to find easy, healthy snacks. Check out the following ideas for some snack swaps that will help you stay focused in the classroom.

If you usually grab….Girls Having Snacks In University Canteen

Something salty:

Instead, eat some trail mix that is full of nuts and dried fruits (no chocolate!) for a burst of energy to get you through the afternoon. Even better—make your own from all your favorite types of nuts and other bite size snacks. Nuts have lots of good fats that help your brain work in the best way it can.

Candy or other sweet treats:

Try out new fruits! Apples, oranges, or berries all make great snacks that are easy to take on the go. Fruits have lots of nutrients, including Vitamin C, that will keep your body functioning as it should and help keep you from getting sick cold and flu season.

Something crunchy:

Try cutting up a veggie plate with carrots, cucumbers, peppers or your other favorites for a quick crunchy snack. You can even pair them with peanut butter or a small amount of your favorite dip. Like fruit, eating more veggies will keep you from getting sick and the Vitamin A in them will help keep your eyes healthy!

For more healthy snack ideas visit:

Nov 8

Mindfulness Meditation & Being Present in the Moment

Posted By addie | November 8, 2016

Chill time.Mindfulness is the practice of paying attention to the present moment without making any judgements about what’s happening. Practicing mindfulness can help relieve stress and make it easier to deal with difficult moments in everyday life like worrying about a test, having a fight with a loved one, or making decisions about what to do after graduation. Mindfulness can be practiced informally in everyday life by redirecting your attention from whatever thoughts you have running through your mind and then focusing that attention on being present during everyday actions like brushing your teeth or eating a meal.


Mindfulness can also be practiced formally through different types of meditation like sitting meditation, mindful movement (yoga), and walking meditation. While many people are intimidated by the idea that meditation is about “clearing your mind,” mindfulness meditation is really about noticing when your mind is wandering or full of thoughts, and then redirecting your attention back to your breath, the movements that you are doing, or some other point of focus.

For more information on mindfulness meditation and a list of guided meditations visit:


For more information on how to practice yoga mindfully:

Nov 3

Tips on How to Maintain Hygiene During Puberty

Posted By addie | November 3, 2016

Puberty has its perks, but it can definitely be a scary time. So many changes are happening to your body! For example, your hair becomes much oilier than it used to be, you sweat in weird places, and you grow hair in areas that you didn’t even know existed. The good news is that you’re not alone, and there are many things you can do to maintain your hygiene!

  • Washing HairOily hair. During puberty, your hormones are raging, and this can cause many of your glands to excrete extra oil. In fact, the same hormones that give you acne make your hair greasy. The best way to approach greasy hair is to shower once a day or every other day. There are also many options for shampoos that are specifically made for oily hair. Don’t scrub too hard trying to make your hair less greasy because this can damage your scalp and hair and won’t make a difference.
  • Sweat and body odor. Sweat comes from glands that have always existed on your body, but now there are chemicals that your body is secreting into your sweat that can create a strong odor. The best ways to deal with this is to shower every day or every other day, wear clean clothes (i.e. T-shirts, underwear, socks), and use deodorant!
  • Body hair. Body hair is a guarantee during puberty. Whether you are growing hair on your face, legs, underarms, or elsewhere, it’s up to you if you want to shave. If you choose to shave, you have plenty of options! You can either use an electric razor or a traditional razor with shaving cream or gel. Regardless of what you’re shaving, go slowly! Many of the areas you shave are curvy and going too fast may result in cuts. Finally, it may be best to avoid shaving your pubic hair or chest hair. Hairs in those areas are very thick and can cause irritation when growing back. Facial hair can be managed through threading, plucking, bleaching, or waxing if you think this is necessary. Everyone has hair, and each person chooses to deal with it differently!

For more information about hygiene, visit:

Nov 1

BMI & Poll Results

Posted By addie | November 1, 2016

Polls are in and Iowa teens have had their BMI measured before.

With all the news and media surrounding health, the obesity epidemic, and body image issues, I’m sure you’ve heard the term BMI. But what does it mean? BMI stands for Body Mass Index and it is the ratio of your weight and your height squared. If you would like to Feet on Bathscalecalculate your BMI, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has a calculator on their website.

One of the most important things to consider if you calculate your BMI is what it is actually telling you. While BMI can be a useful tool for doctors and other health professionals to calculate risk for populations-BMI is not a very useful tool for your own personal health. Taking someone’s weight and height and calculating a number does nothing to tell us about the rest of your body and lifestyle-how muscular you are, what your bone density is, or your gender.

So why do we use it? Because BMI does work for estimating risk of large groups of people, and it has been used many times before. People assume it is a good measurement for person health as it relates to weight status, but it is not that simple. Remember that no single measure can tell you if you’re healthy or unhealthy. Having a healthy lifestyle with a good diet and plenty of physical activity is more important than any measurement you can take.