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Wisdom Vine

Teenage Nutrition – How Can Parents Help?

Teenage years are super active ones – teens seem to have a never-ending supply of energy! It is also the phase that sees a rapid spurt in growth, both mentally and physically. That’s why it becomes essential that they get the right nutrition to nourish a healthy mind and body. 

Maintain a balanced diet

The best way your teenage child can keep a check on their weight is by having a balanced diet. This will ensure that children get the required nutrients their body needs. Encourage them to include fresh fruits and vegetables, salads, protein foods and dairy products. Doing so will not only keep them active but also keep illnesses at bay. Also, make sure your teen exercises regularly! Because all work and no play…..well you know the rest!

Keep hydrated!

Quite often, children might be eating right but then, their water intake is too low. This is as important as teenage nutrition. Remember, water is the ultimate hydrator. Besides, water aids in digestion and is vital for the body in countless ways. Unfortunately, most children in their teens do not consume enough water throughout the day. Make sure your teenage child has at least 10 -12 glasses of water daily. Eat well, play hard and drink plenty of water!

Avoid snacking

Snacking between meals leads to erratic dietary habits and is possibly the time when your teenager is most tempted to reach for junk food. Encourage children to have at the most 3 meals a day at the right time. Watch out for signs of emotional eating or eating because they’re bored. If your teenager does fancy a nibble (and with their growing body, this is quite a possibility) try offering a fruit or some nuts to munch on.

Limit consumption of processed food

Eating healthy, non-processed foods will help limit calorie intake and increase the nutrient requirement. Have fresh fruits and vegetables whenever possible. Try to choose healthier options where available. Remember, the added sugar and preservatives in processed foods aren’t too healthy for a body that is at a growing stage. Teenage nutrition is different from that of a child or an adult. They need extra nutrition to support hormonal changes and brain development. So, make sure they eat healthy and stay healthy!

Portion control

Many of us don’t realize that we end up eating too much simply because we’ve become so used to filling our plates! A good way to maintain portion control is to take smaller servings, and then going back for seconds if you’re still hungry. This also eliminates the guilt of finishing what’s on the plate, for fear of ‘wasting’ the food. 

As parents, we want what’s best for our children, but occasionally you might give in to their pestering and let them indulge in a pizza or burgers with a side of fries. Thankfully, the teenage metabolism can handle this occasional calorie overload, as long as they are healthy, active children for the most part. Don’t stress yourself and your teenager out over it. As long as your teenager gets that the right nutrition is what makes a healthy body, a sneaky chocolate now and then ought to be ignored!

Priyajit Marwah

Author: Priyajit Marwah

Graduate from NMIMS University, Mumbai. An avid reader, a sports enthusiast with a flair for voiceovers and voice acting, I've been a theatre artist and have a good amount of experience working as a Digital Marketer! Part of Digital Marketing & SEO @ Lido Learning!

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