The teenage years are among the most significant periods of physical growth and development. It is the period during which the hormones, bones, and muscles are primed to take their eventual shape and the kind of nutrition afforded to the body during this time plays an important role in the eventual outcome. Because of the body’s continuous requirement for nourishment, minerals and nutrients, teenagers tend to have a heavier than normal appetite and will look to satiate the hunger pangs throughout the course of the day. In fact, this is the most prominent reason that fast food is such a big part of a teenagers daily diet – the food is easy to access and rather economically priced – allowing them to eat as much of it as possible until the hunger pangs have disappeared. However, fast food contains little to no nutritional value and simply provides the body with nothing but excess cholesterol and calories that need to be burned with the help of substantial exercise – something that is obviously lacking in most teenagers’ daily routine.
When looking to encourage your child to consume a healthier diet, the first step is to make the child aware of the dangers of fast food consumption. Make it a point to get the child to cut down his or her intake of foods that are known to contain excessive fats, sugar and empty calories. Nuts are one of the healthiest natural foods as long as they are consumed in moderation.
Using bitter nuts as a garnishing on celery or sandwiches will add a certain taste as well as health factor to the snack as well. Because teenagers tend to have a very busy social schedule on a daily basis, they look for convenience when it comes to food. As a result, making sure that any snacks prepared for them are easy to carry along and can be consumed in small quantities, like small pieces of chopped fruit and vegetables which if tasty, will become a favorite snack. Most teens like colas and sodas available in the consumer market today, but helping them see the advantages of teas fruit juices will help them follow a healthier diet.
Most teenagers are very conscious about their physical appearance and so they will be more open to healthy foods once they find out that fast foods and colas can do irreparable damage to their appearance. Healthy snacks for teenagers should include at least one helping of yogurt as this will help to meet their calcium requirements.
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