Teen Nutrition

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  • Published : December 20, 2012
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The teenage years include times of rapid growth and development, both physically and mentally. Good nutrition during these times helps ensure teens have the building blocks to support their needs. It also involves avoiding excessive food intake that can lead to immediate and future health problems. A dietitian or health care provider can give teens nutritional advice specific to their particular situation. 35% percent of Canadian boys and 29% of Canadian girls weigh more than they should. And 17 percent of boys and 15 percent of girls in Canada fall into the obesity range. This rate has more than doubled since 1985. And 42 percent to 62 percent will stay obese as adults. Overweight teens may suffer psychologically because of teasing from peers and may face serious health problems, including diabetes, heart diseases, high cholesterol and blood pressure. Teenagers often build their diet around convenience rather than health. Teenagers who eat meals away from home likely consume more calories than those who consume home-prepared meals. Some 42% of teens skip breakfast, another factor in obesity. If parents encourage their teens to eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables a day and eliminate sweetened drinks like soda, fruit juices and sports drinks, they can significantly reduce the risk of their teen becoming obese. As teenagers mature into adulthood, they may continue some of the eating habits they developed earlier in life. A diet high in sugar and fat can promote weight gain and poor health later in life, particularly once the teenager's metabolism slows down. A diet high in sugar can also increase a teenager's risk of developing heart disease later in life it can cause teenagers to develop poor cholesterol levels that persist into adulthood. In conclusion, learning and applying nutritional values during the teenage years will help improve your overall growth and development, while promoting healthy habits well into adulthood. Good nutrition during...
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