Nutrition for young people is important to the way their bodies are shaped for the rest of their lives.
Teenage diets should maintain growth, encourage health and be satisfying. In addition during the teenage years a number of mental and physical changes happen to the body.
These incorporate a noticeable acceleration in height, and extensive gains in bone and muscle. These changes affect nutritional requirements.
For good heatlh the following nutrients should be contained in your diet. We all need different nutrients in different amounts to suit your personal needs.
These include, proteins, carbohydrates, lipids (fats and oils), vitamins and mineral salts, water and dietary fibre.
In teenagers today Iron deficiency is increasing rapidly, teenage girls need iron especially because their iron stores are depleted each month during menstruation. Also teenagers often have hectic lifestyles and poor dietary choices, which can result in anaemia or
Iron can be found in red meat and non-meat sources.
Teenagers also need to watch their calcium supply because although it may not show they are putting serious implications on their body for the future with reverence to bone health.
Without calcium you can develop osteoporosis, which causes bones to become brittle and break easily.
Calcium plentiful foods should be consumed on a daily basis. You can find rich sources of calcium in milk and other dairy products except butter.
Teenagers also need:
q Ample amounts of fruit and vegetables- at least 5 portions a day.
q Plenty of starch and carbohydrates-rice, bread, breakfast cereals, pasta, cous-cous, chapattis and potatoes.
q Large amounts of dairy produce, like milk, fromage frais, yoghurt, and pasteurised cheese.
q Adequate amounts of proteins like, meat, fish, well-cooked eggs, pulses and beans.
q Decreased amounts of fatty and sugary foods.
We need fibre in our diets because the digestive system cannot digest it and it passes through the system giving it a ' work out' as it is trying hard to digest the food so it is strengthening the muscles in the digestive system.