Healthy Living: Teenager's Nutritional Needs You Need To Know


Parents should never be worried or annoyed by their children's growing appetite, especially at their adolescent stages. Boys tend to be hungry all the time and girls favor large meals.

And while self control needs to be exercised at this stage, its perfectly okay - it shows that they're growing and maturing well.


Why Is The Period Of Adolescence Important?


We all know about the "growth spurt" stage, where you practically "watch that kid growing." Between ages 10-12 and 18-21, the child grows with amazing speed into a young adult.

This speed is only rivaled in the first year of one's life. After this, we see the masculine or feminine features of the individual develop into fullness, and from there on growth ends and aging begins.


So that means the period of adolescence is when most of their growth and development takes place. They are usually most physically active at this time too, so parents need to understand that the crazy increase in appetite is only natural; its needed in order to meet the high nutritional and energy needs that this stage demands.

How these needs are met can affect their state of health and fitness for the rest of their lives.

So if you're a teen or the parent of one, this post should help you understand these nutrient needs so that you can be adequately prepared when it comes, and this period of development can be supported.

Read on to know more about the nutritional needs for teenagers and the value of what you eat.



▶️ Calories: These are the measurement used to express the energy delivered by food.

The body demands more calories during early adolescence than at any other time of life, because of their increased activity and metabolism rate. Girls need approximately 2200 calories, while boys need 2500 - 2900 calories per day.

But calories should be taken with health consciousness, so we'll look at only healthy sources of calories that can be taken.

Sources:

Dried apple, avocados and avocado smoothies, pasta, brown rice, oats, wholewheat bread and crackers ,butter, fruit juices such as pineapple juice and orange juice, milk, beans, rice, fish, eggs, corn (oiled or roasted), pap (ogi)

Some snacks also contain large amounts of calories, some of them are: roasted groundnuts, plantain - whether boiled, fried or roasted., fried plantain chips.

▶️ Protein: Of the three nutrients, we're least concerned about protein. Not because it isn't important—50% of our body weight is made up of protein—but because adolescents in the United States get twice as much protein as they need.

Sources

Beef, chicken, turkey, pork, fish, eggs, cheese

▶️ Nutrients: The nutrients protein, carbohydrates, and fats in food serve as the body's energy sources.

Each gram of protein and carbohydrate supplies 4 calories, or units of energy. Fat contributes more than twice as much: 9 calories per gram.

▶️ Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates, found in starches and sugars, get converted into the body's main fuel: the simple sugar glucose. Not all carbs are created equal, however.

In planning meals, we want to push complex-carbohydrate foods and go easy on simple carbohydrates. Complex carbs provide sustained energy; that's why you often see marathon runners and other athletes downing big bowls of pasta before competing.



Most nutritionists recommend that complex carbohydrates make up 50% to 60% of a teenager's caloric intake. You should ensure your teen eats more of complex carbohydrates and less of simple carbohydrates.

Sources

Simple carbohydrates – milk, milk products, fruits, vegetables.

Complex carbohydrates – whole grain food items, legumes, starchy vegetables, and cereals.

▶️ Vitamins And Minerals: If your teen has a balanced diet, he will get his requisite dose of all the essential nutrients. Vitamins and minerals increase your teen’s immunity and protect him from various health conditions like anemia, night blindness, weakness and so on.

Sources

milk, yogurt, cheese, liver, eggs, carrots, sweet potatoes, peaches, mangoes, papaya, and kiwi.

Other good sources of vitamins and minerals include: strawberries, guava, spinach, salmon, tuna, egg yolks, and orange. You can also add nuts, green leafy vegetables, whole grains, avocados, bananas, beans, and peas to your teen’s diet.
Healthy Living: Teenager's Nutritional Needs You Need To Know Healthy Living: Teenager's Nutritional Needs You Need To Know Reviewed by subomi balogun on February 07, 2018 Rating: 5

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