Moms of boys

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Moms of boys
9
Wed, 01-21-2009 - 1:44pm

My teen (14) is in a healthy bodybuilding type phase, he's not bulking up in a weird way, but is very invested in getting healthier and lifting weights and such. A side effect of this is that he's a bit obsessed with his "diet". I use quotation marks because I'm trying to get him to LOSE that word, it drives me bonkers as he doesn't need to lose weight and he's all into comparing calories and limiting his caloric intake.

Mom, being so old and foolish knows nothing of course! Despite the fact that I've spent 25 years in the medical field often working with people who were doing exactly what he is doing (building muscle mass). Anyway, he's intent on limiting his intake and choosing healthier foods, the second part of which I am very much in support of.

What I consider my role is to provide healthier choices, and I'm struggling with how to get enough protein in him for snack foods. They eat healthy meals, it's the in between I am having trouble supporting. We don't do a lot of junk or chips except for when we have large groups of kids, so that's not the issue, but he seems to really NEED to snack in between meals, and I want to have high protein stuff around he can do himself. We eat way too much bread in this family (d'oh, who's always baking that stuff??), so nothing that includes breads or carbs really.

An example: I made a lunch of grilled (no oil) tortilla wraps with no fat turkey and some cheese, goldfish crackers, then he had an apple, some applesauce, and some yogurt. He's still hungry, I think because there's not enough protein in there.

What are some good high protein snacks for a growing teen? Easily accessible, not expensive, low in sugar so my daughter can also partake (she's my sugar hound).

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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
In reply to: nancymc
Wed, 01-21-2009 - 4:03pm

It's actually a myth that teens who are body building need tons of protein. Yes, they do need more to build muscle, but the snack you described sounds about right. Since protein is good for regulating blood sugar, if he still felt hungry, what he probably needed was carbs from a whole grain source, like whole wheat pasta or bread. It also won't kill him to have a bit more fat. Throwing an avocado half on that sandwich would be a good start, since avocados are rich in MUFAs and PUFAs. If he's not overweight, he can also drink 2% or even whole milk (no more than 24 oz per day).


Other ideas for snacks: tongol tuna (this is the lowest in mercury of all canned tunas, but you still only want a can or two a week), beef jerky from naturally raised beef that is free of nitrites (Snackmaster is a good brand, but it's costly), canned refried beans (Amy's is a great brand) on whole wheat tortillas (high in fiber and protein, with negligible fat), a tossed salad with a can of kidney or garbanzo beans thrown in and dressed with a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar.


I think the key is to not to go out of balance trying to get one nutrient. He may need a bit more protein than a teen who isn't lifting weights and perhaps a few more calories, but those extra calories should come from a variety of sources, not just protein rich foods.

Community Leader
Registered: 07-26-1999
In reply to: nancymc
Wed, 01-21-2009 - 4:49pm

Nancy, I know I am not a mom of

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: nancymc
Wed, 01-21-2009 - 7:45pm

The reason I believe he needs more protein is because he just can't seem to get FULL on what he's currently eating. The thing is that he gets protein in his meals, but I truly think he does need more protein in his mid day snacks. He enjoys the fruits/yogurts, etc, but just stays hungry. I know that's part of what a teen is, but with this new eating plan of his I can't figure out how to keep him satisfied, you know?

He eats a good variety of greens, fats, and plenty of carbs (probably too much), I guess I should have listed that, most of them whole wheat, many of them from freshly ground wheat flour in fact (even my cookies are made with flour I grind), so I'm not as concerned about the levels of other stuff. He has a homemade smoothie at least once per day made with milk, yogurt, and tons of fruits.

I wish I could get him to eat avocado, I think they are one of the world's perfect foods, he despises them, I mean HATES them, has since he was a baby! The other ideas are great (he loves refried beans) but I'm not sure he'll go to the trouble of doing them on his own, you know? He's a typical teen and wants quick and easy these days!

I'll talk to him about some of the other choices, he loves jerkey but that stuff is too expensive to keep on hand. We actually still have a bit from his deer, but it's getting low.

All great ideas, thanks.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: nancymc
Wed, 01-21-2009 - 7:48pm

I regretted my title as soon as I hit "post", but I don't think you can edit titles on here, or can you? Thanks for the ideas, he does get tons of liquids, mostly in water but he also does fruit juices/milk in smoothies at least once per day (that he does make on his own, he's enjoying my new immmersible blender).

He's not a huge PB fan, but he will sometimes do apples with PB, I need to remind him of that as a quick option.

I got some trail mixes today (went to one of those HUGE HEB-Plus stores, dangerous!), some plain almonds, and a few other nut options so we'll see if that helps.

Thanks!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-06-2006
In reply to: nancymc
Wed, 01-21-2009 - 11:26pm

Nancy - you have some great ideas here already. I only have two things to add - eggs (or egg whites) and flax seed. A little ground flax seed in a smoothie gives it some additional "substance" and making a "bunch" of hard-boiled eggs to have on hand for quick snacks, egg salad, slicing for salads, etc. might help. A morning snack could be a breakfast burrito with scrambled eggs/egg whites.

Thanks for asking this question because Evan swims (like competitive training type swimming) for 10 - 12 hours/week so I'm forever looking for ways to get extra protein and some additional calories into him. Doctor's orders here. He's a really picky eater so it drives me CRAZY. The kids drink 2% milk and eat lowfat or full fat yogurt to add some calories to their intake.

When my brother was in high school he often felt just like your son. He played varsity basketball for three years and would come home, eat two bowls of cereal, take a nap, eat a full dinner, do his homework, eat a snack and go to bed. He's 6' 4" tall and 35 years old now.

HTH

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-24-2005
In reply to: nancymc
Thu, 01-22-2009 - 12:18am

Nancy, my brother will be here on Friday and I will ask him. he used to be pretty into weightlifting and bodybuilding so he will hopefully have some good advice.

Kurt doesn't lift weights but he is in a swim club 3x a week, walks 1km to and 1 km from school a day, and he does a really hard video workout with me 5 nights a week. The boy is ALWAYS hungry. I've never seen anyone eat so much in my life. I am a terrible cook and while I try to plan out meals, it never works. One thing I do is cook a few chicken breasts and put them in the fridge. yesterday we were in a rush so I just made pasta and sauce for supper. Kurt also had a chicken breast, so hopefully that was enough protein. I don't know if it has protein, but he likes to eat cottage cheese as a snack.

Have you considered buying protein powder? Every morning I have a 'shake' made with chocolate milk, a banana, some fat free plain yogurt and chocolate protein powder. It is awesome and VERY filling! It would be a great snack and is easy to make.

That's all I've got. LOL I'll definitely ask my brother though and report back. :)

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: nancymc
Thu, 01-22-2009 - 8:36am

OH, the flax is a good idea, *I* add it to everything I make (pancakes, muffins, breads) but I hadn't thought to have him add it to his own smoothies, that would be an easy addition that would pack in some good nutrition. I keep a little jar of it next to the oven, so I will ask him to shake some into his smoothies, thanks.

The protein powder in smoothies is also a great idea, he's pretty (overly if you ask me) calorie conscious though, do they have some that are low in calories? I remember they used to market them for body builders that were HIGH in calories, but he wants to maintain his weight so he's trying to watch his caloric intake. I'll check at the HFS next time I go.

Easy and quick is the key, any more easy and quick ideas that a teen will do on his own, keep them coming!

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-- Oliver Wendell Holmes


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Avatar for prinsessa
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-29-2003
In reply to: nancymc
Thu, 01-22-2009 - 11:12am
I was going to suggest the smoothies.

Sarah...mommy to Janessa and Julian


iVillage Member
Registered: 05-12-2004
In reply to: nancymc
Thu, 01-22-2009 - 2:01pm
A couple of years ago when my husband wanted to lose weight and bulk up he did several different things, most of which have already been mentioned.

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