Meeting Your Teen's Nutritional Needs

  • Provide structured meals, and expect your teen to eat with the family at least once each day. This will provide you with both the opportunity to include healthy foods in your teen's diet and to talk about her day and experiences.
    • Make sure your house is well-stocked with healthy snacks. Keep fruit, breads, bagels, juices, string cheese and yogurt on hand and easily available.
    • Talk to your teens about their lunch choices. Encourage them to drink milk instead of soda, and to consider adding fruit or vegetables to their noontime choices. Know what options are available for meals and snacks at your teen's school.
    • Avoid criticizing your teen's food choices. When food becomes a topic for struggle, studies show that teens skip more meals and make even worse food choices. Despite parents' worst fears, most teens somehow muddle through these difficult years. Unless you notice that your teen is losing more weight than is healthy, or appears to be relying on supplements instead of whole foods, stand back and let them experiment.

    RESOURCES:

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