A recent survey by two leading educational institutions has found that the lack of physical activity among young people aged 11 to 15 is the most significant factor contributing to obesity. This comes at a time when nearly half of adolescents are not physically active on a regular basis and as the rate of childhood obesity has nearly doubled over the last 20 years.
Healthy eating habits are best formed at a young age. Parents are always looking for information/hints to help strike a balance between their busy schedules and their desire to feed their children nutritious meals. Our “Food Coach” can offer practical meal ideas for feeding kids of all ages.
Healthy Diet for Teens
All parents want their children to be healthy. During school years, children go through remarkable physical changes of all kinds, their food intake becomes a critical aspect of this growth and development. Recent research shows that nourishing food not only makes a child healthier, it makes him emotionally more stable, and it improves school performance. It appears then that paying attention to our children’s diets pays high dividends. If only our children thought so, too! Because children tend to rank their parents’ views on food along with their unpopular views on curfews, rock music, hair styles, etc., it is up to the parents to, first of all, be clever about insinuating nutritious foods into the family menus and, secondly, take a reasonable but hard line when other approaches fail.
We can offer you the best options for a nutritious breakfast, lunch, after school snack and dinner, and make sure your teenager is maintaining a high level of health.
Exercise for Teens
Aerobic exercise is perfect for teens who are independent and like variety. Some possibilities include: Running, in-line skating, cycling, swimming, power walking, tennis, full-court basketball, aerobic dancing, kick-boxing, Tae Bo, hockey, soccer, rowing, elliptical trainer, jumping rope, racquetball, handball and trampoline.
The Australian Heart Foundation suggests that teens participate in at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity every day. Reassure your teen that aerobic exercise, when done correctly, shouldn’t resemble running timed laps in gym class, when many kids feel like their lungs are ready to burst and their legs are on fire. This isn’t about “no pain, no gain,” but choosing fun physical activities that also make you sweat and breathe a little harder.
Exercise should never hurt, although a little muscle soreness can be expected, especially in the initial weeks of a workout program. Be sure your teen knows the importance of stretching and warming up. And keep in mind that out-of-shape kids should start out slowly, since they are more prone to serious injury if they do too much too soon.
There are some great sports for your teen to take part in listed on our Sports Coaching page.