Five Tips for Feeding Hungry Teens
Feeding your hungry teens and keeping them feeling satisfied and out of the kitchen for more than ten minutes can seem like a daunting and ongoing task.
Here are five tips for making sure your hungry teens have access to healthful foods and choose healthy options that will keep them satiated, assist them to concentrate at school and allow them to lead an active lifestyle.
The main aim for our teens is to eat mainly whole foods (those foods that are as close to their natural state as possible) Of course teenagers will always want to eat some of the less healthful foods too. That is not a problem if it is combined with good healthy whole foods and it doesn’t form too much of their overall diet.
Keep a variety of healthy foods in the pantry in full sight. These should ideally be placed in glass jars at the pantry entrance so hungry teens can choose healthy options without having to think too much. Like ourselves, our teens will more likely eat what they see first, and are less likely to search for less healthy options. Some great items to keep in the…
Make sure your hungry teen is consuming protein at every meal. Protein is the macronutrient that is most satiating as it will reduce the hunger hormone, ghrelin. High-protein foods for your hungry teen can include animal meats such as chicken, pork, fish, lamb or beef, nuts, seeds, eggs, beans, legumes, chickpeas, tofu or tempeh, quinoa or natural yoghurt.
Good fats are also a must for your hungry teen. Foods such as salmon, olive oil, avocados, coconut oil, nuts and seeds all contain healthy fats that your hungry teen needs for their growing body.
Educate your teen about good, healthy food. What is the reason behind ‘adding seeds to your breakfast’ or “getting as many colours into your diet as possible’ The more you educate your hungry teen, the more likely they are to make mindful choices when it comes to food.
Avoid shaming our hungry teens for wanting less than healthy foods, or for wanting to use food as a comfort. This is actually quite normal for teens and is related to them craving a quick dopamine hit. Educating them as mentioned above will allow them to make better choices.
Good luck feeding your hungry teens.
Remember that adding to your hungry teen’s diet rather than taking away is a great way to get them to eat a diet full of healthy diversity and variety.
Shanelle Curtis from Nourish Me ABC is a certified Nutrition, Health & Wellness Coach, certified Women's Health & Wellness Coach with a Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education and Bachelor of Education in Special Needs.
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