Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Feeding Your Teen Machine

Bigger appetites, busy lifestyles, mood swings, struggles for independence, peer pressure - they all challenge how and what your teenager eats. As a parent, there are ways you can positively influence the eating habits of your teen.
  • Stock your kitchen with easy-to-grab nutritious snacks, such as whole fruit, yogurt, hummus, cut vegetables and string cheese.
  • Make time for family meals. Even if you have to schedule around after-school activities and jobs, put family meals on the calendar days in advance.
  • Discuss the options at fast-food restaurants with your teen.
  • Help kids learn about healthy portion sizes by buying small bags of snacks.
  • Set a good example by leading a healthy lifestyle yourself, complete with regular physical activity and healthful eating.
Did you know March is National Nutrition Month? For more ideas on how to improve your family's diet, consider signing up for the next Healthy Shopping Tour on Thursday, March 26, at the Whole Foods Market in Mt. Washington neighborhood of Baltimore. Northwest Hospital Community Health Educator Kristen Diaz, M.S., instructs a group on how to select healthy foods and shares strategies for keeping junk food from filling your cart or basket.

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