10 Tips for a Healthy Teenager
|By Petra Trudell, Managing Editor on Thursday, June 19, 2014|
|Your teenage son or daughter is at a crucial time in their development. Check out our
tips for mental and physical health.||
Remember what it was like to be a teenager? Whether it was the time of your life or a time you'd like to forget, you can't deny how important those years were.
If you have a son or daughter in this phase of life, follow these tips to help them feel their best during this time of transition and develop healthy habits for the future.
1. Work on managing stress.
School and social pressures can really take a toll on your child's mental health. They need to find an outlet for their stress so it doesn't affect them negatively at school and on their personal time. Finding a positive outlet like joining a club or team or even taking a class outside of school can be a huge help. Just make sure to encourage them and celebrate their successes.
2. Help them eat a balanced diet that supports proper hormone levels.
During the teenage years, the hormones spike and cause major changes within the body. This is when eating a healthy diet that supports this balance is most crucial. Make sure to include lots of fresh and colorful fruits and vegetables. Foods that can interferer with hormone balance include those made with white flour and sugar as well as caffeine. Include plenty of good fats, like omega-3s. A multivitamin can help them make up for any nutrients they may be missing.
3. Educate them on the changes they're experiencing.
Knowledge is power when it comes to your body, no matter your age. As awkward as it may be, your child should hear from you what they should expect during their teens. It's time to get vocal and candid.
4. Encourage proper skin care.
Your child will most likely be at war with their skin at some point, which is why they need to know how to take care of it to prevent, or at least manage common problems like acne. Make sure they wash their face twice a day and apply a moisturizer with sunscreen. Avoiding too much unprotected sun exposure will save their skin now and in the future.
5. Teach them how to pack a lunch.
While the push for healthier school lunches is out there, there's still a long way to go. Bring your teen into the kitchen and allow them to help you prep meals for dinner as well as their lunch for school. Teenagers love control and are more likely to eat what they helped prepare.
6. Cut out the processed and fast foods.
High in fat, sugar and salt, these foods have no place in anyone's diet, let alone that of a developing teen. They can impact heart health, lead to chronic conditions like diabetes and cause weight gain. These foods can also exacerbate skin problems. Lastly, they do nothing for the immune system.
7. Encourage exercise.
Childhood and teenage obesity is an epidemic in this country. Getting your child up and moving beyond what they do at school is of utmost importance to keep their entire body healthy and functioning optimally. Try making exercise a family activity, so everyone sticks with it.
8. Limit technology time.
What teen isn't glued to their phone, tablet or laptop these days? Do what you can to limit technology use in your home so your child interacts with the family, winds down at the end of the day and sleeps better at night. Lead by example -- no televisions in bedrooms and everyone charges their phone in the kitchen overnight.
9. Emphasize the importance of sleep.
Sleep is crucial for so many aspects of health, including weight management and a strong immune system to fight off threats of illness. Limit technology use at night, as mentioned above, and set a bedtime for everyone in the house. Your child needs at least eight hours of sleep per night. Another great tip is to keep a routine on the weekends, too -- there is no such thing as "catching up on sleep."
10. Keep the lines of communication open.
No matter how much they may not want to, your child needs to feel they can come to you with any issues they may be experiencing. This helps keep them healthy in all ways, so do your best to be available when they need it.
We carry a variety of supplements for teens at eVitamins. Talk with your child's doctor to determine what nutrients they may need more of, especially if they have a diagnosed medical condition. Shop today and save!
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