Health & Nutrition

Trends in Teen Nutrition and its Requiremnts

A lot of young people do not understand the importance of Teen Nutrition. When you’re young, you don’t think about osteoporosis and cancer and arthritis. Some young people talk all the time about their ‘stomach of steel’ that allows them to eat things the average adult would cringe away from never thinking that that may, in the lung run, damage their health. Teen Nutrition is often overlooked today, as the trends of teen culture are splitting; there is an obesity epidemic in the United States, while at the same time, sports, nutrition, and exercise are more popular among certain groups than ever.

Nutrition Deficiency and Disease

Eating healthy does more than just keep your weight down. Teen Nutrition can also have tangible ancillary health benefits. When you are eating healthy, you avoid health problems like rickets, scurvy, and beriberi. Rickets is a disease that is also sometimes called ‘bow-leggedness’. It is directly related to vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D is an important nutrient that strengthens bone by helping the body and bones absorb calcium; without calcium, bones get brittle and become malformed. These bones aren’t able to support the body, so usually the leg bones will bow out. Scurvy is a disease that you get from lack of vitamin C. Symptoms are red spots on the skin, damage to the gums in your mouth, and bleeding from your mucous membranes. People with scurvy are also usually very pale. It used to be common mostly among sailors, but it can also be a common ailment for people who don’t eat nutritiously, especially young people with their growing bodies. Beriberi is a disease you get from lack of vitamin B1 (thiamin), that mostly affects your brain; you get tired, your senses become dulled, you may notice weakness in your limbs, and periods of irregular heartbeat.

Eating Healthy

One of the most important elements of Teen Nutrition is eating healthy. Eat a variety of foods; make sure to exercise in conjunction with your diet. Don’t forget that a healthy diet should have a lot of grain products, fruits, and vegetables. One of the most important and hardest element of eating healthy and having good nutrition is keeping the fat, saturated fat, salt, cholesterol, and sugars minimized in your diet. Rather than having a bag of greasy salty chips, it is wise to have a banana or an apple. Another important element of proper nutrition is ensuring that there is enough calcium and iron in your diet; teens are growing, and growth requires extra nutrients.

The Food Pyramid

Over a ten years ago, the United States government created an icon that most of us would recognize today; the Food Pyramid. Most people recognize it when they see it; it was meant as a guide for Teen Nutrition, though it was also meant to be broad enough to cover adults and children as well. Unfortunately, though easy to read, it was based on slightly faulty information. Recently, the USDA revamped their guidelines and released the new food pyramid, at The new pyramid doesn’t have the same familiar pictures as the old one, instead relying on colors that are intended to represent the foods in a simple, but abstract, way. Teens can go to the government’s website, and get detailed guidelines on a healthy eating plan for their weight, age, and gender.

Obesity and Eating Disorders

Obesity is a growing problem in Teen Nutrition today, and although it is not generally considered an eating disorder it has significant adverse health effects like joint pain, heart problems, and diabetes. It is important to understand that physical exercise is necessary, and controlling your eating is a vital part of your health. Knowing a lot about Teen Nutrition is important. However, if you or someone you know has an eating disorder, all the information about healthy eating in the world won’t necessarily help. Eating disorders like Bulimia and Anorexia can have devastating effects on your health. Technically, "Anorexia" is just a scientific term for decreased appetite, and there are many reasons that your appetite might decrease. However, it is normally used when someone is talking about Anorexia Nervosa, which is when someone’s outlook on eating has reached a point where they feel it necessary to completely stop eating in order to attempt to be happy with their bodies. Bulimia is a condition where a person eats, but then proceeds to either vomit, use laxatives, or excessively exercise.

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