Healthy Tips for Teens
Teenage girls are at particular risk: more than 85 percent of all girls ages 12 to 19 do not get the recommended amount of calcium. In fact, teen girls average only about 740 mg of calcium a day, well below the recommended 1,300 mg needed for normal growth. Getting too little calcium may lead to health problems later in life, such as osteoporosis and fragile bones.
Source: National Institute of Child Health & Human Development, http://www.nichd.nih.gov/milk/whymilk/background.cfm
Iron Helps Learning in Teenage Girls
Research at Johns Hopkins University showed the value of iron supplementation for adolescent girls with non-anemic iron deficiency. The added iron, researchers said, improved verbal learning and memory. The Baltimore Sun's report on the research said many young women had given up red meat - ''the best dietary source of iron.'' Adding lean meat to the diet provides heme iron, the article said, which is ''more easily absorbed than iron from plant foods.'' Iron deficiency can impair physical endurance, work capacity, infant growth and it depresses the immune function, in addition to affecting cognitive development. For more information on nutrition for adolescent girls read Why BEEF is Important in the Diets of Growing Girls and Boys
Source: AIF Newsletter, Aug/Sept. 1997, Baltimore Sun
The best nutrition advice to keep your adolescent healthy includes encouraging them to:
Eat a variety of foods
Balance the food you eat with physical activity
Choose a diet with plenty of grain products, vegetables and fruits
Choose a diet low in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol
Choose a diet moderate in sugars and salt
Parents Are The Leading Role Models for Kids
The Family Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, conducted by the American Dietetic Association Foundation, shows that parents have more potential to influence their children's behavior, including their eating habits, than anyone else. The survey underscores the importance of parents' involvement in helping children make good dietary choices like getting in three servings of dairy a day to build stronger bones.
The American Academy of Family Physicians, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Dietetic Association and the National Medical Association support 3-A-Day of Dairy for stronger bones and better bodies. 2 out of 3 school-age children don't get the calcium they need to help build stronger bones. Look for the 3-A-Day of Dairy logo on milk, cheese and yogurt packages, showing they're an excellent source of calcium.
Source: American Dairy Association's 3-A-Day, http://www.3aday.org/