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Adolescent Nutrition Therapy in Wayne, PA

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Adolescent nutrition is a critical aspect of a teenager's overall health and well-being. During adolescence, which typically spans from ages 10 to 19, individuals experience rapid growth and development, making it an essential time to provide proper nutrition to support physical, mental, and emotional health.

Key considerations for adolescent nutrition

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Balanced Diet in Adolescents

Adolescents need a balanced diet that includes a variety of foods from all food groups. These include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein sources (such as lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, and tofu), and dairy or dairy alternatives.



Adolescent Caloric Needs

Caloric needs vary among adolescents based on factors like age, puberty stage, sex, activity level, and growth rate. Teens going through growth spurts or who are very physically active may require more calories to support their development.



Nutrient Requirements in Adolescents

Adolescents require essential nutrients such as calcium, vitamin D, iron, and folate. Calcium and vitamin D are crucial for bone health, while iron is essential for oxygen transport in the body. Folate is essential for normal cell division and development.



Hydration

Staying properly hydrated is vital for overall health. Water is the best choice for hydration, and adolescents should limit sugary beverages like soda and energy drinks. Furthermore, adolescents have risk factors that differ from adults.

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Portion Control in Teens

Pay attention to portion sizes to avoid overeating. This can help prevent weight-related health issues like obesity and emphasize healthy snacking.



Balanced Breakfast for Adolescents

Emphasize the importance of a balanced breakfast. A nutritious breakfast can help improve concentration and energy levels throughout the day.



Limit Processed Foods

Minimize the consumption of processed foods, which tend to be high in added sugars, unhealthy fats, and sodium.



Adolescent Vegetarian and Vegan Diets

If an adolescent chooses a vegetarian or vegan diet, ensure they get adequate protein, iron, calcium, vitamin B12, and other essential nutrients. Consider consulting a healthcare professional or registered dietitian for guidance.

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Adolescent Allergies and Dietary Restrictions

Be aware of any food allergies or dietary restrictions that the adolescent may have and ensure they receive appropriate alternatives and supplements if needed.



Family Meals

Eating meals together as a family can encourage healthy eating habits and provide an opportunity for open discussion about nutrition and food choices.



Adolescent Nutrition Education

Educate adolescents about nutrition, including how to read food labels, make healthier choices, and understand the importance of a balanced diet.



Adolescent Physical Activity:

Encourage regular physical activity to support overall health and maintain a healthy weight.

It's important to note that individual nutritional needs can vary, and it's advisable to consult with a registered dietitian to develop a personalized nutrition plan for adolescents, especially if there are specific dietary concerns, athletic aspirations, or medical conditions. Additionally, parents and caregivers play a crucial role in modeling healthy eating habits and providing nutritious food choices at home. Lauren has vast experience and training in adolescent nutrition. She has raised two healthy sons and coached the Devon Prep Tennis Team to winning their first ever State Championship.


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