As parents, we all want our teens to be healthy and energetic. But with their busy schedules and on-the-go lifestyles, it can be a challenge to ensure they’re getting the right nutrition. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best foods for active teens – because fueling their bodies with the right nutrients is essential for helping them perform at their best. Whether your teen is a star athlete or just loves staying active, these delicious and nutritious options are sure to keep them fueled up, focused, and ready for anything!
As active teens, it’s important to make sure we are fueling our bodies with the best foods to help us perform at our best. Eating a balanced diet of healthy whole foods is essential for active teens. Here are some of the best foods to include in our diets:
1. Fruits and vegetables: Fruits and vegetables are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are essential for good health. Include a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables in your diet for optimum nutrition.
2. Lean protein: Protein is necessary for muscle growth and repair. Choose lean protein sources such as chicken, fish, tofu, legumes, and eggs.
3. Healthy fats: Healthy fats are important for brain health and energy production. Include healthy fats in your diet from sources such as avocados, nuts, seeds, and olive oil.
Nutritional Considerations for Active Teens
When it comes to their nutritional needs, active teens have different requirements than sedentary teenagers or adults. They need more calories and more of certain nutrients to support their growth and development, and to fuel their activities.
Here are some specific considerations for active teens:
1. Calories: Active teens require more calories than sedentary teens or adults. Depending on their activity level, they may need anywhere from 2,000 to 4,000 calories per day.
2. Protein: Protein is essential for building and repairing muscles. Active teens need about 0.5 to 0.7 grams of protein per pound of body weight daily. Good sources of protein include lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, tofu, nuts, and seeds.
3. Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates are the body’s preferred source of fuel for physical activity. Active teens should consume at least 50% of their daily calorie intake from carbs (100-130 grams per day). Good sources of carbs include whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and legumes.
Breakfast Ideas for Busy Mornings
If you’re looking for some quick and healthy breakfast ideas for your busy mornings, look no further! Here are a few of our favorite breakfast recipes that are sure to give your body the fuel it needs to power through even the most active days:
-Overnight oats: This make-ahead breakfast is perfect for busy mornings! Simply combine rolled oats, milk, chia seeds, and your favorite fruits and spices in a jar or container the night before, and let it sit in the fridge overnight. In the morning, just grab and go!
-Smoothie bowl: Start your day with a nutritious smoothie bowl! Just blend up your favorite fruits and veggies with some almond milk or yogurt, pour into a bowl, and top with things like granola, nuts, or fruit.
-Egg muffins: These protein-packed muffins are perfect for on-the-go mornings. Just whisk together some eggs, add in some shredded cheese and vegetables (spinach, mushrooms, onions, etc.), and bake in a muffin tin. They freeze well too, so you can make a batch ahead of time!
Healthy Snack Ideas
Healthy snack foods are an important part of a nutritious diet for active teens. When choosing snacks, it is best to choose items that are high in healthy carbohydrates, proteins, and fiber. Some great healthy snack ideas include:
Whole grain bread or crackers with peanut butter or cheese
A handful of nuts or seeds
A piece of fruit or veggie sticks with dip
yogurt or cottage cheese with fruit
trail mix made with dried fruit, nuts, and seeds
granola bars or energy bars
Foods to Keep in a Kitchen Pantry
One of the most important things you can do to help your teen lead a healthy lifestyle is to make sure their kitchen pantry is stocked with nutritious foods. Here are some of the best foods to keep in your pantry to fuel your teen’s active body:
1. Whole grain cereals and breads: Look for cereals and breads made with 100% whole grains, as these will provide your teen with complex carbohydrates that will give them long-lasting energy.
2. Healthy snacks: Keep a variety of healthy snacks on hand, such as nuts and seeds, dried fruit, whole grain crackers, and yogurt. These will help your teen avoid unhealthy junk food when they’re feeling snacky.
3. Fruits and vegetables: Be sure to always have fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables in the pantry so your teen can easily add them to their meals or snacks.
4. Lean protein: Include lean protein sources like chicken, fish, tofu, beans, and eggs in the pantry so your teen can get the nutrients they need to build strong muscles.
5. Healthy oils: Oils like olive oil and canola oil are great for cooking or adding to salads and other dishes. They’re a good source of healthy fats that are essential for growth and development.
Dining Out Options
As active teens, it’s important to fuel our bodies with the right foods to help us perform our best. When we’re busy with school, sports, and extracurricular activities, it can be hard to find the time to cook healthy meals at home. Fortunately, there are plenty of dining out options that can help us stay on track.
Here are some tips for choosing healthy options when dining out:
-Look for menus that offer fresh, whole foods. Avoid processed foods and meals that are high in saturated fat and sugar.
-Choose lean protein sources such as grilled chicken or fish, tofu, or legumes. These will help keep you feeling full and energized.
-Load up on healthy veggies and fruits. These provide essential nutrients and fiber that will help you stay fueled throughout the day.
-When possible, select whole grain breads or pastas over refined white varieties. Whole grains offer more vitamins, minerals, and fiber than refined grains.
By following these tips, you can make sure you’re getting the nourishment your body needs to stay active and healthy!
Eating a balanced diet of nutritious foods is essential for helping teens stay healthy and have the energy to participate in sports, school activities, and other extracurriculars. Making sure they are consuming the best kinds of foods will give them all the vitamins and minerals needed to fuel their active lifestyles with ease. Hopefully this article has given you insight into what those food options should be so that you can help your teen lead an energized life.