Nutrition for YOUTH

Proper nutrition and healthy eating is connected with reduced risk for many diseases. Though healthy eating in childhood and adolescence is important for proper growth and development, it is more important when an individual becomes a youth. But most of the youths today do not follow the recommendations about proper nutrition. Healthy eating contributes to overall healthy life, including healthy bones, skin, and energy levels.
Though we try to eat healthy, and maintain a good diet, but the fact is that it is not good enough. The fast moving world we live in and the craving to eat unhealthy food is at an all time high. We know that replenishing the body's mineral supply is indispensable for vibrant health. But most people still don't get the appropriate nutrition they need to stay healthy.
Not every youth has the same nutritional needs. But for every youth, good nutrition helps keep them strong as they need energy for active lives that may involve athletic pursuits and busy days filled with work.
The following are the basic foods, which may be used as general recommendations: 
  • A youth should eat at least 100 to 150 gm of whole grain bread, cereal, or rice every day. At least one-half of all grains should be whole grains.
  • Eat more dark green vegetables, as well as more dry beans and peas.
  • A variety of fresh fruits is good. Go for fruit juices every now and than.
  • Take plenty of calcium-rich food from low-fat or fat-free milk. People who don’t like milk should turn to other sources of calcium, such as hard cheeses and dahi.
  • Protein intake should come from low-fat or lean meats and poultry. Varying choices is recommended, so that more fish, beans, peas, nuts, pulses and seeds that provide protein are part of the diet.
  • Most fat sources should come from fish, nuts, and vegetable oils. Solid fats such as butter or ghee should be limited.
People tend to look upon nutritional supplements differently according to their ages. Usually, young people never think of taking supplements to satisfy their nutritional needs. As we age, we tend to become more health conscious and want to prolong our health as we get older. One way that we can help ourselves feel better as well as function more efficiently is to take nutritional supplements. But most of the doctors and dietitians do not recommend these supplements. Excessive use of vitamins and mineral supplements can lead to serious health problems and it is best to involve a physician to ensure that supplements are being used at appropriate and safe levels. It is also best not to change a diet without the advice of a nutritional expert or health care professional.
Active youth athletes need more calories. They should be consuming healthful foods frequently, particularly during sport and exercise. Athletes are at increased risk for iron deficiency because exercise depletes iron levels. So iron intake should be taken care of. Also emphasis on calcium intake is important to prevent stress fractures for the athletic youth.

For more information on diet, nutrition, health or fitness,  contact DesiDieter Health and Diet Experts.