Are you concerned about negative body image and eating disorders in teenagers? Do you suspect that your teen has stopped eating because they perceive themselves as overweight? Do they talk about diets or teenage diet plans or other ways to lose weight? Are you finding food hidden in their closet? Be aware! All of these things can be a sign that their is an issue with body image and eating disorders. It may not be a passing phase. Your teen could potentially be heading for some serious health issues. This post was created to help you understand how you can help them.
If your teen does need to lose weight you should keep in mind that many teenage diet plans are potentially dangerous to their health. Especially if they are the ones controlling it without understanding necessary nutritional requirements. Due to this danger you should encourage your teen to consult the family doctor before going on a diet. Most doctors will resist putting teenagers on a diet plan since it is frequently unnecessary. Quite often, the teen is not overweight at all, but they are taking the comments of peers and the unrealistic role models presented by the media of celebrities to heart. If your teen does require a diet plan it’s important to do it properly with medical advice.
Teens are deeply influenced by peer pressure, and it can have an extremely negative effect on their body image of them self. Many perfectly healthy teens obsess about weight issues that don’t exist. This can lead to them taking radical measures to change themselves including starving themselves.
The best teenage diet plan will incorporate both exercise and all the nutrients required to build strong bones and maintain good physical health. If your teen requires a diet plan, talk to a medical professional, either a doctor, dietician or nutritionist. These people can help you and your teenager create a healthy teenage diet plan.
Teenagers commonly do carry a little extra weight. Most of them lose it as they mature. It is important that your teen understand both this, and the fact that everyone is different and should not be the same. There are many body shapes and types and your teen needs to be familiar with this.
If their best friend weighs 105 lbs doesn’t mean they should be that weight, it may not even be healthy or attractive for them to be that weight. There are several factors that contribute toward a healthy weight range including; height, bone size, body shape and family history.
For those who are concerned about body image and eating disorders, a good teenage diet plan will include very few junk foods or none at all. While these foods include some beneficial nutrients, they also have loads of empty calories and fat. Overindulging in junk food at any age increases the risk of weight related diseases like heart disease and diabetes. Conversely, their diet should also include plenty of fruit and vegetables. These are low in fat and provide plenty of nutrients for healthy, growing bodies. Encourage your teenager to pack healthy snacks like fruit, nuts and vegetables for school etc. Having healthy snacks on hand reduces the temptation to purchase junk food when they get hungry.
Another essential element of a good teenage diet plan is exercise. Frequently, exercise is all thats needed. When your teenager exercises regularly they build lean muscle and lean muscle burns more calories than other types of tissue.
A healthy teenage diet plan contains lean meats. Keep them away from large portions of red meat because it is high in fat and is harder to digest. Encourage them to eat more skinless chicken and fish as these are lower in fat and will help them lose weight.
If you teen does need to lose weight then encourage them to drink low fat milk as it contains less fat than whole milk and still provides the necessary calcium to build strong bones. They should also replace soda drinks with water, the same if they drink a lot of fruit juice as these are high in sugar and can contribute to weight gain. If they dont like drinking water explain that it helps flush toxins out of the body and will therefore help clear their skin and reduce the severity of acne. This alone is enough to change the attitude of most teenagers to drinking water.
Once again, never place your teenager on a diet yourself and watch for signs that they are trying to lose weight themselves. See your doctor if you are concerned about your teenagers body image and eating disorders.