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Take Charge of Your
ATeenager's Guide to Better
Let's Talk About Health
- Get moving. Activity can make you stronger
and more flexible.
- Eat healthy every day. Choose fruits,
breads, cereals, lean meat, poultry, fish, dry beans, and
lowfat or nonfat milk and cheeses.
- Eat slowly. You will be able to tell when
you are full before you eat too much.
- Eat less fats, oils, and sweets. Butter,
margarine, oils, candy, high-fat salad dressings, and soft
drinks offer little or no protein, vitamins, or minerals.
- Eat when you are hungry. Your body will
tell you when itís hungry. Snacking is OK, but try to go
for a variety of nutritious snacks. (See the ideas in the
Snack Attack below.)
potato chips or tortilla chips with salsa
- Pretzels (lightly salted or unsalted)
- Bagels with tomato sauce and lowfat cheese
- Flavored rice cakes (like caramel or apple
- Popcornóair popped or lowfat microwave
- Veggies with lowfat or fat-free dip
- Lowfat cottage cheese topped with fruit
or spread on whole-wheat crackers
- Ice milk, lowfat frozen or regular yogurt
(add skim milk, orange or pineapple juice, and sliced bananas
or strawberries to make a lowfat milk shake)
- Frozen fruit bars
- Vanilla wafers, gingersnaps, graham crackers,
animal crackers, fig bars, raisins
- Angel food cake topped with strawberries
or raspberries and lowfat whipped cream
- String cheese
Staying Healthy and Happy
a teenager can be tough, and sometimes teens who are healthy
try to lose weight even though they donít need to. You may
feel a lot of pressure to look a certain way. Acting on this
pressure may lead to eating disorders like anorexia nervosa
or bulimia nervosa.
Anorexia nervosa is a form of self-starvation where a person
does not eat enough food to keep healthy and does not maintain
a healthy weight.
Bulimia nervosa is when a person eats a lot of food and then
vomits or uses other methods, such as fasting or
overexercising, to avoid gaining weight after overeating.
If you would like to learn more about eating disorders, see
the list of resources at the end of this booklet.
If you are concerned about your eating habits or the way
you look, itís important to talk to someone you trust. Try
talking to a parent, friend, doctor, teacher, or counselor
at your school.
Being happy with who you are and what you look like is important
for a healthy body and mind. You donít have to be an athlete,
supermodel, or movie star to like who you are and to stay
fit and healthy.
You can take charge of your health by making small changes
in your eating and physical activity habits. These changes
will help you feel and look better now and be healthier for
the rest of your life!
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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND
National Institutes of Health
NIH Publication No. 01-4328