Despite their statements to the contrary, teenagers still need their family and learn from them.
Benefits of a Healthy Family
Despite all of their statements to the contrary, teenagers still need their family. During adolescence, a teenager’s relationships with their parents and family changes, but they still need that support structure as much as they did when they were younger. As teenagers grow, they are going through both physical and emotional changes which can often lead to them feeling a sense of struggling to fit in. This is why a healthy family structure (both physically and emotionally) is so important during this stage of life. Family can provide a much needed strong emotional base to help them feel loved, supported, and maybe most importantly, heard and seen. Giving them the safety net beneath them as they explore the type of person that they are going to become. So while parents often feel that their teenager is ignoring them, their messages and lessons are getting through to them.
Physical Activity and Nutrition
Obesity during adolescence is a growing public health issue that carries with it a number of lasting consequences. Such as Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, and premature cardiovascular disease. During this age it is extremely important for families to continue the healthy eating and activity habits they worked to build during childhood. Besides the physical benefits of engaging in physical activity, teenagers’ mental health is positively affected as well. Serotonin and endorphins (the body’s “happy chemicals”) are released by the brain, as well as Cortisol to help regulate stress levels.
Teens need a higher caloric intake than adults do in order to provide support for their body’s growth. The exact calorie need varies depending on a variety of factors, but on average an adolescent girl needs about 2,200 calories a day and an adolescent boy needs between 2,500 – 3,000 calories per day. Between school, friend groups, and any extra curricular activities, teenagers are increasingly busy. Which can make getting a nutritious, balanced diet harder to accommodate. This is where they need their family!
- Provide them with a variety of nutrient-rich foods from all the food groups.
- Do your best to limit their intake of foods that are high in added sugars and fat (soda, candy bars, etc.).
- During meals, give them proper portion sizes and then let them choose to get more if they are still hungry.
Healthy Habits for Teenagers
As teenagers grow more independent, they have more control over their own decisions. Give them the knowledge to make the proper decisions when it comes to their eating habits.
Much like younger children, teenagers need plenty of quality rest to help their overall health. Limiting screen time before bed and sticking to a routine can help them get the best night sleep possible.
How Family Wellness Affects Other Family Members
If we are going to promote wellness in regards to the entire family, we must also take a look at the impacts that it has on each member; the child, the teenager, and the parent(s). Each member of the family must reach a balance between pursuing their personal goals with contributing to the overall well-being of the remaining family members. Different age groups have different wellness needs that must be provided by or enhanced by those around them.
Learn more about how children’s wellness is effected by their family.
Adults’ well-being is just as dependent on their family as their kids’ is.
Learn how healthier habits benefit the entire family.
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