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Who said snacks can’t be healthy? Teens require nutrient-dense meals and snacks on a regular basis to nourish their growing bodies.
Adolescents undergo a period of rapid growth and development that requires optimal intake of both macronutrients (fat, protein, and carbs) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals). Yet, many popular snacks are high in refined grains, added sugars, and other ingredients that should be limited in teenagers’ diets.
Here are some healthy alternatives:
1. Homemade snacks
a) Apple and nut butter sandwiches.
Nut butter and apple is a delicious and filling combo. Have your teen spread their favorite nut butter between sliced apple rounds for a fiber- and protein-rich snack.
b) Hummus jars.
Hummus is a filling dip made from chickpeas. It’s packed with fiber, magnesium, folate, manganese, healthy fats, and protein. Layer the bottom of a Mason jar with a few scoops of hummus, then fill the jar with sliced veggies like carrots, cucumber, celery, and zucchini for a nourishing snack.
2. Prepare beforehand
a) Overnight oats are prepped ahead of time so your teen can eat them right away. You can make snack-sized portions by using small 4-ounce (118-mL) Mason jars.
b) Chia seeds are loaded with nutrients that teens need, including protein, healthy fats, magnesium, calcium, manganese, and phosphorus. This peanut butter and jelly chia pudding recipe combines antioxidant-rich wild blueberries with creamy peanut butter and uses coconut milk so it’s safe for kids who need to avoid dairy.
3. High-protein snacks
a) Deviled eggs.
Eggs are an excellent source of protein, as well as healthy fats and a variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Deviled eggs are a tasty way to boost your teen’s protein intake. This healthy deviled egg recipe uses Greek yogurt.
b) Tuna and cheddar lunch box bites.
If your teen enjoys seafood, give these tuna and cheddar bites a try. Tuna is an excellent source of highly absorbable protein and provides omega-3 fats, which are important for teens’ brain development and function.
4. Nutrient-dense smoothies
a) Peanut butter and jelly date smoothie.
This smoothie recipe boasts a classic peanut butter and jelly taste without the added sugar. It’s naturally sweetened with dates and has a pop of protein from natural peanut butter.
Give it a try! Nutrition is very important for teens to grow healthy and strong. Use these recipes to incorporate into your diet.
Main Info Via Healthline