Keep it affordable. Keeping a teenage boy full can be expensive. But Orcutt knows lots of penny-saving tips:
·Buy frozen fruits and vegetables. “You can find really great deals, and the nutrients sometimes are better than in the foods sitting in the produce section.”
·Buy in bulk. Barley, brown rice, oats, nuts and many other staples are readily available in bulk, either in your grocery store or at club stores such as Costco.
·Ration the protein. “It’s a mistake to think that teens need large amount of protein,” Orcutt says. “A one-pound salmon serves four people in our family.” She suggests limiting portions, “not covering the plate.” And, she adds, a vegetarian meal once or twice a week is healthful and can cut costs.
·Pick low-cost foods. “Eggs make a terrific meal, and even if they go up to $3 a dozen, they’re still a really great deal,” Orcutt says. And popcorn, which costs pennies compared with potato chips, “is wonderful stuff,” Orcutt says. “It’s high in fiber, really good for you.”
What a teen boy should eat in a day
Dietitian Sarah Krieger says an active 14-year-old boy can easily require 2,800 to 4,000 calories per day. She suggests checking www.choosemyplate.gov/myplate/index.aspx for an interactive tool that tells how to allocate those calories. Here’s how Krieger says Charlie’s daily diet should look:
·10 or more servings of grains, at least half whole grains. This category includes breads, pasta, rice, corn (including popcorn) and oats.
·6 or more cups of fruits and vegetables. They contain fiber, lots of vitamins and minerals and few calories.
·3 or more cups of milk. Stick with 1 percent fat or less to avoid saturated fat.
·7 ounces or more of protein. Healthful choices include chicken, salmon, shellfish, eggs, peanut butter, beans and tofu.
·At least 2 tablespoons of oil. Stick with heart-healthy plant-based oils such as canola and olive.Even potato chips — the plain kind, cooked in oil — can count.
·Less than 30 grams of saturated fat. These fats, found in such favorites as ice cream and fried foods, are a risk factor for heart disease.
·100 grams of sugar — that’s 400 calories’ worth. But for a snack, the sky’s the limit on tortilla chips with salsa.
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