Parenting teenagers can be tough, and their physical and emotional changes as they enter adolescence require careful attention. Adequate nutrition is essential to helping them manage these transitions – something many of us learn from personal experience! To ensure teens get the best out of their diets during this period, it’s important to understand how probiotics play a vital role in adolescent health.
As soon as my elder daughter entered her teenage years, we began to experience tensions and arguments more frequently in the house. I wanted to make sure she was eating healthily, but it can be difficult to keep up with her ever-changing tastes.
Adolescence marks a time of intense physical and lifestyle transformation for teens, often leaving them vulnerable to the effects that these changes can have on their health and happiness. It is crucial to acknowledge the impact those shifts in the environment can make during this formative period of their life as teenagers.
Adolescence brings a host of physical changes to teenagers, primarily in the form of hormonal and brain development. These often-overlooked changes can have profound effects on adolescents’ emotions as they navigate their way through this tumultuous period of their lives.
During the teenage years, young people often experience physical and mental issues such as acne, weight gain, fatigue, anxiety, and self-esteem problems. These can be helped with lifestyle changes or by improving gut microbiome health. In addition to these challenges they may face increased external pressures due to exam stress or peer pressure related to appearance or trends – making it an especially challenging period of life! Thankfully, a simple change in their diet can make all the difference.
Teenage diet and gut health
My elder daughter was no stranger to teenage acne, which is why we turned to probiotics. In her case, they worked wonders! She thanked me for introducing probiotics to her diet and it felt good to see the changes they made.
Good gut health is essential to keep hormones in check and promote overall wellness, but constipation can be detrimental as it prevents the body from properly excreting ‘old’ hormones. This creates an imbalance that leads to further hormonal issues.
To promote healthy digestive health among teens, it’s essential to introduce a diet rich in fiber and fresh fruit & veggies. Additionally, adequate hydration levels need to be maintained for regularity and exercise encouraged – school sports or family activities on the weekends can help with this!
During weekends, I make it a point to cook meals rich in fiber for my daughter, as well as snacks that provide her with essential vitamins and minerals. I’ve also promised to take her out for walks & hikes whenever she feels like it – a nice way to get some fresh air, exercise, and relax!
Research has demonstrated that taking probiotics, particularly the strain Bifidobacterium lactis BB-12®, can help alleviate constipation and support regularity. This powerful supplement offers a natural way to improve bowel transit time and promote healthier digestive functioning for those suffering from gastrointestinal issues.
Food with Probiotics
Probiotics have been linked to a wide range of health benefits, from reducing the inflammation in teens’ guts and preventing necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) to protecting against diarrhea in teens taking antibiotics. Furthermore, probiotic-rich foods may help reduce discomfort due to colic as well as lessen eczema symptoms among teens. Additionally, they might be effective at fighting off respiratory tract infections and relieving IBS symptoms in teens and adults!
Fermented foods are packed with live microbes, which could have a positive impact on gut health and even can be used to enhance Athletic performance, as I outline in a previous post here. However, it can be challenging to tell if these effects come from the probiotic-rich cultures or simply due to their nutritional value. All that’s certain is that by including fermented food in your teen’s diet, you’re providing them access to beneficial bacteria for optimal well-being!
1. Yogurt (with Live Cultures)
Yogurt, made from fermented milk containing live cultures, is a beneficial food for children suffering from digestive issues such as diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome. This dairy treat can provide relief to teens’ tummies while also being an enjoyable snack! Yogurt has two distinct varieties – those with active probiotic cultures, and those that have been processed to the point where these beneficial bacteria are no longer present. Knowing which type of yogurt you’re eating can make a big difference in terms of health benefits!
My two daughters enjoy yogurt as an after-school snack and I love knowing that they’re getting their daily dose of probiotics! It makes me feel like I’m doing something right as a parent. Yogurt is a great vehicle for taking probiotic supplements – mix it in with your teen’s favorite fruit flavors and they’ll be getting the vitamins & minerals their gut needs to stay healthy.
Kefir is a probiotic-rich, fermented milk drink that’s loaded with beneficial bacteria. This delicious beverage can help protect against bacterial infection and reduce the risk of heart disease while promoting bone health, improved digestion, and lower blood pressure – all in one glass! Enjoy this superfood for maximum benefits to your body’s well-being. Personally, water Kefir is my preferred probiotic drink. I would recommend Nordic wellness drinks who are paving the way in this space.
Kefir is made by combining kefir grains with cow’s milk or goat’s milk. It has become increasingly popular, especially among teens and those who have trouble digesting lactose as it comes in many delicious flavors such as mango, blueberry, and strawberry! With its high potency of gut-friendly strains compared to yogurt; having just a few ounces for breakfast can be incredibly beneficial to your overall health.
I love how my teenage daughters enjoys kefir! It’s a tasty way to get the probiotics they need while having fun. I often add it to their smoothies or whip up a parfait with yogurt and fresh fruit for them – both of which are great options that make getting their daily dose of probiotics convenient and delicious!
Pickles are a delicious, tangy treat made by fermenting cucumbers in salt and water or vinegar. During the fermentation process, lactic acid develops creating active cultures that give pickles their signature sour flavor. So pucker up your taste buds for this flavorful snack!
Pickles made with vinegar may not contain the beneficial bacteria found in live and active cultures, but don’t let that stop you from experiencing delicious pickled cucumbers! Try making your own at home – simply use salt and water to get started.
The first time I introduced pickles to my teen daughters, they were skeptical – but once they tasted them, there was no turning back! I love how pickles are an easy and enjoyable way to add probiotics to their diet. Plus, it’s a fun activity for us to do together in the kitchen!
Buttermilk is a popular dairy product that may contain live, active cultures. However, due to processing many store-bought varieties don’t have these beneficial microbes present in them. Make sure to keep an eye out for cultured buttermilk! You can easily craft your own at home by adding live, active cultures to fresh milk or cream – a simple and delicious way of introducing that classic tangy flavor into your kitchen.
Let your teens enjoy the delicious tangy taste and creamy texture of homemade buttermilk! Not only does it bring an incredible flavor to their favorite dishes, but its probiotic content also helps protect against disease while promoting good gut health. It’s a winning combination for everyone involved!
Cheese is a popular and delicious food item that can not only be enjoyed as part of meals, but also has the added benefit of containing live cultures! Commonly found in types like Gouda, mozzarella, or cheddar cheese- these living cultures are beneficial to our health. Look for labels stating “with live and active cultures” when shopping so you know which cheeses contain this extra nutritional value.
My daughters’ love for cheese is a great way to make sure they’re getting the essential nutrients their bodies need! From omelets and sandwiches to delicious snack platters, this dairy delight provides an array of tasty meals that offer both calcium and probiotic benefits. Not only does it keep them healthy inside but also satisfies everyone’s taste buds – making it truly one of life’s greatest pleasures!
As a parent, it’s immensely rewarding to see positive results from introducing probiotics into our children’s diets. With the right knowledge of nutrition and diet during their teenage years, we can guide them in navigating this period with greater ease!