Around this age you will be building habits that will last a lifetime. You’ll learn a lot by watching other family members and friends. Even television can influence what you eat – although it’s usually the less nutritious foods that are advertised. Your challenge will be to link what you’re learning about nutrition in school and at home – into good food choices. This is a time when you will eat outside of your own home more often – so you’ll be making more food choices of your own.


Thankfully we are all different. That’s what makes each one of us unique. You will see differences even among your close friends. There are many different body shapes and sizes. Some teenagers may be growing up to 2 inches each year during this time, others a little less.

It’s a time to be enjoying good energy giving foods for this rapid growth!

Eating the right foods will give you the energy you need if you want to exercise, go out with your friends or if you just need a boost to get up and at it! If you’re into sport, then eating well will also mean you’ll be able to train and compete better, and for longer. Eating well will also help your mind stay sharp.
Your skeleton will also be on its way to reaching peak bone density at this time in your life, so calcium rich foods, like low fat milk, cheese and yoghurt are important to build a good strong scaffolding for the body.

Energy Tips – tips on how to have lots of energy

By the morning, your body has been without food for many hours, so it needs refuelling. Think of your mobile phone – your body also needs recharging daily.

To keep your energy levels up, eat breakfast. Top a high fibre breakfast cereal or wholemeal bread with a chopped banana. If you have time whizz up a smoothie with natural yoghurt and fresh fruit and juice.


Eat regularly

On top of your three meals a day, boost your energy with healthy snacks such as:

  • Fruit – choose fresh, dried or a smoothie
  • Flavoured yoghurt or a glass of low fat milk
  • Oat cereal bar
  • Packet of mixed nuts and seeds

Eat foods rich in iron

We need lots of iron, and girls need even more than boys. Iron helps the body make haemoglobin, the red pigment in our blood, which carries oxygen around the body. We need this oxygen to produce energy.

These foods below contain iron:

  • Red meat such as beef and lamb
  • Fortified breakfast cereals
  • Wholegrain bread
  • Green vegetables such as broccoli and spinach
  • Dried fruit such as apricots or raisins

Keep well hydrated