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Eating Right for Better Health

My 14 year old daughter is 5 feet 2 inches tall. She weighs 81 pounds. Although she is quite active in sports and other physical activities, her eating habits have me concerned. She never tires from playing but I think she is underweight. Her diet consists of deep fried chicken, potato salad, pizza, pasta and green beans. Since she has not had her menstrual period, I’m worried that she may need help.

Regarding her menstruation cycle, there is nothing to worry about. Based on her age, the menstruation starts from the age of nine to 6 to 16. As certain medial journals report that average age is 12.8; others have 13.5 as the norm. However, a girl requires a certain percentage of body fat to menstruate (approximately, 17 percent of the total weight). Although your daughter’s weight does not trigger any serious concern, A few extra pounds may be helpful on she starts menstruating.

Your daughter’s weight puts her in the central range of girls her age. She is in the lowest quarter of her age group. However, your daughter’s diet is nutritionally lacking. Explain the importance of a well balanced diet and how it impacts the body’s anatomy and functions. Try to get her to replace the fried chicken with lean non fried foods. Keep healthy foods around the house to encourage better eating habits.

Here are few foods of thought for your daughter:

• Cancers are caused by processed foods such as fried chicken.

• Fruits and vegetables are healthy smart foods

• Eat a wide array of colorful different foods – as each is loaded with different components

• When vegetables and fruits are consumed, it helps ward off colds, chronic diseases as well as vitamin deficiencies.

• A diet should consist of two-thirds vegetables and a third of protein foods

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