Healthy Eating, Happy Living


Hannah Earley, Reporter

As a teen you have been told that watching what you eat is very important at such an age of growth. But do we really listen to those who tell you to eat healthier? With junk food being the most commonly chosen snack for a majority of teens, it can be difficult to suppress such a habit.

There are hundreds of foods that are very unhealthy for teenagers to snack on. Some of the most unhealthy foods include: sugary breakfast cereals, packaged lunches such as kid cuisine and lunchables, snack cakes, fruit snacks, and packaged chips and crackers.

All of these foods are most likely processed snacks from a large factory. This is one of many ways that add to the lack of health found in these foods. For example, sugary breakfast cereals are a quick and easy go to breakfast. Yet, one bowl of Cap’n Crunch cereal contains 11.18 grams of sugar.

There are many things can be switched out for sugary cereal in the morning, such as a piece of fruit with natural sugars instead, or a piece of toast with almond butter or agave. These options will give people more energy to start their day and will help them to feel less hungry throughout school until lunch.

“I have cereal every morning, but I try to go for the cereals made without gluten or a bunch of sugar,” said So. Annie Watson.

Although packaged lunches are not the most common among teens, the meat included in the meals are some of the most unhealthy meats. Most are made with GMO’s and contain many preservatives which are very bad for dietary health.

A quote from a Livestrong article on lunch meat says, “If you do choose to eat lunch meat, choose a healthier variety such as lean, low-sodium turkey breast instead of salami, bologna or pastrami.”

Fruit snacks are very common among teens because they are a quick and easy go to snack during school snack. Most fruit snacks are filled with sugar and unnatural flavors. “I try to go for something with natural sugars such as fruit when getting a school snack, I will also go for all natural granola bars made without the chocolate coating,” said So. Edde Lyons.

The snack cake phase is slowly fading among many teens.

“I ate a twinkie once and will never eat one again,” said So. Kalyn Alexus. Snack cakes such as twinkies, zingers, or cosmic brownies are filled with many unhealthy preservatives which makes them able to sit on their own in room temperature for years and years.

Lastly, packaged chips and crackers also should be approached differently. It is always better to trade out white crackers for whole wheat, and to go for simply made chips.

“I like to eat rice cakes instead of white crackers or chips during school,” said Animas So. Lily Bistantz.

By trading out packaged crackers for any other whole wheat snack you are making a healthier choice. “I like to keep my kids healthy by making the best choices when grocery shopping,” said Durango mother of five Caroline Dellinger.