Food and You: A Guide to Healthy Habits for Teens

By Marjolijn Bijlefeld; Sharon K. Zoumbaris | Go to book overview

2

THE BASICS

Imagine you just got a new computer—a state-of-the-art fast machine capable of an amazing number of processes—but the software you’re running on it is slow and buggy. What happens? The computer is clearly not performing to its potential. It will be sluggish, and you’ll probably experience frequent system crashes.

In a way, your body is like that computer because it also has incredible capabilities. The software you run on is what you put in—the food you eat. If that “software” is a lopsided diet of junk food, you’ll have the same performance problem as the computer: sluggishness and system crashes in terms of frequent illnesses or lack of energy. Dangerous substances, such as tobacco, alcohol, and street drugs, are to your body what a computer virus is to an operating system: you risk serious failure.

And there’s one more element. The greatest computer in the world is useless if it’s not running. That’s the analogy for “couch potatoes.” Physical fitness is a combination of diet and exercise. It doesn’t require you to run a four-minute mile or win a body-building competition, but it does require effort.

Unlike a computer, you cannot upgrade your body five years from now. The body you’re in is the only one you’ll be issued. The good news is that your body will respond to the changes you make. Improve your

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Food and You: A Guide to Healthy Habits for Teens
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction xiii
  • 1 - Making Healthy Choices 1
  • 2 - The Basics 13
  • Additional Reading 31
  • 3 - Going Veg! 33
  • 4 - Fast-Food Trap 47
  • Additional Reading 60
  • 5 - Get off the Couch 61
  • Additional Reading 74
  • 6 - Losing Weight the Healthy Way 75
  • Additional Reading 86
  • 7 - Risky Business: Tobacco, Alcohol, and Drugs 87
  • 8 - Be a Smart Food Shopper 109
  • Additional Reading 125
  • 9 - Setting Up Your First Kitchen 127
  • 10 - Eating Disorders 143
  • 11 - Special Diets 153
  • Appendix A 171
  • Appendix B 189
  • Appendix C 193
  • Appendix D 195
  • Appendix E 221
  • Appendix F 223
  • Appendix G 227
  • Index 247
  • About the Authors 253
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