Posts Tagged ‘healthy eating’



Get ready! It’s Pennsylvania Teen Health Week!


Help us celebrate!Editor’s note: This is a guest post from Laura Offutt, MD, whose digital health resource, Real Talk with Dr. Offutt, developed Teen Health Week in collaboration with the College of Physicians of Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania Department of Health with support from the Pennsylvania Medical Society. Laura is a volunteer internal medicine physician, youth mentor and advocate who uses social media and her blog-based website to engage adolescents with teen-friendly, accurate health information.

Get ready! This week is Pennsylvania Teen Health Week! As proclaimed by Governor Tom Wolf, Pennsylvania Teen Health Week to focuses on the overall health of teenagers from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh and everywhere in between. Pennsylvania is the first and only state to have such a statewide proclamation and observance – but soon Teen Health Week will be a national celebration!

It’s easy to be a part of this special week.  Involvement can be as simple as hanging a flyer announcing the week in your school, church or community center, or wearing lime green, the official color of Teen Health Week.  We even have a toolkit which is full of easy ideas for activities, sample social media posts, and a variety of resources which are organized around the broad themes covered in the week.

Each day has a specific broad health focus:

Monday: Healthy Diet and Exercise

Tuesday: Violence Prevention

WednesdayMental Health

Thursday: Sexual Development and Health

Friday: Substance Use and Abuse

Why is Teen Health Week important? Well, did you know that in Pennsylvania more than a third of our young feel depressed or sad most days?  Or that many teens think that driving after smoking marijuana is safer than after drinking? Or that 1 in 3 high school students have been in an abusive relationship? Or that fewer than one-tenth of our teens broke a sweat for one short hour in the past week?  And that fifteen- to nineteen-year-olds account for nearly half of the cases of chlamydia and gonorrhea in Pennsylvania?

As you can see, there are plenty of good reasons to have a week focused on teen health here in Pennsylvania!

Don’t worry – it’s not too late to take part in this fun and special week!  Here are a few ideas of how you can be a part of it:

Wear lime green. It’s the official Teen Health Week color.

Get artsy. Use post-it notes and set up a New Year’s Resolution wall that week – where teens can put anonymous health resolutions for 2017! You know, like “eat a fruit every day.”  Or, “make sure to get enough sleep.”

Hashtag for health. Share or post educational announcements or social media posts focused on each day’s health theme with friends or students. (Find these in the toolkit, or on SafeTeens’ social media channels.)

Help us celebrate! Attend the kick-off at the State Capitol Building in Harrisburg on January 9th, or the Friday the 13th celebration at the Mutter Museum in Philadelphia.

Plus, there are a lot more easy and fun ideas already created for you in our toolkit!



March is National Nutrition Month!


March is National Nutrition Month. During this month, as well as every month, it’s important to make nutritious decisions that will improve your overall health and well-being.

Making better nutritional decisions doesn’t have to take a huge amount of time and effort. Little things can be changed about your daily routine that won’t seem like much work at all. One simple change that can be made is to start making breakfast in the morning a number one priority.

You have probably heard many times that breakfast is the most important meal of the day; however, many people skip it for a variety of different reasons.

Whether it is a large portioned breakfast or just something small on the go, breakfast is necessary in the morning in order to fuel you up after a long night’s rest when you aren’t consuming any type of nutrients.

The following are some benefits of a healthy morning breakfast:

-Those who eat breakfast in the morning are provided with the fuel to perform and concentrate better throughout the day. Without the nutrients that breakfast provides, you may go throughout your day feeling sluggish or unable to concentrate.

-Some people believe that skipping a meal such as breakfast will help you lose weight; however, studies have found that those who don’t eat breakfast end up consuming more food throughout the day.

-Your metabolism won’t start moving until you fuel yourself up on food. Having breakfast in the morning speeds up your metabolism, and allows you to start burning calories early on.

So what happens if you don’t have time to eat a well-balanced breakfast in the morning? Here are some ways that you can fit breakfast into your morning routine without setting aside too much time.

-Buy breakfast choices that can be eaten on the go. If you are looking for your morning cereal, many companies make small boxes that can be taken with you on the way out the door. Try switching it up for some healthier options as well, such as a cup of yogurt, granola bar or fruit, all of which can be eaten on the go.

-Prepare breakfast meals the night before. Having fruit already cut or breakfast sandwiches already prepared can cut your time in half the next morning when you are rushing out the door.

Small tweaks to your nutritional routine such as breakfast in the morning are easy ways to live a healthier and happier life. Use our tips to help make breakfast your most important meal of the day!