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I AM in Iowa Adolescents Making Choices to Control Their Future Teen:Health, Relationship, Body and Sexuality

Tag: cooking

Apr 15

5 Things to Love about the Farmer’s Market

Posted By iamincontrol | April 15, 2014

By Addie

Now that it’s springtime, I officially have my countdown ready for the first farmer’s market of the season. And it’s right around the corner! Below are some reasons for you to check out a local farmer’s market in your area this summer.

  1. Fresh (and local) produce—Fresh fruits and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet, and there is no better place to search for those than a farmer’s market. On top of that, buying local is the new trend, and it’s a good one. Not only does it help the local economy by supporting small businesses, it can be cheaper than supermarkets if you buy produce that’s in season.
  2. Free samples—Who can say no to free food? If you walk around the farmer’s market, you will likely see a lot of free samples. Take this opportunity to try new foods; if you like what you taste, ask for recipes.
  3. Getting in your exercise—Being active and walking around to all of the vendors is an easy way to get in all your daily steps and you don’t even realize you are being active. If you have a dog, take him/her for a stroll as well as many of the farmer’s markets are dog friendly.
  4. A job—Many vendors look for extra help in the summer, especially since farmer’s markets tend to be in the evening or on the weekends. If you are a people person and love to be outside, this may be a great option for a part-time job. Contact a local business if you know they are involved to ask about a job, or ask face-to-face while visiting. You never know if they might be looking another hand.
  5. Socializing—Go with a group of friends and spend time together. This is a great way to hang out with your friends that doesn’t have to cost much. Want to go by yourself? There is always a good chance you will run into someone that you know. The people that are working are usually friendly and willing to talk to anyone. And even if you don’t see someone you know, what’s not to love about people watching?!

To see what produce is in season when, visit this website.

You are in control of eating healthy, local foods.

Feb 18

Choosing the Healthy Lifestyle

Posted By iamincontrol | February 18, 2014

Teens cooking
By Brittany

High school is an important time to start making healthy choices for the rest of your life, especially food choices. At school, you are surrounded by many different food options in the lunch cafeteria, both healthy and unhealthy. Sometimes it was hard for me to choose the healthy choices over the yummier looking options. Being on the cross-country team, I learned that my workouts were affected by the foods I ate. I needed to learn to make healthy choices, even when the junk food looked better.

The big thing to remember is the habits you start creating in high school will transfer on to college. You need to practice healthy eating habits now so you can do it later in life. In college it gets even harder to make the right choice when parents aren’t around to supervise. Homemade nutritious meals turn into fast food meals.

Eating healthy will benefit you in many ways. In high school I was growing rapidly and was trying to perform better in sports, so proper nutrition was a must for me. I wanted to become the best cross-country runner I could by eating well. Running helped build my confidence and emphasized the importance of eating healthy. I noticed changes in my food selection and learned to choose the healthier choice. I have now established a healthy lifestyle from high school and college and love the impact it has on my life.

This website talks about how nutrition will help high school athletes perform their best. I recommend reading it for ideas and starting to make healthy choices today that carry on forever in your life!

Jan 21

Seasonal Eating: Citrus Fruits

Posted By iamincontrol | January 21, 2014

Citrus fruits
Eating food that’s in season has many benefits – both for you and for the environment.  It’s probably grown closer to you and doesn’t have to travel as far, plus it has the greatest flavor and nutrient packed punch when it’s in season.

So today we’re going to talk about citrus fruits.  Citrus fruits include oranges, grapefruits, limes, lemons, and some less common fruits like pomelos and tangerines.  They are ready in the winter (right now!) and are a low calorie, healthy snack.

Here are some of our favorite ways to eat citrus fruits:

  • Eat it by itself – maybe not for lemons and limes, but definitely for the other citrus fruits.  An orange makes a great on the go snack and can be eaten anywhere, anytime.  Grapefruit takes a little longer to eat, but it’s definitely worth it (can you tell it’s my favorite?).
  • In a fruit salad – segment the fruit (like this) and add it to your favorite mix of fruits.  Add some yogurt for a more filling breakfast or snack.
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Oct 1

Affordable Activities to Do with Friends

Posted By iamincontrol | October 1, 2013

Popcorn for movie night
The results are in!  Here was last month’s poll question:

Do you ever avoid hanging out with friends for financial reasons?

  • Yes. Everything we do costs money (going to the movies, going out to eat, etc.). (42%)
  • No. My parents pay for everything. (42%)
  • No. I have a job and like spending my money doing stuff with my friends. (14%)
  • I spend most of my time in sports or activities that do not cost money. (0%)

If you ever avoid doing things with your friends because you don’t have the money, try one of the activities below to save some cash.

  • Organize a game night – Maybe board games don’t sound that exciting, but they can be really fun.  Apples to Apples is especially hilarious to play with your friends, and chances are, at least one of your friends owns it.
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Sep 17

Apple Season

Posted By iamincontrol | September 17, 2013

By Alyssa

Guess what guys?  It’s APPLE season!  Pretty much my favorite time of the year.  Apples are delicious, healthy, and they make some of the easiest snacks and desserts.

First, let’s talk about how healthy apples are.  You know how they say an apple a day will keep the doctor away?  Well, if you get the flu, I’m not saying an apple is going to cure you.  However, it does have some great nutrients your body needs.  For one, apples have fiber that keeps you full longer.  They also have Vitamin C and potassium that your body needs to stay healthy.  Delicious and healthy?  Doesn’t get much better than that.

Here are some of my favorite healthy ways to enjoy apples this season:

  1. Apples with Peanut Butter – Spread 1 tablespoon of peanut butter on some apple slices for an easy afterschool snack or breakfast.  Two healthy things combined to keep you full until your next meal.
  2. Applesauce – Seriously, SO easy.  Head over to, one of my favorite sites for healthy recipes, for a microwave applesauce recipe.
  3. Read More
Jul 16

How much protein do I really need?

Posted By iamincontrol | July 16, 2013

Teen athlete
By Alex

Are YOU an athlete? Do you know how much protein YOU need every day?

First of all, are you a strength athlete – are you in wrestling, football or weightlifting? Or are you mostly an endurance athlete – cross country runner, cycler, or swimmer? Different types of activity, your gender and height, and the amount of muscle mass you have all come into play when it comes to finding that right amount of protein you need.

How to Calculate Your Ideal Amount of Protein

An average person is supposed to get around 0.8 grams of protein for every kilogram of their body weight (1 kg = 2.2 lbs). If we did the math, a 77 kg (170-pound) young male student would only need about 62 grams of protein daily. Having a 3-ounce piece (size of your palm) of lean meat (lean beef, chicken, or fish) three times a day completely satisfies that recommendation.

If a student is a strength-training athlete, he/she would need between 1.4 and 1.8 grams of protein for every kilogram of body weight. And if he or she is an endurance athlete, 1.2 to 1.4 grams of protein would be considered enough.

You can automatically calculate the right range of protein for your body using this website.

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Jun 11

Body Image Ups & Downs

Posted By iamincontrol | June 11, 2013

Body Image Ups & Downs
By Jessica

All through my high school experience, I had a hard time with my body image. I have always been heavier than I should be ever since I was in middle school.  This led to many body image issues and confidence problems I had in high school. By the time I got to high school, all my friends had lost their baby fat and had become taller and skinnier, while I stayed the same.  It wasn’t until I was a junior in high school where I became really self-conscious about myself.

When I was a junior in high school, my friends began to go out more. They began to go to dances and parties. They all would wear skirts or tight dresses. I felt like I couldn’t wear the same types of clothing since my body type was different than theirs.  After this I became super self-conscious about my body image. I wasn’t obese, but just a bit bigger than my friends. My friends would also go shopping, and it got to a point where I didn’t want to go because I wasn’t able to get the same styles of clothing as them because we had different body shapes.

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May 14

Diet Foods or Diet Disasters?

Posted By iamincontrol | May 14, 2013

Swim suit
By Caitlyn

Swim Suit.

No two words in a teenager’s life can strike as much body image self-doubt as “swim suit”.  It is common for young people to dread wearing revealing summer clothes after a long cold winter break.  Unfortunately, teenagers are notorious for having poor diets filled with convenience foods and pre-packaged snacks.  When faced with this prospect of wearing a bathing suit, teens can easily fall victim to diet traps thanks to sneaky marketing techniques and advertising campaigns.  (For example, take the Special K Challenge.  They tell you that you will lose weight by replacing two meals each day with a bowl of Special K cereal, but it’s not because it’s extra nutritious.  It’s just because it has lower calories, which can be achieved many other, healthier ways.)

When teenagers take drastic measures like these crash diets to lose weight, it can lead to fatigue, mood swings, and binges.  I want to share with you some healthy ways to stay fit and avoid diet food disasters.

Step 1:  Look past the front of the box claims.  Marketers will often stretch the nutritional truth of their products to get unknowing consumers to purchase them.  It maysay “Low Fat” on the front, but if you look at the ingredients, it might have lots of added sugar to make up for the lack of taste.  You can learn more about what’s actually in your food by following Step 2.

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Apr 16

Spring into Action: Learn to Cook

Posted By iamincontrol | April 16, 2013

Learn to Cook
How do you feel about getting in the kitchen and helping with dinner?  Do your parents always cook for you?  That sounds great now, but once you head off on your own after high school, you’re going to wish you learned a little something about cooking before you left the nest.  Fast food and TV dinners get old pretty quickly.  What better time to start cooking than spring, when lots of fresh, healthy produce is in season?  Here are some helpful ideas for beginners in the kitchen.

5 Tips for Learning to Cook

  1. Ask a family member or friend to teach you.  They will be flattered that you asked, and you’ll get to watch someone in action.
  2. Choose easy recipes to start.  Recipes with fewer ingredients and steps will probably turn out better if you’re a new cook, so start small!  You can even find recipes specifically for teens (check your local library for cookbooks like this one).
  3. Use in-season produce.  Produce that’s in season tastes better, plus it’s cheaper.  You can visit your local farmer’s market that should start up in April or May, grow your own, or just visit your grocery store.  Check out a list of all the produce that’s in season here.
  4. Watch cooking videos.  Nothing inspires me to cook more than watching Food Network or YouTube clips where someone is making delicious food.  For example, here’s a video on how to make pancakes.
  5. Don’t be afraid to fail.  Everyone does at first.

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Nov 19

Healthy Holiday Eating

Posted By iamincontrol | November 19, 2012

By Pat

Having too many of these?

We all look forward to the holidays.  Vacation days mean more time with friends and family.  It is also a time when there are lots of desserts and high-calorie foods.  Here are some tips on healthier holiday eating.

There will be time to go to the mall and shop, especially “Black Friday”
Before you go, have a healthy snack to curb your appetite.  If you start shopping early, try eating something healthy in the car or on the way.  This can help to prevent overeating later in the day.  That way you won’t spend money on high calorie unhealthy snacks, which will leave you with more money to buy those special items you have been wanting.  Some ideas for healthy on-the-go snacks are an apple, some grapes, or a peanut butter sandwich on whole wheat bread.

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