Archive | July, 2013

Food Allergy Bullying: A Deadly Joke

I’ve had a severe shellfish allergy for almost my entire life. Lucky for me, shrimp cocktail isn’t a classic treat for school birthday celebrations, and lobster isn’t used to make a common frying oil. But still, every time I order food, I have to tell the restaurant about my allergy. Every time I eat at a buffet, I have to be sure that the tongs I’m using weren’t just used to pick up a crab cake. It becomes normal, but it’s scary living a life where every meal is potentially […]


Teen Nutrition — Do Teens Need More Omega-3s?

Yes! According to recent reports, kids and adults still aren’t hitting the omega-3 mark, and brand-new research in rats shows that this nutritional deficiency might get passed down genetically—affecting the mental health of generations of teens to come. That’s pretty powerful stuff, right? So let’s talk about why these fatty acids are so essential for good teen nutrition, and how you can get teens to work them into their diets. Omega-3s (found mostly in certain varieties of fatty fish, oil, seeds, and nuts) don’t just have an anti-inflammatory effect on […]


Meet One Crafty Teen

Why am I writing about a craft blog on a site devoted to the health and well-being of teenagers? Well, as those of you who subscribe to Choices already know, we heart blogging teens. (If you haven’t seen our story on these industrious powerhouses, here’s a link to 15 and Famous). And Ty, the 13-year-old genius behind Know and Tell Crafts, is definitely someone we should all keep our eyes on. I think he’s talented even by adult standards, but his tutorials are just the kind of thing that I […]


Internet Safety for Teens: Keeping Your Profile Private from the Facebook Graph Search

When it comes to internet safety for teens, the phrase “new search engine” isn’t exactly striking fear into the hearts of adults everywhere. But with the recent launch of Facebook’s new graph search, maybe it should be. So what makes the graph search so much scarier than the Google and Bing searches we’ve come to know so well? Probably the biggest difference that separates Facebook’s graph from the pack is that Facebook searches people rather than websites. And it doesn’t limit your search range to people you know or are friends […]


Have You Heard About the Thigh Gap?

If not, go ahead and Google it, but prepare to be horrified. The “thigh gap” is a dangerous thinspiration trend that has taken off swiftly and fanatically via social media sites like Tumblr. Girls reblog waist-down photos of naturally skinny celebs, rake-thin models, and real girls just like them, emphasizing the slight space that exists between their upper legs. It has become a badge of honor for those who have it—or are able achieve it. And for those who don’t, the thigh gap is a perilous and precarious end-goal, fueling […]


Safety for Teenagers – Would You Spot a Drowning Victim?

With all that vigorous splashing, those flailing arms, the desperate cries for help—there’s no way you would miss the signs that a child is struggling in the water, right? If you answered yes, then watch the video above—and read on. Because sometimes the most common sign that someone is drowning . . . is that they don’t look like they’re drowning at all. That’s the message Mario Vittone, a Coast Guard vet and water-safety expert, is trying to spread this summer. And it’s a crucial safety message for teenagers. In […]


Teen Of The Year—#Malala

Every teenager—no wait—every human should watch this speech which Malala Yousafzai gave to the United Nations Youth Assembly on ‘Malala Day,’ her 16th birthday. Less than a year ago, the Pakistani teenager was shot in the head by the Taliban for campaigning for girls’ education. But that just made her stronger. Her call to action is an inspiration to us all. Malala will change the world. To read her speech go here and to watch an excellent documentary about this amazing young woman go here.  


Teenage Fitness: We’ve Got The Scoop On Hoops

Who doesn’t want to get behind teenage fitness? But what if your teen is lazy or just not into sports. We’ve got an idea! Introducing the humble hula hoop and join a world of joyful movement! I could tell you that hooping is a low-impact, high-energy workout that improves core strength, tones your stomach, arms, thighs and butt, and burns approximately the same amount of calories as spending an equivalent time on a treadmill, but your exercise-hating kids will not care. (However, here is a basic hula hooping workout for […]


Does High School Traumatize Us for Life?

That was the question posed, just a few months ago, by writer Jennifer Senior in her exhaustive cover story on the possibly “corrosive” effects of high school for New York magazine. And to be completely honest, it’s still got us scratching our heads! In the article, the author summarizes the current science on adolescent development and high school socialization to try to tease out the true impact of the teenage years—and to understand why such a short span of our personal history has such lasting psychological importance. And while no […]


Healthy Texting

As we all know, it can be a real challenge to get teens to pay attention to anything that’s more than 140 characters. So when we came across this new study from the University of Arizona that looked at the effectiveness of texting health information to teens, we were pretty eager to know more. Over the course of a year, the 177 adolescents participating in the study received daily health-conscious texts from the researchers. Then the teens gave their feedback on everything from content and style to frequency and form. […]