Slideshow: Food as Fuel

  • food as fuel slideshow

    Why Do We Eat? To Fuel Up!

    Just like cars need gas to go, you need food to help you get up and go. 

    When you eat, your body breaks down food into tiny parts. Then it is sent into your blood and carried throughout your body to your bones, brain, and organs like your stomach and heart. 

    Food gives us energy!

  • food as fuel slideshow

    When Not to Fuel Up

    Sometimes, people eat because they're bored, even if they're not hungry. 

    But when your body doesn’t need that extra fuel, the food can cause you to gain unhealthy weight.

  • food as fuel slideshow

    Food and Feelings

    Sometimes, people use food to comfort themselves when they are sad or stressed. That’s not healthy. Food can’t fix feelings.

    Find a better way to get rid of those feelings. Stressed out? Play catch or do some jumping jacks. Feeling sad? Find a parent or friend to talk to.

  • food as fuel slideshow

    What About Special Occasions?

    It’s OK to celebrate and eat "sometimes foods" like cake and ice cream every once in a while. But if you eat them all the time, it can make you gain unhealthy weight.

  • food as fuel slideshow

    So When Should I Fuel Up?

    It’s a good idea to eat three meals a day, along with a couple of healthy snacks. Start your day by eating breakfast. Then, space out your eating times so that you don’t get too hungry in between. 

    Eat foods with fiber, like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Fiber helps you feel fuller longer and is really good for your stomach.

  • food as fuel slideshow

    I’m… So… Hungry!

    Have you ever gone a long time without eating? Did you feel like you had no energy? Your food fuel tank was probably too low. When that happens, you’ve let yourself get too hungry.

    That’s not good for your body and it makes it harder to pick healthy foods. You feel like you want to eat the first thing you see. That's why it's good to eat healthy food when you're hungry. And don't skip meals!

  • food as fuel slideshow

    Pick the Right Fuel

    You need energy to do things you love. Eat right to get good fuel. 

    • You need protein. Protein is good for your muscles. Lean meats and chicken are great proteins. Low-fat yogurt, beans, and cheese have protein, too.
    • You need energy. Carbs can give you fast energy. Vegetables, fruits, and whole-grain breads and pastas are healthy carbs.
  • food as fuel slideshow

    Don’t Overload Your Plate

    Too much fuel?  You need food to live, but not too much. When you give your body more food than it needs, it turns into extra body fat -- the kind you don’t need. It can make you sick.

    Make sure you only eat kid-sized portions -- not as much as grown-ups eat. Here’s a trick: When you put food on your plate, make sure it is about the same size as your fist.

  • food as fuel slideshow

    Take Your Time

    When you eat, it takes your brain 20 minutes to get the message that you’ve had enough. If you slow down and enjoy each bite, you’ll give your brain a chance to catch up, and you’ll avoid overeating and feeling stuffed.

    Before you grab seconds, wait a few minutes. You want to feel satisfied, not totally full. Don’t wait to feel stuffed to stop eating.

  • food as fuel slideshow

    Fuel Smart

    Choosing between unhealthy foods? Make the best choices you can.

    If you’re at home and don’t have any healthy snacks, ask if you can help shop for healthy snacks next time. If you’re eating out, ask an adult which choice they think is healthiest.

    Remember, what you eat gives your body energy. Filling your tank with the best fuel will make you feel your best all day!