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Try This: Vegetable Challenge for Teens

Teens' healthy eating recommendations include four to five servings of vegetables a day. Yet, the wealth of nutrients in veggies that help you grow and stay healthy don't seem to be enough to override their bad rap. If you stay away from vegetables, it may be that you don't know them well enough yet.

To help you explore the world of veggies and find some you like, pick a couple of the vegetable challenges below (or try them all if you're really the daring type) and see how many you can do.

Think of all the vegetables you can. Make a list and put it on the fridge. Pick two different veggies to try this week.
Take a vegetable in your lunch every day to school for a week. Try carrots, cucumbers sprinkled with cider vinegar, or vegetable soup.
Instead of pepperoni or sausage, get a vegetable on your pizza. Try broccoli, bell peppers, zucchini, spinach, or mushrooms.
When you go to the grocery store, look for the strangest veggie you can find. Buy it. When you get home, look up that veggie online. Find an easy recipe and prepare it for your family to try. Give yourself extra points if everyone eats it. Bonus points if everyone likes it!
Try a new vegetable and post something about it on Facebook. See how many "Likes" and comments you can get.
Play a game with your best friend. Text each other when you eat a vegetable and keep score on the other person. The first one to eat a vegetable every day gets a point. For each different veggie you eat, you get another point. Compare totals, and whoever has the most points at the end of the week wins.
Practice for your SAT essay. Imagine that this is your ticket into a great college and craft your very best essay on "What's your favorite vegetable? Why?" or "What vegetable do you hate the most? Why?"
Bonus Round: If you're bored at the library, look up and read a few paragraphs of Thoreau opining on beans in Walden, or look up what George Washington Carver made from sweet potatoes.

Get to know these veggies: Broccoli, Carrots, Edamame, Kale, and Sweet Potatoes.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Daniel Brennan, MD on December 23, 2013