All About: Sports nutrition for young athletes

nutrition for young athletes

Proper Nutrition for young athletes is the foundation of their performance in a particular sport. It gives them better health and helps them to give their best on the field. Though most of the founders understand the importance of a healthy diet, you need to make additional concerns to fulfil the requirement of nutrition for young athletes. In this article, you will learn about the diet requirements of an athlete and how you can achieve them through proper planning and consumption of required foods.

How to create nutrition for young athletes?

The nutrition for young athletes is not necessarily the same. It varies according to their body size, weight, age, gaining goals, and training volume. The more complex your training will be, the more your requirements will be for nutrients, carbohydrates, etc.

nutrition for young athletes should include plenty of liquid foods, including fruits such as watermelon, grapes, etc.,  that keep the athlete’s body adequately hydrated. The general recommendation includes drinking about 8-10 ounces of water every 15 minutes during and after training. They should also consume 20-40 grams of carbohydrates every hour and 300-600 milligrams of Sodium each hour. You can easily sustain this requirement by eating good items like dates, bananas, fruits, water, resin, pretzels, figs, peanut butter, and honey sandwiches.

After difficult training, athletes should mainly go for about 16-20 ounces of fluid every hour. 10-20 grams of protein, and 20-40 grams of carbohydrate every hour. A quick post-workout nutrition food for athletes can be a fruit smoothie rich in protein and carbohydrates. You can add nuts and cow’s milk to make it healthier.

Minerals and Vitamins in diet plan for young athletes

nutrition for young athletes must also include vitamins and minerals such as Calcium and Iron. Calcium helps to build strong bones and resist breaking due to stress on them.

Calcium-rich foods include low-fat dairy products such as milk, yoghurt, cheese, green leafy vegetables such as broccoli etc. Iron, on the other hand, is an essential component of haemoglobin, an important oxygen carrier in the body. As an athlete, the requirement for oxygen increases in the body; thus, the athlete must possess adequate amounts of haemoglobin in the blood for a proper supply of oxygen. Iron-rich fruits include oriental green leafy vegetables, tuna, Salmon, dates, meat, whole grains, dry fruits etc.

Protein to be Consumed by Athletes

Depending on an athlete’s goals and training status, he can need anywhere from half to 1 gram of protein per pound of his body weight. A sports dietitian is the best person to help you determine the right amount of protein your athlete would require. An athlete’s daily protein requirement can be fulfilled using a source of lean protein such as butter lentils, chicken eggs, milk, yoghurts, fish etc.

A healthy diet lowers the risk of injuries in Young Athletes.

Eating a healthy diet for ensures that an athlete gets the proper amount of Nutrition that his body requires to produce energy during intense training hours.

The nutrition for young athletes diet also creates new muscle tissues, enzymes and other structures involved in energy metabolism. More proper nutrition also helps repair the damage and injuries on an athlete’s body and helps the body’s muscles, bones, joints, and tendons to function optimally.

Foods that athletes should compulsorily consume there are certain foods that athletes must consume to retain good health and perform better.

Whole Grains and other Complex Carbohydrates:

It includes oats, brown rice,  whole wheat bread,

  • Fruits: 2 to 4 times a day
  • Vegetables: 3 to 5 servings a day
  • Lean Proteins: Like chicken, fish, eggs,  tofu, beans, lentils, milk, yogurt, etc.
  • Healthy Fats: nuts, seeds, butter, avocado, olive oil
nutrition for young athletes

Drink up

Drinking plenty of fluids is an essential part of an athlete’s life to prevent dehydration which can reduce strength and energy coordination and lead to illness. Even mild dehydration has been shown to reduce the performance of athletes. As an athlete, your child cannot rely on thirst to tell him to drink the water. Your young athlete must drink plenty of liquids throughout the day.  drinking water before physical activity and every 15 to 20  minutes is necessary. You can find plenty of sports drinks in the market, but plain water is usually enough to keep your kid hydrated. However, you should avoid giving sugary drinks to your child, which can upset his stomach.

Game Day

Kids should eat adeughoutquately on game day. The meal can be different from the meal your child has consumed thro the training period. However, you need to remember a few things for a meal before a match.

  • Athletes should have a meal 3 to 4 hours before the start of the event. The meal should have some amount of protein and carbs. However, you must keep low-fat levels in the diet.  Fats require more amount to digest and thus may create unpleasant feelings.
  • If your kid eats a meal only 3 hours before the start of the game, you must serve them a lighter and easy-to-digest meal.
  • Once the training is complete according to experts’ recommendation, your child must eat food within This helps the body in rebuilding its muscles and restore energy and fluids.

Final Words

The young athlete requires a mixed diet with fluids, proteins, minerals, and Vitamins to restore the energy levels in the body and prepare the body for the following sessions of training and game events. You can practice all the nutritional tips mentioned above from time to time to fulfil your nutrition requirements.  However, The Best nutrition for young athletes can be given only by specialist nutritionists who can analyse the needs of the athlete’s children and accordingly set the diet plan for them.

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