In the diet of athletes, there is much more than the consumption of carbohydrates or the consumption of sports drinks. The good news is that eating at maximum performance doesn’t mean you have to follow a special diet or take supplements. It is just about getting the right foods and the right amounts into your diet to stay healthy and fit.
Adolescent athletes at BritainReviews said they had different nutritional needs than other teenagers. Because they train much longer than their less active counterparts, they often need extra calories for fuel to exercise and continue to grow. Depending on their level of activity, a teenage athlete may need an intake of 2,000 to 5,000 total calories per day to meet their energy needs.
Athletes and diet
Because athletic teens need more fuel than average teens, dieting is often not a good idea. Athletes who practice low-weight sports, such as some forms of wrestling, swimming, dancing, or gymnastics, may feel pressured to lose weight but should be aware of the negative effects mentioned. You should always choose healthy food brands when an athlete wants to start a diet.
Eat a wide variety of foods
You may have heard the phrase “load of carbs” before games. But if a person wants to increase their long-term athletic performance, it is a bad idea to focus exclusively on one type of food.
Carbohydrates are an important fuel, but they are just one of the many types of food an athlete needs. Athletes also need to take vitamins, minerals, proteins and fats to be in top shape.
Two fundamental elements
- vitamins for muscles
Calcium helps build strong bones on which athletes depend, and iron is responsible for delivering oxygen to muscles. Most teens don’t get enough of these two minerals; This is especially true for teens who play sports, as their needs for these minerals may be even greater than for other teens.
Energy bars and protein are not very good for athletes, but they are not very harmful either. However, energy drinks contain a large amount of caffeine, so they should not be taken before exercise.
Other types of supplements can be harmful.
Anabolic steroids can significantly alter the hormone levels of those taking them, causing side effects such as reduced testicular size and baldness in boys or the appearance of facial hair in girls. Steroids can also lead to mental health problems, such as depression and emotional ups and downs.
Some supplements contain testosterone-related hormones, such as dehydroepiandrosterone (or DHEA). These supplements may have side effects similar to those of anabolic steroids. Other sports supplements (such as creatine, for example) have not yet been tested in people under the age of 18, so the risks they pose to the adolescent population are unknown.
If we talk about dehydration, we must say that water is just as important for an athlete to perform as well as diet. When a person sweats while exercising, it is easy to become excessively hot, have a headache and feel exhausted, especially in hot and/or humid climates. Even mild dehydration can hurt an athlete’s physical and mental performance.