Athletes should pay attention to the meals that they eat. It is essential to know that whatever you consume will affect the body, including the level of endurance and energy levels, whether you are a professional or beginner athlete, for the best performance, you must eat a well-balanced diet.
A balanced diet must comprise of all the essential nutrients required by the body. One of the thing that is challenging to most athletes is the fact that the bodies are very delicate. When there is no supply of the right nutrients in the body, athletes will not perform well on the tracks. Bearing this fact in mind, below are some of the crucial nutrients that must be included in the athletes’ meals.
Carbs are essential in supplying the body with the needed power to work muscles. Consuming carbs after, during, and before exercising is important. This will aid in maintaining and boosting the energy levels, delaying fatigue, and increasing the recovery time. If you take part in intense training, these carbohydrates meals must be above 50 percent of the entire energy intake.
This is another superb energy source required by athletes. Besides energy, the essential fats give the body important fat-soluble vitamins and fatty acids. You must nonetheless bear in mind that this fat intake must be limited. Also, low-fat meals should be consumed by beginners and professional athletes. Natural fats are the best option for athletes, and they can be found in seeds, nuts, canola, avocados, and olive oils.
Proteins are also very crucial in the body, and they serve as the building blocks for muscles and tissues in the human body. For athletes, it is also recommended that they consume protein supplements as well. However, natural protein sources are the best and include meats, legumes, and dairy products.
Minerals and Vitamins
These groups of nutrients aid in making the body active physically. They help in the contraction and relaxation of muscles as well as in triggering the body to use the energy absorbed from carbs, proteins, and fats. Make sure that the vitamin and mineral intake is appropriately balanced. Selected seeds, vegetables, and fruits are a superb source of vitamins and minerals.
Iron is crucial since it aids in supplying oxygen to the different parts of the body. You may be wondering how this happens. Most of the iron present in the body is found in hemoglobin that moves oxygen from the lungs to the body tissues. Thus, if the iron intake levels are high, the levels of oxygen will be boosted as well.
Iron can be obtained from plant foods and animal foods. The iron that is found in animals is known as Haem iron, and they are absorbed fast in the body. However, the plant-based iron is called non-haem iron and is typically absorbed poorly by the body. Luckily, the absorption process of the plant-based iron can be boosted through adding foods high in vitamin C like fruits, citrus juices, and kiwi fruits. The female athletes must also increase their intake of iron since most of it is lost monthly while menstruating.