Palmer: Sports nutrition for young athletes | Magic Valley Lifestyles

September is right here, and with it comes busy nights and weekends filled with soccer practices, soccer video games and different actions that hold youngsters (and fogeys) busy and lively. Young athletes have to gasoline their our bodies with the right nutrition to allow them to develop, play and recuperate in the easiest approach.

Proper nutrition ought to begin as quickly because the day begins. Eating breakfast supplies the important vitamins wanted to take care of power and improve focus. It may also be a good time for a household to take a seat down and eat collectively, particularly if busy sports activities schedules make household dinners almost unimaginable.

A healthy breakfast ought to provide a stability of carbohydrate, protein and fats. While a fast bowl of cereal might appear to be a good suggestion through the morning rush, a easy meal of scrambled eggs with cheese, entire wheat toast with peanut butter, or a cup of yogurt topped with fruit will hold youngsters feeling full and energized for longer.

Most young athletes are achieved consuming lunch by round 12:30 p.m., which suggests a healthy pre-practice snack is necessary to keep away from the afternoon power crash. Hummus and greens, apples and peanut butter, string cheese and entire grain crackers or a healthy fruit smoothie are all scrumptious, nutrient dense snacks that may assist youngsters preform their greatest.

Older youngsters could also be inclined to attempt dietary dietary supplements as a approach to increase protein consumption and construct muscle. Instead, encourage teenagers to first flip to meals wealthy in protein comparable to peanut and almond butters, eggs, lean hen and turkey, and low-fat dairy like milk, cheese and yogurt. These meals will present not solely the protein they should strengthen muscle tissues, however different nutritional vitamins and minerals that improve their general health.

Post-work out meals and snacks are additionally necessary. A mixture of protein and carbohydrate will assist replenish depleted muscle tissue and power shops, so attempt issues like low-fat chocolate milk or a peanut butter sandwich inside 30 minutes of ending the exercise.

Keeping youngsters hydrated is as necessary as holding them fed. Water is the only option for adults and youngsters alike, so make certain your athlete is provided with a full water bottle as they head out the door. Electrolyte replacements, corresponding to a sports activities drink, aren’t wanted until your youngster is sweating closely and exercising for longer than one hour at a time. Stick with water as their main beverage all through the day and through bodily exercise.

Taryn Palmer is a registered dietitian for the Magic Valley YMCA.


• 1 cup (three.5 ounces) old style oats

• 1/three cup (1.25 ounces) floor flaxseed meal

• 2/three to 1 cup (6-9 ounces) nut butter (see observe)

• 1/four cup (three ounces) honey

• Dash of vanilla extract

• Pinch of salt (extra to style, if wanted)

• Add-ins: mini chocolate chips, shredded coconut, chopped nuts, dried fruit, chia seeds, and so forth.

1. In a food processor, add the oats and course of till coarsely chopped. If you don’t have a food processor, coarsely chop the oats in a blender and add to a bowl.

2. Add the flaxseed meal, nut butter, honey, vanilla and salt. Process/combine till the combination comes collectively right into a gentle however not overly sticky ball.

three. If the combination is overly dry, add nut butter a tablespoon at a time and course of/combine till the consistency is delicate however not overly sticky or crumbly.

four. Remove the blade from the food processor, if utilizing. Add any add-in components and blend together with your palms till evenly mixed.

5. Roll the dough into small balls (I exploit my small cookie scoop – #60) and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet or tray. Refrigerate till agency sufficient to stack in a lidded container or in a bag. The power bites may be frozen for a number of months or refrigerated for every week or so.

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