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Nutrition and High School Athletes

July 13, 2017

 

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Even though it is summer break, practices for high school athletes have been in full swing since June. Unfortunately, I see many athletes who do not consume enough food to fuel their bodies for the morning and afternoon practices that they participate in. It takes parents, coaches, athletes and nutrition professionals to find a healthy balance between the energy requirements to fuel practice demands and the energy requirements for the athlete to achieve their goal. 

 

In the same way that all sports do not practice in similarly, nutrition cannot be the same for these athletes. We would not dream of putting our football players through a cross country running practice or vice versa. Comparably, volleyball players require different training modalities than soccer players. Their nutrition requirements should be tailored to their specific activity needs as well.

 

Parents:

 

Don’t be afraid to advocate for your child! Ask them if their coaches have told them what they should eat and then do some research or work with a nutrition professional to determine what your child needs. If their coaches haven’t told them anything regarding nutrition, get some help! 

 

High school athletes have unique needs as their bodies are growing, which makes their metabolisms generally higher to begin with. I’m sure you’ve noticed how your child is always hungry! Their metabolisms are burning at a high rate and then they’ve usually added not one, but two physically demanding practices a day, most days of the week on top of that! Of course they are hungry! The challenge is usually getting something nutritious in their growing athletic bodies! Set them up for success by getting them started eating the correct amount of calori