| Laura Jones
Many parents wonder what to feed our young athletes after practices or game time. Extra calories are being burned and should young athletes have a special diet?
The short answer is this… kids should have a healthy balanced diet for life and sport’s life. Good nutrition will carry them through life and sports and give them the energy they need to compete. They will have higher requirements, however! Practices and games or multiple games in one day will increase their caloric intake which happens naturally. No need for calorie counting!
Experts recommend eating carbs such as fruit, pretzels, or sports drinks within 30 mins after training and again 2 hrs later. The body will rebuild muscle and replenish fluid levels up to 24hrs after a workout. The post practice meal should be balanced with a carb, protein, and fat.
- Make sure your child is properly hydrated after the game or practice.
- Hydrate with water for best hydration but if child does not like to drink water, sports drinks are a second option, but not the healthiest. They do replace the electrolytes lost in their sweat.
- Vitamins and Minerals: Calcium and iron are two minerals that are important to athletes. Calcium is important to have strong bones to prevent stress fractures or breaking. Foods to add calcium to the diet include: milk, yogurt, cheese, and leafy green vegetables.
- Iron helps carry oxygen to the tissues where needed for those tough workouts! Foods with iron include: lean meat, chicken, tuna, salmon, eggs, leafy green vegetables and whole grains.
- After practice carry snacks in the car so your athlete is not starving till you get home for dinner. This will elevate fast food runs on the way home as well. Snack suggestions include: pretzels, raisins, crackers, string cheese, vegetables or fruit.
Here is a quick, nutritional meal idea in case you didn’t use your crockpot that day!
15 Minute Honey Garlic Chicken
Have a great weekend everyone!
Founder of The Hockey Mommy
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Note: All information on The Hockey Mommy is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnosis, and treatment, please consult your doctor.
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