All athletes, even those on Sunday, must know and respect certain main principles of food to maintain their shape and improve their performance.
Competition or not, sports practice requires that you provide your body with sufficient food from an energy point of view but also complete from a nutritional point of view. Therefore, the athlete’s plate must provide the body with proteins, lipids and carbohydrates in good proportions, as well as intakes of vitamins, minerals and fibres satisfying daily needs.
Even if you’re not a high-level athlete, here are some simple principles to implement on your plate, common mistakes that are easy to avoid, and the little extra thing that will make all the difference in your fitness level: nuts and dried fruits!
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a crucial aspect of being in good shape. For athletes, their nutritional balance plays a significant role in their overall physical performance. This balance is dependent on various factors such as their gender, age, and the intensity of their practice. For top athletes who want to achieve optimal performance, it is highly recommended to seek the guidance of a sports nutritionist who can provide tailored advice and support. However, for anyone looking to maintain a healthy nutritional balance, it is essential to keep in mind that variety is key. Incorporating a diverse range of food groups into your diet can ensure that you are getting all the necessary nutrients to support your physical well-being.
- Eat five fruits and vegetables a day.
- Breakfast is essential. Physical practice on an empty stomach puts the body in a weak position. It’s counterproductive and a source of fatigue.
- If the workout is scheduled for early in the morning, have a healthy snack for breakfast. Dried fruits (oleaginous and dehydrated fruits) are ideal for providing an energy relay to the body before training.
- The snack is as important as the breakfast.
- Each meal must provide starches (cereal products, potatoes, pulses).
- Sweet products should be consumed in moderation and preferably reserved for after exercise (cereal bars, dried fruit).
- Even if you exercise to lose weight, do not neglect the importance of fats and favour those of vegetable origin.
- Hydrate before, during and after exercise without waiting to feel thirsty.
When it comes to sports nutrition, there are many misconceptions. Dietary errors that not only affect performance but also, above all, have health consequences.
Skipping the meal before the session makes you more efficient: FALSE!
It is important to note that skipping a meal can have detrimental effects on the body, as it puts it in a state of energy deficit and distress. This is especially true prior to physical exertion, even if it is moderate in nature. Furthermore, engaging in exercise on an empty stomach can lead to tissue acidification, which can cause a range of inflammatory phenomena and other negative health outcomes. As such, consuming a balanced meal before engaging in any physical activity is recommended to optimize performance and minimize the risk of health complications.
Increase protein intake to increase muscle mass: FALSE!
Indeed, proteins play a vital part in the makeup of muscle fibres. However, it’s essential to keep in mind that an excess of protein can lead to dangerous imbalances within the body. While proteins have a structural function, they don’t supply energy to the body. Moreover, when proteins are broken down in the intestine, they produce toxic compounds such as ammonia, uric acid, and urea. When these compounds accumulate in the body, it can lead to severe health issues, including kidney pathologies. Therefore, it’s crucial to maintain a balanced and healthy diet that doesn’t overemphasize protein intake.
Use vitamin food supplements to boost your form: FALSE!
The use of vitamin nutritional complexes is never trivial. To avoid any risk of essential micronutrient deficiency, prefer the consumption of natural and healthy foods recognized for their nutritional richness. Nuts, for example!
When it comes to nutrition, numerous topics can be hotly debated. However, there are a few foods that nutritionists universally agree on, and one of them is nuts. Nuts are widely recognized as a positive addition to any diet, especially for those who are engaged in sports and physical activities.
During physical exercise, the body has an increased need for certain nutrients, such as iron, magnesium, and calcium. Fortunately, nuts like almonds, hazelnuts, pistachios, and cashews are an excellent source of these essential minerals and can help meet these increased needs.
In addition to their mineral content, nuts are also a great source of healthy fats. Athletes and people who are looking to lose weight make the mistake of eliminating fats from their diet. However, it is important to remember that the human body requires healthy fats to function correctly, particularly to support the cardiovascular system. Nuts are an excellent source of unsaturated vegetable fats, which are beneficial to overall health and can help regulate cholesterol levels.
Overall, incorporating nuts into your diet is an excellent way to support your physical health, particularly if you are engaged in regular exercise or leading an active lifestyle. They provide essential nutrients and healthy fats that your body needs to perform at its best.
Finally, dried fruits also include raisins, dried figs, or even goji berries, which represent an immediate source of energy thanks to their natural carbohydrates. It is a healthy fuel for the athlete. Before the session, the dried fruits allow the athlete to integrate enough energy to better spend themselves throughout the effort. After the session, they are perfect for physical recovery.
To conclude, you should know that nuts and dried fruits are ideal for athletes. This makes it possible to build up “sustainable” energy reserves and to provide fast sugars that are immediately available.
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