1-2 Hours Before Game Time/Between Events “Starch-based meals should be the focus, says Turner. by Jeff Natt . Fast foods from places like McDonalds are very high in calories, trans fats, salt and sugar. Many sports drinks contain large quantities of sugar – in some cases, as much as 18 percent and salt. Consuming carbohydrate at least an hour before kick off allows any hormonal imbalance to return to normal. Maybe some light pasta or salad with some bread. For some other smoothie ideas click here. Eat at least one good source of omega-3 fats each day. 4. Two bananas, two heaping tablespoons of peanut butter, two table spoons of    chocolate chips (preferable dark chocolate), milk (or almond or soy milk). A child’s body will be rebuilding muscle tissue and replenishing energy stores and fluids for up to 24 hours after the competition. On hot days, try frozen grapes. If you don’t make it yourself, look into Annie’s brand or Whole Foods 365 brand or other healthier alternatives; Pasta with tomato sauce with grated cheese on top, Bean burritos with cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes, Rice and beans with grated cheese and sliced avocados (for a fruit, avocados are high in protein), High protein items such as tuna fish, salmon, sardines, chicken (grilled or baked, not fried), egg products (egg salad, hard boiled egg), Nori (square seaweed used in sushi) rollups with brown rice and vegetables, Wraps with vegetables and chicken or salmon or tuna. Note on milk:  For children who are not lactose-intolerant or allergic to dairy products, milk is one-stop shopping for nutrition. It seems easy, but athletes often forget to steer clear of any high-fat foods. Morning Competition: If you have a morning event, your dinner the night before becomes your most important meal! Stock your kitchen with good-quality tomato sauce, balsamic vinegar, fresh and dried herbs, dried cherries or cranberries, freshly grated Parmesan cheese, and a variety of unsalted nuts (such as walnuts, almonds, and pistachios). Other energy bar suggestions click here. “Foods like lower fiber rice, pasta, and breads are good options.” Because unused calories eventually convert to fat, choose your meal carefully. Peanut butter … This includes breakfast on game day. If your child has an early morning game or practice, here's some advice on what and when she should eat for peak athletic performance. These can accompany a pasta lunch before an afternoon game or an oatmeal and raisins breakfast, according to Averbuch and Clark. Make sure that your child is drinking water throughout the day and leading up to the game or practice. You will want to eat a … Make this mostly carbohydrates with a little protein and make sure it’s a familiar food that you know you digest well. Good Foods to Eat Before Football Practice. Drink lots of liquid and make sure that you have a lot of energizing, healthy foods. What to eat before soccer practice!? If kids eat less than 3 hours before game or practice, serve a lighter meal or snack that includes easy-to-digest carbohydrate-containing foods, such as fruit, fruit or vegetable juice, crackers, or bread. When i was training with my club team in college I remember trying to find the balance of what I could eat without feeling like I was going to throw up by the end of practice. Breakfast before a soccer game should be at least two hours prior. © 2019 www.azcentral.com. Check your local vitamin shop or supermarket and compare products and prices. Sports drinks are designed to provide energy and replace electrolytes — such as sodium and potassium — that athletes lose in sweat. SoccerXpert: Why should soccer players eat foods that are high in carbohydrates? Instead, build a healthy plate with equal servings of protein, whole grains, and vegetables. Here are a couple of suggestions of complete liquid and powder vitamin and mineral supplements:  1) Nature’s Way Alive! Fatty fish, walnuts, and canola oil all provide omega-3 fatty acids. WHAT TO EAT & DRINK BEFORE A GAME . 5. Don't overdo it and consume too many carbohydrates before playing sport, as this will direct blood to your digestive system instead of your muscles when you become active. Easy-to-chew dates provide quickly digestible simple carbohydrates. Make sure your Milk is also rich in nutrients such as calcium, phosphorus and vitamin D. Sports drinks – Limit sports drinks like Gatorade to after games. Berries are cancer-fighting, apples provide fiber, oranges and mangos offer vitamin C, and so on. Processed meats  (including bacon, sausage, hot dogs, sandwich meat, packaged ham, pepperoni, salami and virtually all red meat used in frozen prepared meals) – Numerous scientific studies have pointed to processed meats containing many chemicals additives that are known to greatly increase the risk of various cancers including colorectal cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, leukemia, brain tumors, pancreatic cancer and many more. Read more about fats and health, or try these recipes that use healthy fats. The added fruit will give you that quick jolt of energy you need to get your engine started. If you anticipate burning 600 calories, then eat 300 calories at the pre-game meal. Take out, unwrap and slice into pieces. Choose low-fat milk, and savor full-fat cheeses in small amounts. As any parent knows, it can be challenging to get kids to eat healthy snacks. 3-4 Hours Before the Game What to Eat for Energy Before a Football Game, Privacy Notice/Your California Privacy Rights. from Harvard School of Public Health: http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/. To properly fuel the body, a student-ath - lete’s day should focus on six fueling times: • Snack before morning training: Slice of wheat bread and peanut butter. If one already has a low-fat diet and lack of exercise and weight gain is not an issue, then whole milk should not be a problem if consumed in moderation. Soccer requires speed, endurance, a consistent energy supply and focus. So if one is not getting enough exercise and is not burning off all the calories consumed from a daily diet, weight gain occurs. 1. The answer to the question “What should you eat?” is actually pretty simple. Whole milk contains about 4% saturated fat, while low-fat milk contains 2% fat and skim milk 0%. A player must eat before and after practice to maintain energy levels, weight and muscle mass. After the game or event, experts recommend eating carbs (fruit, pretzels, a sports drink, milk, chocolate milk, etc.) One last piece of advice – Getting a good night’s rest (at least eight hours) is just as important as eating right. This allows for a relatively slow release of glucose into the blood and avoids the insulin surge. When you shop, select produce that looks good, or what’s on sale. I would usually eat 30 to 45 minutes before to let things settle. Ideal for a morning snack before an afternoon competition, oatmeal is well-tolerated and provides long-lasting energy. Not all meals are created … Then drink another glass about a half and hour to an hour before your event as well. Prepare a pregame snack of carbohydrates, such as a bagel with peanut butter, oatmeal, a banana, yogurt or similar food. Eating breakfast within an hour of waking up is essential for energy balance, recovery and weight maintenance. Fried and breaded foods – A leading cause of obesity in this country. Excellent ball-handling skills and an enjoyment of running help players perform at their best, and so does proper nutrition. To find local growers, farmer’s markets, and CSAs in your area, visit Local Harvest. Read about whole grains and health or try these whole grain recipes. Learn what chefs have known for a long time: A small amount of a high-quality ingredient goes a long way toward boosting flavor. Make breakfast the night before. Mashed avocado, rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, makes a fabulous topping for sandwiches. Here’s a suggestion if you have a food processor: Any combination of the following – 1/4 cup of dried pitted figs, 1/4 cup dried pitted dates, 1/4 cup of dried cranberries, 1/4 cup dried prunes, 1/4 cup dried apricots, 1/4 cup of raisins; two heaping table spoons of natural peanut butter or a 1/2 cup of roasted peanuts; any combination of the following – 1/4 cup of  sunflower seeds, 1/4 cup of pistachios, 1/4 cup of pumpkin seeds, 1/4 cup almonds; 1/2 cup of granola of your choice; 1/4 cup of chocolate chips; 1/4 cup of dried unsweetened coconut. Avoid snacking too late. Bedtime snack 2. But you wouldn’t know that from news reports on diet and nutrition studies, whose sole purpose seems to be to confuse people on a daily basis. This includes focusing on what to eat before a soccer game. Players on a competitive / traveling youth soccer team might need to get up at 5:00 AM or 6:00 AM to get to an 8:00 AM tournament. Soccer players sometimes have to train or compete early in the morning. Sweet vegetables: Naturally sweet vegetables add healthy sweetness to your meals and reduce your cravings for other sweets. If you are a recreational soccer player, you might arrive at a game after eating a large meal and find you're too full to run well during a 90-minute outdoor contest or a 48-minute indoor one. If you’re in any doubt, it makes sense to eat earlier rather than later . 0 0. A granola bar or half a sandwich can also work. Instead of fried chicken or fish, opt for grilled or non-breaded baked. Too much salt can eventually lead to high blood pressure. Without adequate, balanced nutrition, you won’t have enough energy to play your best. You should avoid foods and drinks with lots of sugar (yes, including coca-cola), since they create blood sugar pikes. Worked for me I guess. They should come to the table hungry (after main meals, snacking is encouraged.) I used to eat bread alot before basketball practices. The key to game-day nutrition is eating substantial yet light meals. Many top athletes consider "carb loading" an essential pregame practice. “Too much of the sweet stuff can lead to lethargy due to blood sugar fluctuations, so avoid sports drinks until immediately before the game, too.”. Whenever a whole teams knows these soccer player eating tips before and after games it helps with performance. A general rule to consumption is to eat between 20 to 40 grams of carbohydrates one to two hours before … Whole milk also contains more calories than low-fat or skim milk. So, if your glycogen storages are full the morning of the game, then that is perfect. Your best bet is to eat a pre-game snack about half an hour before you step onto the court or field to top off your energy stores, helping you power past opponents in the closing minutes. Watermelon dipped in salt provides an energy boost, rehydrates and replaces electrolytes at the same time. Fruit: A wide variety of fruit is also vital to a healthy diet. A football player doing two practices a day might need as many as 10,000 calories in one day. There has been a lot of discussion about whether one should avoid whole milk. Here’s 5 Quick Tips on Stocking a Healthy Kitchen, from the Harvard School of Public Health: http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/recipes/. Be adventurous with your greens and branch out beyond bright and dark green lettuce—kale, mustard greens, broccoli, Chinese cabbage are just a few of the options. This is good for you because Greek yogurt (try to avoid fruit flavored yogurt unless there is no sugar added) and milk provide lots of protein to repair your muscles after a strenuous workout. You also might rush to the game without having eaten all day. Other essentials. List of Common Fast-Acting Carbohydrates for Post-Workout. Try these healthy recipes for nuts and tofu, fish and chicken. So think about your practice schedule and your eating for the days leading up to game day to give you an idea of what your carb intake should look like. Don’t forget to shop fresh and local whenever possible. Mac and Cheese  Try to avoid Kraft and other more commercial brands as they contains too much salt and a lot of unnecessary chemical additives, preservatives, food colors, flavor enhancers, etc. To get the most out of the recipes you prepare, keep your kitchen stocked with these healthy ingredients: 1. Make sure 50-60% of your calories come from carbohydrates. Play around until you find the combination that you like. You can download the file here: Nutritional Recommendations For Soccer Players. Most important of all is keeping calories in check by keeping the portions in check, so you can avoid weight gain, which makes exercise a key partner to a healthy diet. Healthy eating begins in the kitchen, whether it’s in a home, restaurant, dining hall, or other venue. Fresh fruit e.g., apples, pears, strawberries, mangos, etc. Keep on hand garlic, onions, dark salad greens like spinach and romaine, carrots, and apples. The rule of thumb is to eat half of the calories that you expect to burn during the game. It’s important to drink afterwards to restore fluid lost through sweat. Lv 4. Excessive amounts of sugar (and carbohydrates which break down into sugar) in addition to weight gain is a leading cause of diabetes and tooth decay. Morning … Avoid fiber; in addition to robbing your body of the need for carbs, it can cause digestive distress -- and that's the last thing you need when it's time for the game-winning penalty kick. They are high in trans and saturated fats, which are linked to cardiovascular disease. Now, every last aspect of a professional soccer player’s life is taken care of to give the team the best possible chance of success. Athletes like Cristiano Ronaldo eat a breakfast that is rich in complex carbohydrates and a moderate amount of protein such as fruit, whole-grain cereals, eggs or milk. Coconut water replaces electrolytes lost during sweaty matches; potassium-, vitamin C- and prebiotics-packed bananas help, too. Liquid meal replacements -- such as breakfast shakes -- also help, provided they are high in carbs and low in filling, tough-to-digest proteins and fats. What soccer players eat for breakfast For breakfast you can eat oatmeal, egg white, boiled eggs, omelette, bread, grain cereal [low sugar], avocado, cottage cheese, protein shake, banana, strawberries, blueberries and blackberries . So sound advice would be to reduce all foods that are high in saturated fat such as butter, cheese, ice cream, eggs, fried foods and high fat red meat. Use liquid vegetable oils whenever possible for sautéing vegetables, stir-frying fish or chicken, and as the base of salad dressings. Eat a great dinner the night before. Eating between four and two hours beforehand allows the body enough time to digest the food and store the calories for later use. Fats and oils. Games lasting 90 minutes or longer could deplete glycogen (sugar) stores, so if your morning match turns into an all-day tournament, eat plenty of smart carbs. Eat a snack about an hour before the opening whistle. While you can’t fix yourself scrambled eggs ahead of time, you can hard-boil eggs or, at the very least, have all the ingredients organized and ready to go. You can brown the beef or chicken ahead of time and just assemble the night you need to eat. 3-4 hours before a game eat a nutritionally balanced meal. ), Nuts, dried fruit, energy bars, trail mix, Bagels with cream cheese or other cheese or peanut butter, Fresh or steamed vegetables (like carrots, broccoli, celery) with hummus or peanut butter dip, Plenty of fluids – 2-3 bottles of water during a game. Game-Day. Suggestions: If your child has a game in the morning it is probably best to steer away from foods high in fiber such as pancakes and waffles as these can sit in the stomach and take a long time to digest and slow them down during game time. Fatty foods. within 30 minutes after intense activity and again 2 hours later. Two days before a game, you should really load up on carbs that will keep you with enough energy for the next game. There’s a recommended period of 2 to 4 hours between small meals/snacks, which could result in around 6 meals per day. Read more about omega-3 fatty acids and why they are so important to good health. A meal 3-4 hours before a game or practice should be rich in complex carbohydrates and a moderate amount of protein but be low in fat and excessive fiber because fat and fiber takes longer to digest, which can cause an upset stomach and slow your child down. You might have your own routine established and if so, you shouldn’t suddenly change it. 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