MZWAKHE MPOFU

Athletes may need to make some adjustments in terms of their diet to ensure peak performance on the field, however it is important to guard against dietary restrictions that may have dire consequences to the athlete. Proper guidance is needed when deciding to stick to a sportsperson diet.

Diet is a vital aspect in terms of high performance and general health. Good nutrition contributes to a healthy and strong body, ensuring that performance on the field is not compromised. It is important to choose food that suits you and your lifestyle. For instance, less active people may need to eat less to maintain their health. This is different when it comes to athletes who are almost always active and may need to eat much more. This should be done under the right supervision or and proper knowledge about the sportsperson diet.

As an athlete it is always good to start with a good breakfast as it provides the body with the right amount of carbohydrates and protein to start the day on a high note. A good breakfast can consist of oatmeal or a bowl of low fat yoghurt with fresh fruit. Drink a cup of tea or a glass of fruit juice with breakfast for hydration and sugar. Varied sources also agree that a good lunch may consist of the correct carbohydrates and proteins that may include soup or salad with chicken. Fish, eggs or 2-3 wholemeal sandwiches with egg will provide the necessary protein required, a healthy fruit drink can also be added. For dinner, a large variety of meals every week helps to avoid boredom and temptation for unhealthy foods. Dinner may include fish, eggs, chicken, rice, pasta and potato; however, athletes are not restricted to this particular diet, they can be flexible.

It is important as an athlete to stick to a certain diet to ensure outstanding performance on the field, however most athletes have testified that it is a difficult job as it requires sacrifice and commitment but such commitments bring about positive results. These dietary decisions may sometimes require coaching as some athletes may give up and end up compromising their performance.

In some instances, some athletes may be required to lose some weight and this will mean cutting down on certain foods or changing lifestyles. The aim is to ensure that they perform at their best in the field. The problem comes when athletes may take extreme measures to attain the required body without any guidance and end up compromising their health and possibly developing chronic illnesses.

Seek proper knowledge and proper coaching before deciding to change your diet to avoid adverse health results.

 

 Illustration: Tshepang Rhilampfu

 

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