Just as a vehicle would work better if fueled well, similarly it’s important for children into sports to fuel themselves well to be on top of their game. However, this can be very challenging for parents, particularly if they are participating in multiple events over the day, or over consecutive days or in case they are picky eaters. Without the right nutrition, active children will not only get tired and fatigued but this will also affect their overall performance. Thus, here are some tips to ensure that your child is fueled well:
- Do not skip Breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. This becomes even more important if they are involved in sports. Skipping breakfast can affect their energy and attention span during the match or training. However, due to feasibility and convenience, it is important to note to avoid a bowl of sugary cereal, jam or butter for breakfast. Some easy and nutritious breakfast options are sandwiches (egg/chicken), fruit smoothies (using curd), chapatis and cutlets.
It is well known that kids have a more difficult time regulating body temperature, especially in extreme environments like a hot and humid summer day. Therefore, they should aim to drink as much fluid as they lose in body weight during an exercise session or match. Even a 1% decrease of body weight caused due to sweating can affect endurance. So, it’s important to encourage kids to drink as much as water as possible and let thirst be their guide. Dehydration can lead to many ill-effects such as brain fog, headache and giddiness that can affect performance overall. Make sure to carry a bottle of water during the match with some natural infusers such as pomegranate, chopped apple slices or chia seeds as this will help in boosting performance.
- Snacking right
Snacking on the unhealthy options such as chips, biscuits and chocolates will lead to unwanted calories. Snack on healthy options such as homemade laddoos, sweet potato, homemade cheese crackers, fresh fruits and homemade chaats such as kala chana chaat and peanut chaat,