Right nutrition for growing children is very important, and if your child is playing competitive sports, it become even more critical.
Their growth, performance and stamina, all are impacted by what they eat, when they eat and how much.
Our Sports Nutritionist Ms Prtii took many of the most common queries and shared her insights on the same. We are providing them below for your reference.
One must always remember that these are very general recommendations, and we must consult a specialist before making any major changes to our lifestyle or diet.
- What a balanced meal looks like?
Balanced Meals are the main pillars of kid’s nutrition. These should include wide variety of whole-grains (carbohydrates), pulses, legumes or lean meat (proteins), vegetables (particularly leafy green varieties) and low-fat dairy products.
- How many meals a day is a sports kid required?
For an increased metabolism, we recommend 3 Major meals – Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner, and healthy snacks in between the meals.
- What should be the ideal gap b/w meals for sports kids?
Between a meal and a snack or a snack and a meal, the gap would not be more than two hours. Don’t focus on eating too much at one time, rater small frequent meals and snack combination works well.
- Is it important to have carbs in every meal?
The 3 major meals – breakfast, lunch and dinner must include healthy carbohydrates. This ensures good source of energy and increased immunity. You may choose to add millets instead of Wheat in your meals for a healthier carb/nutrition equation.
Motherkart has a great millet flour range that you can use - check them out here.
- Does vegetarian and non-vegetarian sports kid protein consumption is same or do they need to take some supplements to fulfil the gap?
Vegetarian sources of protein have lower absorption than Non-Vegetarian sources, thus for vegetarians increasing the overall protein intake by just 10% can make it equal to non-vegetarians. Taking Protein Supplement is not dependent on your choice of being Vegetarian or not, but individual body requirement and if that’s being met through diet or not.
- Are Nutritional requirements sports specific?
The base Nutritional diet remains same across different sports, but overall nutritional planning should take the nature of sports into consideration. It is important to understand calories expense, muscle strength, agility etc. needs, specific to make sports specific diet plan.
- Does Nutrition differs for Boys and Girls who are into sports?
The Nutritional needs differ for both boys and Girls specifically post attaining puberty and should be taken into consideration while planning the overall diet.
- How can we improve the stamina of the kids playing sports?
Stamina can be improved by constantly focusing on right and balanced nutrition along with regular physical training. In terms of diet, what you eat before, during and post workout are very significant in working towards better stamina. Include lots of green leafy vegetables, whole grains and food with healthy fatty acids (rich in omega 3)
- What are the alternatives to add in Milk instead of commonly marketed protein drinks
We can make much healthier and tasty protein drinks for kids at home using ingredients like finger millet, fox nuts, Puffed rice, dry fruits etc. a lot of such healthy alternatives are even available on our website.
- Are supplements necessary for kids who are into sports?
Healthy Nutritional Supplements help in meeting the daily nutritional requirements of kids in sports with ease. But there is no one size that fits all. It is essential to understand kid’s specific requirement and include them only after proper guidance
We have a good range of healthy supplements, and you may take a look at the Meneki site