Nutrition for Your Growing Athlete

All young athletes need good nutrition to compete.

All young athletes need good nutrition to compete.

If your son or daughter is participating in a sport, consider using this diet and nutrition information from Iowa State University. Working with a nutritionist, swim coaches there created basic guidelines to help young athletes not only have good nutrition to prepare their bodies for events, but also to sustain health throughout training. The body cannot compete when depleted of nutrients.

If your child is going to swim or wrestle or run in a MORNING EVENT, follow this plan:

DINNER the night before: 2 cups spaghetti, 1 cup pasta sauce, 1 plain dinner roll, 1 cup mixed greens, ½ cup cooked broccoli.  Totals: 115 grams carbohydrate; 575 kcal

SNACK: 1 cup OJ, 1 banana(small), 1 granola bar.  Totals: 60 grams carbohydrate; 240 kcal

LIGHT BREAKFAST: 1 1/2 cup cheerios, 1 cup skim milk, 1 banana. Totals: 72 grams carbohydrate; 320 kcal

BEFORE AFTERNOON EVENTS: eat a hearty breakfast & a lighter carbohydrate-based lunch 

HEARTY BREAKFAST: 2 eggs scrambled, 2 slices whole wheat bread, 2 tbsp peanut butter, 1 tbsp jam, 1 cup skim milk, ½ cup OJ, 1 banana (small). Totals: 87 grams carbohydrates; 685 kcal

LIGHTER LUNCH: 1 cup chicken noodle soup, 1 plain dinner roll, 1 cup skim milk, 1 orange. Totals: 64.5 grams carbohydrate; 310 kcal

SNACK EXAMPLES: 2 hours before exercise: granola bar, fruit (banana, orange, apple), bagel, yogurt – low fat/non fat, sports bar, low fat /20% total fat and low protein.

DURING EXERCISE: sports drink, crackers, fruit, sports bar

BEFORE EVENING EVENTS: eat a hearty breakfast and hearty lunch; eat a light snack 1-2 hours before (if tolerated)

HEARTY LUNCH: subway 6” roasted check breast, 1 chocolate chip cookie, 1 apple (medium). Totals: 92 grams carbohydrate; 590 kcal

SNACK: 1 cup OJ, 1 banana (small), 1 granola bar.  TOTALS 60 grams carbohydrate, 240 kcal

Thanks to Iowa State University, University Extension