Protein Needs in Athletes
- Water is the most important nutrient for active people.
- When you sweat, you lose water, which must be replaced. Drink fluids before, during, and after workouts.
- Water is a fine choice for most workouts. However; during continuous workouts of greater than 90 minutes, your body may benefit from a sports drink.
- Sports drinks have two very important ingredients - electrolytes and carbohydrates.
- Carbohydrates in sports drinks provide extra energy. The most effective sports drinks contain 15 to 18 grams of carbohydrate in every 8 ounces of fluid.
- Carbohydrates are sugars and starches, and they are found in foods such as breads, cereals, fruits, vegetables, pasta, milk, honey, syrups and table sugar.
- Sugars and starches are broken down by your body into glucose, which is used by your muscles for energy.
- Building muscle depends on your genes, how hard you train, and whether you get enough calories.
- The best way to make sure you are not getting too many or too few calories is to check your weight from time to time.
- Lack of calcium can contribute to stress fractures and the bone disease, osteoporosis.
- The average American diet has more than enough protein for muscle building. Extra protein is eliminated from the body or stored as fat.
- For health and peak performance, more than half your daily calories should come from carbohydrates.