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Food and Water

Food for Fuel

What you feed yourself (food and drink) should fuel your body. Particularly if you want it to work for you. Inadequate nutrition can increase the risk of sports injuries by causing loss of muscle mass and bone density. It can also increase fatigue. Our bodies need carbohydrate and fats to provide energy and protein to rebuild muscle as well as vitamins and minerals to boost immunity and strengthen our bones.

All three macronutrients (Carbohydrates, Protein, Fats) are essential in our diet for exercise and recovery as well as everyday health. Carbohydrates break down into Glycogen which provides energy to our muscles. More complex carbohydrates such as pasta and cereals take longer to break down and maintain more stable energy levels. Fats can be used for energy if Glycogen levels are low but these take a long time to break down and be available for the muscles to use. Fats, however, do contain vital vitamins and fatty acids that the body uses to repair cells and reduce inflammation. Protein is used for muscle maintenance, growth and repair. Muscles are constantly being damaged and repaired through training as well as everyday life and injuries.

Getting adequate amounts of Calcium and Vitamin D helps to build and maintain strong bones and reduces the risk of stress fractures that can occur in high impact sports such as running, jumping and dance.

Pre-exercise fuelling can help during long or intense training sessions. These drain the body’s Glycogen supplies which can lead to loss of focus, poor decision making and fatigue. These factors increase the risk of injury and a longer recovery from training. A snack combining Protein and Carbohydrates before exercise will top up your Glycogen stores and reduce these risks.

Post-exercise fuelling should be done 30-60 minutes after activity for maximum benefit. This period is when muscle recovery happens most quickly. Again, eating both Protein and Carbohydrates will promote muscle repair and restock your Glycogen reserves.

Water to Hydrate

Most people known that they should drink more water, but why?

It stops you from confusing hunger and thirst and suppresses your appetite. This can help with weight loss. Raw fruit and Vegetables contain a fair amount of water and can add to your intake.

It aids digestion and stops bloating. Water is essential for the transport of nutrients around the body.

It helps the liver to function and flushes toxins away. Toxins are excreted through urine and sweat, lack of fluids inhibits this process. It can also cause constipation.

It plumps up the skin and smooths wrinkles. Regular water consumption improves the colour and texture of your skin by enabling it to build new cells.

Proper hydration leads to better athletic performance as water is needed to transport nutrients and oxygen to the muscles.

Improves our mood. Dehydration can lead to headaches, grumpiness and a “fuzzy” head.

Aim for 6-8 glasses of non-alcoholic fluids per day. More if it’s hot, you are exercising or if you are feeling ill.

Please get in touch If you have any questions or need some advice.