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Proper nutrition is an absolute requirement for everyone, but especially for athletes. Unless you feed your body correctly before a workout, you’ll never gain full results from that workout. There are a few key nutritional guidelines that all athletes should follow. In this article we will discuss a few tips that can help to make following those guidelines easier on you.

For many people, starting the day with a carb-heavy breakfast sets a vicious cycle in motion, where they get hungry all day. If you are one of those people, help yourself lose weight by having a low-carb, protein-heavy breakfast. If you fix yourself 2-3 scrambled eggs and a quick cup of tea or coffee, and no toast, you will be amazed at how long those eggs will stay with you. You won’t get that 10:30am hunger zap. Similarly, if you drag a bit in the early afternoon, a protein snack, such as a cheese stick, hard-boiled egg, or a few slices of lean deli turkey or ham will give you a centered feeling and keep you from feeling hungry too soon.

Start replacing all your regular snacks for healthier options. Instead of eating chips and cookies replace them with fruit or yogurt. You will not only notice the difference after a few weeks when you do this but it will also help give you more energy when you exercise, remember you are what you eat.

Pack your own snacks for the flight. Food at airports and on planes can be quite expensive and selection can be limited. To save money and ensure you have healthy food that you enjoy, bring your own. This also can be a lifesaver if you end up in one of the stuck-for-hours-on-the-runway nightmare scenarios.

It may sound like a broken record but when it comes to nutrition, pull out that food pyramid you were given in elementary school. This will ensure that you get the proper combination of starches, proteins, carbs, and other essential elements of a healthy diet. If you are looking to be a productive member of society, or just of the workplace, being well nourished is the first step.

When considering nutrition for your child, it is important to focus on the meal when it is meal time. This is important because when a child is distracted from their meal by the television, overeating is always possible, as is the desire for unhealthy foods that are advertised. Keep the television out of the kitchen, and instead engage in conversation at the table.

Ensure you get at least 8 ounces of protein each day. This will ensure you receive the necessary protein and iron your body needs. Positive meats include bison and venison.

For optimal health, include foods in your daily diet that contain probiotics. Probiotics are the good bacteria that live inside your body. They aid in digestion and the proper break-down of foods so your body can absorb the nutrients efficiently. They work against the bad bacteria that sometimes invade your digestive system and cause diarrhea.

Many people love drinking iced tea, but try drinking green iced tea instead of “regular” iced tea. Green tea has polyphenols, which help protect against cancer, lower cholesterol and have anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Black tea contains polyphenols as well, but far less than green tea. Green tea also has less caffeine than black tea.

Lower your sodium intake by flavoring foods with herbs and spices, rather than salt. By using fresh herbs in everything from sandwiches to vegetables to eggs, you can amp up the flavor without the negative health effects of sodium. Herbs are simple to grow on your kitchen windowsill or porch and therefore, can be easily accessible whenever you need them.

As part of your nutrition plan, see if you can reduce drinking soda. You’ll reduce your sugar and calorie intake and avoid unnatural, artificial sweeteners. Drinking plain water is unappetizing for some people, but most enjoy the clean, natural taste. If you must, you can add small amounts of fruit juice to add a bit of flavor.

Make sure that you are getting enough dairy products. Yogurt, eggs. milk, cheese and butter, are all full of vitamins that our bodies need. The nutrition found in dairy products, cannot be found in any other food group, so it is important that you eat your recommended amount of dairy.

More and more people are discovering that they are gluten intolerant or completely allergic to it with celiacs disease. Gluten is the protein found in wheat, barley, rye and other grains. If you have a sensitive stomach, or digestive issues, check with your doctor to see if you might need to be tested.

Tomatoes are a versatile and terrific addition to the diet. In addition to being relatively low in calories and high in fiber, Vitamin A, and lycopene, it’s used in everything from pizza to cocktails. However, in order to get the best use out of it, one should lightly cook it with foods containing oil, like cheeses or meats.

Keeping track of your personal health will help you know if you are following a healthy diet and getting the nutrients that you need. Going to the doctor for an annual check-up is the best way to know that you have been doing what is required to stay very healthy.

Healthy individuals will eat a balanced diet and take their vitamins. Vitamins are an important part of a diet. Some vitamins specifically affect moods because they are precursors to certain neurotransmitters. Other vitamins, such as the B12 vitamin, have been proven to increase energy in a large enough dose. A body needs vitamins because it can’t produce or consume the necessary compounds from regular food.

In this article we have discussed some tips that can make it easier for athletes to maintain a nutritionally sound diet. Proper nutrition is an essential part of any fitness program and without it, you will never see the results you’re hoping for. Keep these tips in mind, and follow them daily for optimal results from your fitness routine.

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