What is it and why do you need to eat “sports”?
Proper nutrition is the key to health and effective training. Each of us needs a sufficient amount of nutrients, vitamins and minerals per day, and those who exercise – doubly. Active
5 compelling reasons to hit the gym
physical activity depletes our body. To compensate for the loss, you need to increase the amount of usefulness in your diet. Sports nutrition or sports nutrition helps to achieve this goal.
Sports nutrition is a specific set of nutrients that are distinguished by purpose or composition. Depending on the purpose, sports nutrition is allocated, which is intended for:
- muscle building;
- increasing the duration of training;
- losing weight;
- protecting joints from damage;
- general strengthening of the body.
In terms of composition, sports supplements can be protein, carbohydrate, protein-carbohydrate (mixed), based on amino acids, creatine or vitamin-mineral complex.
Sports nutrition is selected based on the goals of its consumption. As a rule, creatine, protein, amino acids, gainer and vitamin complexes are needed by all athletes who want to increase their strength indicators, gain muscle mass, or those who are engaged in high-intensity training. Such supplements strengthen muscles, provide the body with flexibility and ease of movement.
Common types of sports nutrition
Protein (egg, milk, casein, soy) is one of the most popular products in the range of sports nutrition. It saturates with protein, which is the building material of our body. To satisfy the need for protein, you need to consume from 0.8 to 2 g of protein per day for each kilogram of weight. A lot of protein is found in animal products (meat, fish, milk, eggs, cheese, and yogurt) and plant foods (soy, tofu). Typically, protein is consumed after exercise or as a snack.
Doctor-cardiologist of the medical center “ON Clinic Dnipro” Mikhail Luchinin says:
“Lack of protein can lead to hair loss, nail problems, and a decrease in immunity. It is important that a lack of protein leads to the appearance of cardiovascular diseases, especially with intense physical exertion. “
Scientists from the University of Reading have found that it is possible to reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. To do this, it is enough to consume the protein supplements that bodybuilders prefer. According to a study, whey milk protein reduces the risk of heart and vascular problems by about 80%.
Gainer – A carbohydrate-protein mixture that helps to gain muscle weight, promotes muscle growth and is essential for strength training. The daily carbohydrate requirement varies between 45-65% of the total food intake. Simple carbohydrates are found in fruits, honey, dairy products, complex ones – in cereals, durum pasta, bread, legumes, potatoes.
Creatine – substance that increases the effectiveness of training. Most often, creatine is used by those who are involved in weightlifting, bodybuilding, powerlifting. Also, the supplement helps to increase muscle mass and build muscle mass. Typically, non-professional athletes take creatine for barbell exercises (leg presses, squats).
Chondroprotectors – rescuers of joints and cartilage containing chondroitin and glucosamine. These substances increase the elasticity of the cartilage tissue and activate the anabolic processes.
Fat burners – suppress appetite and stimulate metabolism, contain caffeine-containing substances. However, they only work in conjunction with exercise and proper nutrition. Fat burners drink half an hour before training.
In sports nutrition, vitamin complexes (dietary supplements) are widespread, which include vitamins of groups B, C, E. Also, supplements of minerals and amino acids are introduced into the trainee’s menu. In most cases, they are drunk both before and after training.
Dietary supplements help to supplement the diet with useful minerals, amino acids and other essential elements. It is necessary to observe dosages, including vitamins in the diet, and be sure to consult with your doctor regarding the appropriateness of their intake and combination. As a rule, indications and contraindications, as well as the rules of admission, are indicated on the packages of dietary supplements. Violation of these rules can lead to an allergic reaction (rash, peeling of the skin), the development of hypervitaminosis (an excess of one or more vitamins in the body, leading to intoxication).
I will add that food can be absorbed at different rates, which does not depend on the calorie content of food. Before physical exertion, it is better to eat quickly digestible foods (eggs, bananas, chicken), before sleep – slowly digestible (oatmeal, nuts, meat, cauliflower). The same rule applies to sports nutrition. For example, milk protein is absorbed quickly, while protein from casein is absorbed slowly. And also remember that carbohydrate-containing foods are digested first, then protein ones, and lipids (fats) are digested last.
Side effects of sports supplements
Sports nutrition should be balanced and dosed. Only then will supplementation be safe for your health. For example, excessive protein intake can not only threaten kidney failure with kidney problems, but it can also reduce bone density, which can lead to osteoporosis. But the consumption of milk protein and gainer, even in small doses, can lead to intestinal disorders and allergies, but only if lactose intolerance is diagnosed.
As for creatine, there are currently no studies that would confirm its absolute safety. Harvard Medical School does not believe that this substance will help you build muscle in adulthood. Therefore, it is better to use it at an older age to maintain the built up muscles.
Contraindications to all sports supplements do not exclude individual intolerance to the components. This rule applies to food, medicine and even household products. If the supplement contains at least one component that the body does not like, then you can get not only nausea and vomiting, but also an upset stomach.
Physician-therapist, endocrinologist and physiotherapist of the medical center “ON Clinic Kharkiv Palace of Sports” Natalia Shchukina notes:
“Sports supplements are an unregulated product category that is sold without restriction and in bulk to improve athletic performance. According to the Academy of Sports Medicine, their use, although a personal choice, is controversial from a medical point of view. Therefore, in each specific case, a consultation with the attending physician will not be superfluous. ”
Can you go in for active sports without sports supplements?
As a rule, no. Our body is not able to assimilate a large amount of regular food to replenish the loss of energy from sports activities. One American medical review suggests that sports nutrition can change from day to day. That is, its reception can and should be adjusted. It depends on what kind of exercise you are doing and what energy needs your body has. It is best to discuss this issue with both a doctor and a trainer.
Self-selection of types and dosages of sports nutrition can threaten:
- allergy due to individual intolerance to the components;
- bowel problems due to overdose;
- intoxication (nausea, vomiting), an increase in body temperature, which may be caused by the use of fat burners (side effects indicated on the packages).
As a general rule, the body uses carbohydrates or fats as the main source of energy (depending on the intensity and duration of exercise). Their lack leads to a loss of performance and results from training. Sports supplements contain virtually no fat. For this reason, they are suitable not only for athletes, but also for those who have problems with being overweight.
Also, many consider the benefits of sports supplements to save time for cooking: you have drunk and already full. But the most important thing is that such food contains an ideal balance of proteins, fats and carbohydrates. Of course, this has a positive effect on the condition of the skin, hair and nails. And the figure can be corrected much faster, of course, provided that sports are connected.
Studies show that those who exercise 3-4 times a week can meet their nutritional needs with a healthy diet by periodically adding sports supplements to their diet. As for professional athletes, they need sports nutrition on an ongoing basis. For example, the energy expenditure for extreme cyclists taking part in a cycling race on the Tour de France (France) is about 12 thousand calories per day.
I repeat, if you decide to introduce sports nutrition into your diet, you need to coordinate your desire with your doctor and trainer. Experts will help you choose the safe and optimal types of sports nutrition and dosages, taking into account your health condition. The same applies to diet and exercise.
Sports nutrition is just one of the helpers on the path to sports goals. Therefore, you should not bet only on sports supplements. To get a fit figure, take care of your diet, pay attention to your health (undergo routine medical examinations) and exercise.
How do you feel about sports nutrition?