By Gloria Averbuch and Nancy Clark, authors of Food Guide for Women’s SoccerFood Guide for Women's Soccer

Women’s World Cup Nutrition Tip Tuesday!

Although nutritionists recommend eating a wholesome diet based on grains, fruits, and vegetables, some soccer athletes eat a diet with too many sweets and treats. According to Food Guide for Women’s Soccer, if you have a junk-food diet, you may be able to correct this imbalance by eating more wholesome foods before you get too hungry. Athletes who get too hungry (or who avoid carbohydrates) tend to choose sugary, fatty foods (such as apple pie, instead of apples). A simple solution to the junk-food diet is to prevent hunger by eating heartier portions of wholesome foods at meals. And once you replace sweets with more wholesome choices (including whole grain carbs), your craving for sweets will diminish. The key to balancing fats and sugars appropriately in your diet is to abide the following guidelines:

  • 10% of your calories can appropriately come from refined sugar, if desired. (about 
200-300 calories from sugar per day for most soccer players)
  • 25% of your calories can appropriately come from (preferably healthful) fat. (about 
450-750 calories from fat per day, or roughly 50-85 grams of fat per day)

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