Golf Nutrition On And Off The Course
For best competition performance on the golf course, maintaining proper nutrition is very important. There's no one specific food or diet that will fit every golfer's needs. A golfer's nutrition plan should be individualized to meet the needs of training and competition or recreational play. Since carbohydrates are the primary fuel for performance related activities, they should be the primary consideration of a golfer's diet.
Listed below is a breakdown of the amounts of food sources a golfer should have to maintain optimal performance on the course.
? 20-30% of daily calories from proteins.
? 20-25% of daily calories from fats.
? 50-60% of daily calories from carbohydrates.
These ranges leave you some room to create the ratio that works best for you. Here are some common ratios. They are listed in the order of carbohydrates, protein, then fat: 50-30-20, 55-25-20, 60-20-20. Each of these combinations promotes balance, while favoring carbohydrates to promote better energy. Whether eating for weight loss or to improve performance, here are 3 rules to follow which will guide you to a greater level of success.
1. Eat 5 to 6 small meals throughout the day.
2. Eat every couple of hours to increase your metabolism and keep energy levels constant.
3. Eat well balanced meals containing some carbohydrates, proteins and fat.
Other healthy eating tips include drinking plenty of water, taking a daily multi vitamin/mineral, limiting or eliminating alcohol from your diet and choosing whole, unrefined grain products over highly processed options. Sweat losses may be considerable especially when tournaments are played in hot and humid conditions. While you can always pick up drinks or snacks on the course, they may be at lengthy intervals and not allow sufficient opportunity for fluid replacement during a round.
Since players will usually miss a meal while playing a round, they may be faced with no carbohydrate intake for five or six hours. Combined with exercise and nervous stress, this situation may cause a drop in blood-sugar levels in susceptible individuals affecting brain function and skill. Packing a small snack in your golf bag will help to prevent this problem.
Susan Hill is a nationally recognized fitness trainer, CHEK golf biomechanic and sports nutrition specialist. For more information on golf specific nutrition, exercises or stretches, visit http://www.fitnessforgolf.com.
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