Don't Become a Statistic: Eat Healthy

Young athletes grow rapidly, and the nutrition choices they make influence their health for life. STACK Expert Sarah Coffey provides tips for eating healthy.

Fruit

How many times are you told to "eat your fruits and vegetables?"

Well, according to an October report from the Journal of Nutrition, 88% of Americans fail to heed this advice.

Our nation is suffering an epidemic of obesity. A National Health and Nutrition survey found one in three adults and one in six teenagers can be considered obese. (Read What Makes Food Unhealthy?)

Active young athletes grow at a rapid rate, and the nutrition choices they make influence their health for life. A healthy diet can stabilize your energy, sharpen your mind and supercharge your athletic performance.

Learn how to eat healthier now to reap immediate benefits and protect your health for the future.

Whole Grains

According to The Whole Grains Council, only 11% of Americans' daily intake of grains (e.g., rice, pasta and bread) consists of whole grains. (See What's Better, Whole Wheat or Whole Grain?])

Here are some easy ways to hit your mark

  • Choose whole grain bread for your sandwich
  • Select brown rice instead of white
  • Use whole grain flour and whole grain pasta when cooking
  • Eat cereal whose first listed ingredient is a whole grain

Fruits and Vegetables

The USDA recommended daily allowance for adults is two to four servings of fruit and three to five servings of vegetables. Whether you "don't like them" or "they're inconvenient," it's time to ditch your excuses. If you're an athlete, fruits and vegetables are a great way to boost your performance.

Here are some easy ways to hit your mark

  • Be colorful when choosing what to fix for a meal
  • Stay away from fruit juices; many are high in sugar. Go for fresh fruit instead
  • Make fruit salad
  • Go to restaurants that encourage fruit and vegetable consumption

Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock

Topics: NUTRITION | HEALTH | ENERGY | PASTA | SANDWICH | FRUIT | SALAD | STABILIZE | VEGETABLES | CEREAL | BREAD | HEALTHY DIET | OBESITY | BROWN RICE