The nutritional facts for one pack (61.5 g) of Skittles are as follows:
- 240 calories
- 2.5 grams of total fat
- 44 grams of sugar
- 54 grams of total carbs
But for Seattle Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch, the fruit-flavored candy contains a mystical power beyond its nutritional values.
During Thursday Night Football action against the Philadelphia Eagles, Lynch was spotted on the sidelines noshing Skittles after first-half touchdown runs of 15 and 40 yards. Lynch was in full "Beast Mode" all night, rushing for 148 total yards on 22 carries and leading the Seahawks to a 31-14 romp over the Eagles. (Read about the series of lifts Lynch uses to get into Beast Mode.)
Lynch's "Taste the Rainbow" ritual goes back to his high school playing days, when his mom used to reward him for touchdowns with Skittles.
We're not advocating Skittles as a mid-game snack, but Lynch may be on to something in the sense that his Skittles habit helps keep his mind in the game.
"You play better when you have fun," says sports psychologist Dr. Rob Bell. In the snack category, what's more fun than fruit-flavored candy?
According to Bell, your brain needs a break throughout the course of a game, especially in a physical, high-intensity sport like football. A snack break could be just what you need to keep your mind relaxed. You don't want to be mentally exhausted in the final quarter or period. "That's when you need the gas tank full of mental energy," says Bell.
The best in-game snack options? Viable options other than candy are plentiful, including bananas, granola bars and energy bars. If limited in quantify, hard candies can also do the trick—not only Skittles but also Starbursts, Jolly Ranchers and M&Ms. Anything that provides a quick boost of simple carbs can keep your energy levels kicking.
Watch the video above to learn how candy stacks up against other pre-game meal items, and to discover more fun snack food options from nutritionist Karen Freeman, who serves as consultant to the San Diego Chargers, San Diego Padres, Los Angeles Raiders and New York Rangers.
Photos: sports.yahoo.com, seahawks.sportspressnw.com
Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock