Potato chips are one of the most popular snacks in America. They're also one of the most convenient, since you can find them in just about any vending machine. It's as if the food gods want us to devour as many bags of potato chips as humanly possible!
But if you're a high performance athlete, just say no to regular [fried] chips, and say yes to baked potato chips. They'll give you a healthy dose of carbs without performance-inhibiting fat.
A single serving of regular potato chips comes with 19 grams of fat—including 6 grams of saturated fat. Compare that to the 1.5 grams of fat and no saturated fat in a serving of baked potato chips. Too much saturated fat has been linked to prostate cancer and heart problems. Sure, those problems will be more cause for concern further down the road, but in the short term, the additional fat in your diet could slow you down and limit your ability to sustain performance for extended periods of time.
Potato chips are good for fueling up on carbs to energize the rest of your day. Regular chips deliver approximately the same amount of carbs as the baked variety [24-26 grams]—but again, with baked chips, you avoid the unhealthy fat intake.
Some final numbers to consider: baked chips come with 130 calories [13.5 from fat] versus 274 calories [160 from fat] in a regular bag. We at STACK are certainly not against calories, since proper fueling is vital for performance and muscle growth. But as a mid-afternoon snack, baked chips give you everything you need, leaving room for more healthy calories later in the day.
Healthy snacks throughout the day are important to meet the energy demands of high performance athletes. When choosing a snack, steer clear of greasy chips and go for the baked kind. You'll get the carbs needed to fuel your intense workouts without filling up on unhealthy fats.
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