Diet and nutrition have a direct and significant effect on the performance of soccer players, says Nutritionist-Dietician Elena Perlepe. As a soccer player, you would be right to find the best methods that help you optimize your performance. To boost health, it is increasingly common to tap into supplements to obtain key nutrients. So on that vein, what sort of vitamins and minerals do soccer players need?
Soccer players often have games and training sessions. A training session or a game has an energy cost of roughly 1500 kilocalories in males and 1000 kilocalories in females, based on the study published by Erzincan University. To earn back the lost kcals and make sure that you have enough energy, micronutrients like Vitamin B12 are critical. Vitamin B12 is commonly found in animal products like dairy and in plant products like soy. It helps to transform the food you eat into energy.
When you do one hour of strenuous activity, you lost more than a quart of water from your body, according to The American Council on Exercise. The loss of body water and associated electrolytes have an adverse impact on your thermoregulatory function. To rapidly promote hydration, electrolytes are often employed. Now, depending on your diet, like keto, for example, you will need to put back necessary keto electrolytes like sodium, potassium, and magnesium. These essential micronutrients are often less than normal levels.
For Stronger Immunity
As a player, your immunity must be strong to avoid getting sick and missing out on crucial training sessions. Critical vitamins like Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin E help boost your immunity, according to Julia Zumpano, a registered dietician. You can obtain Vitamin C through oranges, grapefruits, and tangerines. Vitamin C cuts down the likelihood of colds by 50%, according to the National Institute of Health. Vitamin B6 can be found in green and leafy veggies. Vitamin E helps to fight off infection and can be obtained through nuts and seeds.
For Stronger Bones
A soccer player needs strong bones to withstand tackles and sufficiently kick the ball when needed. Calcium is an essential mineral that helps to promote bone growth and bone strength. Regular consumption of calcium-rich foods like dairy products, broccoli, and kale can help you meet your daily required amount. It’s estimated that you’ll need at least 1000 mg of calcium every day if you’re over 18, based on The Office of Dietary Supplements. Vitamin D can also help you develop stronger bones and help you recover from fractures. Plain yogurt contains 30% calcium and 20% Vitamin D.
Soccer players, like yourself, need to use proper vitamins and minerals to have a healthy body. While vitamins and minerals can be obtained through a planned diet, you can also get them through dietary supplements. To make sure that you’re taking in the right food or supplements, it’s best to consult with a dietician or your doctor. That way, you’ll be sure that what you take in fits your bodily needs.