Nutritional Needs for Kids Involved in Youth Basketball

Nutritional Needs for Kids Involved in Youth Basketball

Wondering if your athlete is lacking in nutrition? Here are 3 tips to keep your young basketball player active and safe during their next season.

Vitamin and Mineral Needs

The first nutritional need for young athletes is enough vitamins and minerals. These things are important for athletes because they help with energy needs as well as help to prevent injury. According to Vital4U, common vitamins and minerals for athletes include magnesium, calcium, and iron, as well as others. Magnesium aids in muscle health and supports healthy transmissions of electrical signals throughout the body. Calcium helps to strengthen bones and keeps them from breaking, while iron supports a normal heartbeat and energy levels. It is common to find all three of these vitamins and minerals in both food and supplement capsules.

Calorie Needs

Awareness of caloric intake in youth who play sports is vital. Athletes need energy to fulfill the physical demands of their sport. Weight, height, age, and physical activity all determine caloric intake for a specific person. According to MBi Nutraceuticals, at 13 years of age boys need about 2000 to 2600 calories a day to have the proper amount of energy to keep up with their physical needs. Make sure to feed your players 3 nutritionally dense meals per day that include the three essential macronutrients: fat, carbs, and protein. You can also include 2-3 snacks per day to supply the athlete with enough energy for their practices and games. If your young athlete feels that they are not energetic enough throughout their games and practices, try upping their caloric intake slightly at each meal.

Hydration Needs

When athletes compete in competitions or perform in games, they usually lose a lot of water through their sweat. Hence proper hydration is another necessity in the world of sports. Water is important for the function of the body's organs, such as the brain and the heart. Water also provides the body with energy, as well as mental clarity to focus on athletic performance. There is a rule that you should drink upwards of 64 ounces of water per day. This suggestion is for moderately active people. Athletes need to drink twice the amount of water since they are moving more and sweating often. Always encourage your athlete to drink water before games to hydrate, as well as after games to rehydrate their bodies. Getting the right nutrients into your athlete is important for performance and energy output. Make sure they are receiving enough vitamins, minerals, calories, and water throughout their day in order to see the best results. Your athlete will see what amazing things they can do with their body with proper nutrition.

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