Healthy Eating and Fitness for Children

Kids should eat the right kind of food when engaging in fitness activities to stay healthy. Just like professional athletes who have nutritionists in their teams, kids should also know the importance of being fit and healthy by eating right.

Eating right

Kids need to eat food rich in calories. In a day, kids aged 6-12 usually have to take calories between 1,600 and 2,000, but this depends on how active the kid is or on how many hours of practice or light workout a child does everyday. In addition, the amount of calories should increase during puberty.

Make sure your child has a balanced diet consisting of healthy meals. Make tabulations of the food he or she eats and has to eat everyday. For weight concerns, seek the help of a dietitian or a nutritionist.

Minerals

Calcium and iron are the most important minerals a child needs. Calcium strengthens the bones and helps lessen the likelihood of breaking due to stress or strain. Calcium-rich food includes dairy products such as milk, cheese and yogurt, as well as green leafy vegetables. Orange juice that is fortified with calcium is also recommended

Meat, dried beans and iron-fortified cereals, on the other hand, are good sources of iron. Lack of iron makes a child susceptible to exhaustion. Kids truly need iron because of the fact that they lose it when they sweat. The same is true for girls who have their monthly menstrual discharge.

Going a diet

Kids must never go on a diet, because of the fact that their bodies need enough nourishment to develop and achieve its maximum height. Going on a diet may only compromise that. Having a balanced diet may give their bodies enough protein, but too much may lead to health problems like kidney damage. Meal-skipping also has the same result.

Liquids

Water intake must be a regular habit. Rigorous activities like exercise makes a child lose sweat, so drinking water helps keep a child hydrated. For kids who exercise a lot, drink plenty of water before, in between and after exercising.

Never let your child get thirsty. Water is the best choice when getting thirsty, while fruit juice with water is also good. However, do not go for caffeinated sodas or similar drink. Be careful with sports drinks that contain calories and sugar, especially during hot weather or when exercising for more than one and a half hour.

Pre-game meals

Eating a meal 2 to 4 hours before the game is advisable. Eat food that contains carbohydrates and protein, to get enough energy for the game. Avoid those that contain fat and fibers because this slows down digestion.

Sandwiches, nuts and fresh or dried fruits are advisable for those who are engaging in long practice hours. Sports bars can be convenient as well, but the healthy foods you eat are enough. Just avoid those that have too much sugar in them. It may give you the energy you need but it will not last that long, and will leave you drained of energy.