Maintaining health to train and compete

Maintaining health to train and compete

Release Date : 11-Dec-2014 | Name : | Category :
Author : Exerformance

The importance of nutrition for females is superior to that of males. Female athletes have to consider far more when choosing the correct foods to eat to maintain bodily function and be able to perform to the required level or specific goals.
For example with food choice:

It is important to avoid fizzy drinks; this is because the fizz comes from a substance called phosphoric acid. The body uses calcium to neutralise this acid so it doesn’t cause damage, however this calcium is taken away from the bones.
So here are some top nutrients and where to find them to maintain and improve health to train and compete.


The benefits of calcium are the positive effects on bone strength and tissue repair - important post training or competition. Athletes should consume around 1200-1500mg per day. This is of particular importance for female athletes, where hormonal changes can take place from increased training load, which can affect bone density and cause premature osteoporosis (brittle bones). Bone health is key in contact sports as the body is constantly under impact. Sources come from milk, low fat cheese, yogurt, broccoli, legumes and seeds and nuts. Another way of increasing bone density/strength would be resistance training.


The importance of vitamins is for immune function support, maintaining health of skin and tissues and to reduce infection. Vitamins are found in colourful vegetables and green leafy vegetables.
The B vitamins found in red meat, turkey and tuna have great benefits for endurance athletes, helping release energy from food sources. B vitamins are also beneficial for heart health and in preventing the reduction of Omega 3 stores. Omega 3 itself is important for heart health, blood vessel suppleness and reduced inflammation.


Typically iron can be low in female athletes due to menstruation, therefore identifying the importance of iron in the diet. The adverse affects of low iron levels are fatigue and headaches, limited endurance capacity and at really low levels anaemia can inhibit the ability to perform exercise, train and compete. Iron can be found in food sources such as spinach, beans, most dark green leafy vegetables, fish, poultry and meat as well as some fruits (eg. raspberries, raisins, cherries).

Vitamin C

This allows iron absorption, therefore decreasing the effects of fatigue and being able to maintain training/performance load. Sources come from eg. oranges, parsley, papaya, pineapple, strawberries and brussel sprouts.

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