Choosing the food your kids need to eat can be a real hassle. There are so many factors to take into consideration that it can take parents hours of research to even begin to grasp this wide subject.
This is very similar to an earlier topic we covered about the best diet for soccer training. Now, we make things a few steps more complex as we search for the perfect diet for kids who play soccer.
One of the main issues that we will face is that we are dealing with kids here, and thus we cannot go for the usual diet that an athlete would go for, or even one that a beginner adult would use.
The perfect diet for kids who play soccer will of course include things that are found in the diets of adult soccer players, but there is more to it than that.
We first need to understand that as we grow our body has specific dietary needs that we must fulfill in one way or the other.
Finding a diet for kids who play soccer, or for all kids, should be first and foremost based on the most basic and valuable needs that children have in this regard.
First Step To Finding The Perfect Diet For Kids Who Play Soccer
Whenever I hear the words ‘diets for kids’, I am reminded of this phrase in one of my old Pediatrics books. It went something like this:
“When aiming to find the perfect diet for kids, one must not even use the word diet, due to its strong connections with a certain way of eating. Instead, it is more productive to refer to it as a child’s nutritional needs.”
This comes to mind because often parents find themselves in a position where they think that a child’s diet should be something that is similar to the diet of an adult.
While there are similarities; think the things you should avoid, a child’s nutritional needs are to an extent bigger than those of an adult.
Bigger not in scale but in variety. While we as adults can and sometimes should avoid certain foods that aren’t that bad, children most likely don’t.
It is here where we understand why the phrase children’s diet doesn’t quite work. For example, most adults try to use diets which cut fat or carbohydrates.
Most of the time, it is unhealthy fats and harmful carbs, but at times we see cases where one must cut these nutritions off completely.
A child’s diet or nutritional intake should consist of a large variety of foods which include; protein, carbs, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals.
Finding a right diet for kids who play soccer becomes a tad bit easier once you understand this and then act accordingly.
What Is The Perfect Diet For Kids Who Play Soccer?
Let us get something out of the way, why are we saying “perfect diet for kids who play soccer’’, if we just said that the word diet and kids doesn’t work perfectly.
Because if you are looking to make a change to the normal and healthy nutritional intake that a kid must have, then you are working on a diet. That is precisely what we will do in finding the perfect diet for kids who play soccer.
We won’t get too much into detail about it here, but the idea is that soccer players need to consume more carbs and fats than the average person.
As we explained there, this is because soccer players need the extra fuel that they’ll burn while practicing, training and playing soccer.
In adults and athletes we saw that soccer players tend to also lower their protein intake. However, this isn’t necessary for kids.
Since their bodies are still developing they will need all the protein they can take, to make sure they form healthy and strong muscles.
One step after the other, we are now at a point where we can see that the perfect diet for kids who play soccer will be one that simply adds a little bit to the food that a child should eat anyways.
It is especially important for kids that they stick to healthy sources of carbs and fats. The main sources for those are fish and fruits.
To make sure that you don’t go overboard it is important that you let your kids decide for themselves how hungry they are, and how much food they want to have.
The point shouldn’t be to tell them how much they need to eat constantly, instead try and focus at making sure that the options for food they have are healthy.
A perfect diet for kids who play soccer isn’t perfect without including some of the healthiest food for kids, such as: avocado, eggs, milk, whole grains, nuts, etc.
As a parting statement, allow me to point out that children, just like all humans, are equipped with very sophisticated mechanisms that let them know they are and aren’t hungry.
I want this stated clearly as it is important that we don’t drive the message of giving your children as much food as possible. That can lead to side-effects that aren’t welcomed.