Paleo Diet For Athletes

Paleo Diet For Athletes

The basic principle of Paleolithic or Paleo diet is derived from the food patterns displayed by the early man and dates back to more than 10,000 years. The premise of this form of diet is that human beings are intrinsically accustomed to food items that are in their most natural form. This leads to the increasingly popular belief that people should refrain from consuming factory processed foods, which offer nothing but empty calories and have been found to cause numerous diseases as well. With the success rate of the caveman diet, it is no surprise that fitness experts are showing greater inclination towards Paleo diet for athletes as well.

The purpose of suggesting Paleo diet for athletes:

For any athlete, it is important to maintain his wellness and health to optimum levels and the best way to do that is to adapt to a nutrition system that provides him complete nourishment with minimum threat to his health. The Paleo diet for athletes is an ideal option because it plays a vital role in supporting their fitness regimens and replenishing their energy levels. Since the Paleolithic diet primarily aims at making organic foods a part of people’s diets, it helps athletes in keeping up with their targeted weight and nutrition without packing in any extra pounds.

Moreover, the wholesome nutritional values packed in the hunter-gatherer diet plan greatly emphasize on high protein consumption while minimizing the carbohydrate count to a larger extent. The recommended food items as part of the caveman diet are exactly the same as what athletes are advised to eat by their nutritionists, including healthy doses of lean meats, vegetables and fruits.

Foods that are a part of Paleo diet for athletes:

The Paleo diet for athletes follows pretty much the same rules as it does for anyone who wants to follow the diet regimen. There are, however, a few exceptions to the rule made especially for athletes who want to follow the Paleolithic diet. The permissible caveman foods for athletes include:

–          Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates, especially those acquired from refined grains, are forbidden as part of the hunter-gatherer diet. For athletes, however, there is a special exception to the rule as they need to consume carbohydrates in larger quantities in order to fuel their high energy practice and game sessions. In fact, athletes can consume carbohydrates if they stay within the parameters of carbohydrate consumption as prescribed by the Paleo diet for athletes.

The most important thing to be careful about are the sugar index of the carbohydrates the athletes consume. The diet suggests sticking to glycemic levels that are between the low to medium range before a strenuous exercise routine or gaming event. The same should be followed to replenish the energy levels after a player gets through with the training or game. As a general rule, the caveman diet strongly prohibits rice, breads and pasta but consider them permissible for athletes if they consume them within the recommended range.

–          Lean meats: Lean meats form an essential food group in the Paleolithic diet and are also considered to be a compulsory part of Paleo diet for athletes. Since lean meats have minimum fatty content, they are ideal for athletes to consume as they offer a high protein count, which is extremely important for any athlete to successfully carry on with high energy workouts and gaming sessions.

Items like boneless and skinless chicken pieces, lean meat steaks and fish filet – all acquired from free-range animals – are especially recommended for the strenuous regimens athletes have to follow. Seafood should especially be considered a staple food item for athletes as it not only provides essential proteins but is also rich in good fats.

Eggs are also an excellent source of protein and prove to be a vital part of the Paleo diet for athletes when acquired from poultry animals raised in their natural environs. The higher levels of protein contained in meats are excellent for athletes as it helps them in building up muscle and recover from any injury resulting from torn tissues.

–          Raw foods: Paleo diet for athletes is strongly inclined towards the consumption of vegetarian items like fruits and vegetables in their most natural and raw form. By consuming without cooking, the nutrition value of these live food items remains intact. For this reason, athletes’ nutritionists make salads a necessary part of their diet plans in order to provide them nutrients like vitamins and calcium through the consumption of vegetables like carrot, kale, turnip, cucumber, salad greens and radish.

Since athletes need a high calcium count to maintain their strength and vitality, the restrictions on dairy items can sometimes prove to be a challenge. However, leafy greens like kale are also considered to be among rich sources of calcium and can help substitute their calcium requirements effectively.