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Sports Nutrition for everyday activity and the serious athlete

Sports nutrition is the foundation of athletic success. It is a well-designed nutrition plan that allows active adults and athletes to perform at their best.

It supplies the right food type, energy, nutrients, and fluids to keep the body well hydrated and functioning at peak levels.

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How some men have overcome their eating disorders. Why discussion about eating disorders are not common in the male space.

When high level athlete Mary Caine was wronged by her coach.

What is RED-S?

Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport

it is characterised by low energy availability due to a calorie deficit

Who's at risk?

Competitive athletes may be at a higher risk than the more casual athlete due to a more rigorous training schedule and the "play-to-win" nature of their sports. Endurance sports, like cross-country running; aesthetic sports, like gymnastics or ballet; and sports which require formfitting uniforms, like swimming.

How will RED-S affect performance?

- Lowered energy availability: an underfueled athlete is a slowed and weakened athlete.

-Amenorrhea: Loss of menstrual periods may signal a change in your body's intricate and complicated hormone system.

- Low bone mineral density: Loss of bone, especially if you are an athlete, can be an unfortunate setup for an injury.

Responsibility of Others

With athletes often unable to identify the issue objectively, it’s crucial that their support team develops an understanding of RED-S. For women, discussion of menstruation more openly in the athletic community. 

What are warning signs?

Physical/Medical Signs and Symptoms

  • AmenorrheaDehydrationGastrointestinal problem, Hypothermia, Cardiac abnormalities: bradycardia (low heart rate), orthostasis (abnormal changes in heart rate and/or blood pressure during positional changes)Stress fractures (and overuse injuries)Significant weight loss, Muscle cramps, weakness, or fatigueDental and gum problems

Psychological/Behavioral Signs and Symptoms

  • Anxiety or depressionClaims of "feeling fat" despite being thinExercising beyond what's expected/requiredExcessive use of the restroomUnfocused, difficulty concentrating, Preoccupation with weight and eating, Avoidance of eating and eating situationsUse of laxatives, diet pills, etc." 

Prevention of RED-S

  • Choose an activity that complements your natural body strengths and suits you as an individual.

  • Frequent weigh-ins, weight comments and punitive consequences for weight gain may increase an athlete's risk for the Triad.

  • Appreciate your own healthy, active body. Don't compare yourself to others, especially those portrayed in the media. Think of fuel as the ultimate performance enhancer! Before choosing a weight-loss diet, consult with a nutritionist who can provide personalized recommendations to promote a healthy weight and boost athletic performance.

  • Don't starve your bones. 

  • Be a role model with both your words and actions. Speak up when you hear others making negative comments about weight or body shape.

Shira Evans
Shira Evans, MS, RD, CSSD, LDN
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Shira introduces herself and shares the value of sports nutrition.

The Struggle for College Athletes
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Shira breaks down the pressures of the college athlete and how flexibility of a Virtual Intensive Program can help.

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