Nutrition and Swimming

Jeff and Terri Adams
Mar 7, 2019

Nampa Swim Team recently invited a sports dietitian to talk to swimmers about nutrition and the role it plays with performance.  Clare Zamzow presented some great information to our athletes and provided some great hands-on tools for learning how nutrition can impact swimming. 

A handout is attached [HERE] for you to download.

Here are a few websites that Clare recommended which are excellent (and credible) resources for sports nutrition info. They each have fact sheets/handouts listed that can be printed off. 

Clare also asked for questions from the group and here are the responses:
  • Q: Ideas for school lunches to pack
  • A: Tuna salad + crackers (I like Triscuits) + fruit + cherry tomatoes, carrots, or celery; Peanut butter w/ raisins on celery + sliced apple w/ cheese slices + crackers or pretzels; Baked or roasted sweet potato (maybe leftover from dinner the night before) tossed w/ some salad stuff like spinach, tomatoes, cubed cheese topped w/ oil & vinegar + fruit + granola bar; Cheese + crackers + applesauce + sliced bell peppers, carrots, or cherry tomatoes (or other veg) + granola bar; Plain yogurt + granola + berries (like frozen blueberries that have thawed out) + sliced bell peppers, carrots, or cherry tomatoes (or other veg); (Make the portion sizes of the above food to fit the appetite/needs of the athlete); For non-perishable options, beef or turkey jerky and the tuna-lunch packs are other things that can be included. 
  • Q: Are there food requirements for certain age groups?
  • A: Yes, though they are general recommendations and not designed for the athlete. They are a good guide but they shouldn't necessarily be followed exactly. Click on the food groups listed on the lefts side of the Choose My Plate webpage. A table is provided for each food group that lists recommended daily servings for each age group. 
  • Q: Why is artificial sugar any different from normal cane sugar?
  • A: Artificial sugar does NOT provide any energy (it doesn't have any calories), while cane sugar does provide energy. Artificial sugar also tastes sweeter than cane sugar. For some people, like someone with diabetes, artificial sugar can be helpful to use when sweetening foods like oatmeal, plain yogurt, or some food that you want to taste a little sweeter. Artificial sugar is also what is used in "diet" drinks (Diet Pepsi, Diet Sprite, Crystal Light lemonades). For most people, I recommended avoiding artificial sugar and eating real sugar because it tastes better and you should enjoy something sweet if you want it. You will feel more satisfied after eating the real sugar. 
  • Q:  Are gummy bears good for you?
  • A:  Gummy bears are ok as a quick energy snack, however, I would definitely suggest applesauce, juice or some dried fruit before gummy bears!