What is a healthy diet for skiers? Get started with these nutrition basics:
Carbs are the fuel that our bodies use for energy, so you want plenty of these. You also want to make sure you choose the right type.
Low quality carbohydrates, like sugar or refined flour, like you find in donuts, bagels and most breakfast cereal, will give you a big burst of energy followed by a bottoming out of energy as your blood sugar drops.
On the other hand, high quality carbohydrates, such as whole grains and fruit, will give you sustained levels of energy so you can keep tearing up the mountain. Because of the fiber in high quality carbohydrates, they turn into sugar in your body more slowly than the low quality ones, which is what keeps your energy levels more even.
Protein does a few things. First, it helps to keep you feeling full. It also helps all those carbs you ate turn into turn into sugar in your body more slowly, which is a good thing, because your energy levels will be even more sustained. Protein is also necessary to repair and rebuild muscle. Protein is not a super-great source of energy on its own, though, so you want to make sure you eat it in addition to your carbs, not instead of them. Great sources of protein include eggs, low-fat dairy, nuts, beans and lean meat.
Fat makes food taste great, but too much of it will sap your energy levels and slow you down on the slopes. Plus, research has shown that doing a bunch of exercise, like skiing hard, after eating a high fat meal can damage your arteries. So skip the bacon and cheese biscuit.
©2015 Diana Sugiuchi, RDN/LDN