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Poor Nutrition for Young Athletes

written by: AlyssaAst • edited by: Leigh A. Zaykoski • updated: 9/15/2010

It's vital to fully understand the poor nutrition information for athletes to allow athletes to preform their best. Without the proper nutrition needed, young athletes can suffer serious complications. These complications can easily be avoided with the correct diet.

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    Poor Nutrition Information for Athletes

    Nutrition's directly linked to athletic performance. A proper diet containing adequate calories, minerals, vitamins, and protein give athletes the energy necessary to perform at their best. Poor nutrition produces many negative results for an athlete. Consequences of bad nutrition can cause a number of health concerns.

    It's very important for a young athlete to maintain a proper diet because without it, the body can't operate efficiently. It even affects the body’s ability to fight disease and illness. Without proper nutrition the body can't recover properly after exercise. If carbohydrates aren't incorporated into an athlete’s diet, the body has no fuel to function properly. Poor nutrition for young athletes can weaken the muscles and cause joint pain. If an athlete doesn't maintain proper nutrition they can suffer from chronic fatigue, poor concentration, and frequent illnesses. Often, the result of poor nutrition can lead to lack of fiber in the body. This then results in the athlete suffering from intestinal problems during and after exercise.

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    Athletic Nutrition

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    Lack of B Vitamins

    When athletes don't follow health nutrition information for athletes their body's often becomes depleted of B vitamins. If this occurs the body can't complete high intensity exercises properly. Without the proper amount of B vitamins, the body's ability to build and repair muscles becomes reduced, as well as the ability to repair cells properly. If the body doesn't have enough B vitamins it's incapable of converting sugars and proteins into the energy the body needs to perform properly.

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    Lack of Protein

    Lack of adequate protein intake can lead to severe athletic consequences. Without protein the body isn't able to repair body tissue, bone, and muscle properly. It's difficult to maintain balanced hormone and enzyme levels. The ability to produce hormones and enzymes is decreased when the body doesn't have enough protein. Lack of protein often results in a poor immune system and low energy levels.

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    Lack of Minerals

    Nutrition for athlete's needs to include healthy levels of zinc or their performance can suffer. Without zinc the body won't grow properly. Zinc is required in the body to maintain a healthy immune system. If an athlete’s diet doesn't include zinc, the muscle cells of the body won't have high levels of energy.

    When an athlete doesn't have proper levels of calcium their bones and teeth may become weak. Lack of calcium can lead to improper muscle functions and the risk of blood clots increases. Signals can't be properly transmitted along the nerves if an athlete doesn't have adequate levels of calcium in their body.

    Poor nutrition can lead to iron deficiency. The athletes' performance will greatly suffer if this does occur because the body won't be able to properly carry oxygen to the red blood cells and muscle cells.

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    Lack of Vitamins

    Athlete's with bad nutrition habits often have low levels of essential vitamins. If levels of vitamin C become too low the body's energy levels become decreased. The body can't properly build connective tissues for the bones. Vitamin E levels can also become low with improper nutrition. When this occurs the cells of the body can't properly repair themselves. The body’s ability to protect the cells of the body from free radical damage is decreased when the body lacks vitamin E.

    Improper nutrition often deprives athlete's of healthy fats in the body. Without these healthy fats the body can't grow normally and can result in an imbalance in hormones. Athlete's often don't consume enough water either. They then become dehydrated causing numerous consequences. It can lead to muscle cramps, nausea, and fainting. Body temperature cannot be regulated without adequate amounts of water.

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    References

    Photo: "Swimmers" by Ngould Stock.xchng

    “Nutrition and Athletic Performance" Cynthia Dennison MD, August 6, 2007,

    “Vitamin Deficiency Leads to Poor Athletic Performance" Oregon State University, August 6, 2007

    “Athletic Health" Dr. Robert Jackson’s Online Clinic, 2008

    “Sports Nutrition" Hornet Juice, 2008

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    Disclaimer

    Please read this disclaimer regarding the information contained within this article.