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Sports Nutrition: Foods that Improve Athletic Performance

Jul 30, 2020
Mike Martin
Core Spirit member since Jul 30, 2020
Reading time 7 min.

Similar to a car that runs best when fueled up with gas, your body must be loaded with the proper fuel from food to achieve peak performance. Athletes rely on the right food to fuel their best routine; without it, stamina, energy, and overall execution will falter.

What you eat impacts the grade of your athletic performance as well as your experience during and after the exercise. The right amount of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, minerals, vitamins, and water will help achieve your goal.

Foods That Naturally Enhance Athletic Performance

An athlete cannot perform well without the proper diet, it should be on top of the list in your fitness drive.

The energy from food will help your body cut soreness, prevent ailments, and keep on building power and speed through physical action. Check out these food packs to improve your athletic performance.

Crunchy Nuts

Nuts are rich in protein and sound fats that are essential in every athlete’s weight control plan.

Consumed with carbs, they help level off the sugar in your blood and maintain the carbs for an extended period, instead of burning them off immediately. Also, they are easier to digest and don’t irritate your stomach. Nuts contain anti-inflammatory nutrients that take care of the bone health of athletes. The level of the bad cholesterol is cut, which benefits the heart.

Here are some nuts that improve an athlete’s performance:


Almonds are rich in magnesium, manganese, and vitamins B and E. Its high-antioxidant content provides improved stamina and fast recuperation. Athletes on an almond diet burn off more carbohydrates and utilize less oxygen during their workout.


Pistachios are a potent source of protein; vitamins A, B. E; minerals, potassium, copper, magnesium, and phosphorus. Protein is important for athletes, it helps repair damaged muscle and facilitates recovery. Vitamin B plays a vital role in energy metabolism and the production of hemoglobin that transports oxygen to the different parts of the body.


Pecans are low in fiber and protein but are stuffed with copper, manganese, and antioxidants. While It is great for the cardiovascular system, they have high-fat content, so check your consumption.


This delicious treat is a nutritional powerhouse filled with vitamin K, magnesium, copper, iron, selenium, zinc, and phosphorus than any nut. Cashews are low in fat that is good for producing red blood cells and building energy.

Healthy Herbal Teas

A sip of herbal tea will give athletes an additional push to achieve peak performance. It will keep you hydrated, low in calories, and gives you an extra kick to complete your day.

Herbal teas will lift energy and stamina limits; burn fats and build bone density and improve the rate of recovery after workouts.

Importantly, it increases your endurance capacity. Look at some herbal teas that athletes will benefit from drinking.

Green Tea

Green tea has been used by people for centuries for its therapeutic benefits. It was first used by the Chinese and Indians as a medicine in treating wounds, heart condition, digestive issues, mental ailments, and controlling body temperature.

Green tea has a lot of benefits and is popular among athletes for enhancing their level of performance during workouts and when competing. In the course of physical exertion, injuries cannot be discounted, its healing prowess restores the body.

Black Tea

Black tea or Masala tea drinkers take this without milk to enjoy the full benefits.

The tea cuts oxidative stress, has anti-inflammatory effects, and eases muscle fatigue.

Red Tea

Also called Rooibos tea it is well-known for its smooth sweet and smoky flavor.

The tea is high in antioxidants to help athletes fight inflammation and boost blood circulation to heal tissues that were damaged during physical activity. It is also rich in magnesium and zinc that helps the longevity of the body and its recovery.

Superfood Seeds

Small in size but packs a wallop these superfood seeds maximize the nutritional needs in your training diet. These mighty mites stimulate recovery from tough physical exercise and combat free radicals to prevent cell injury. Consider these powerhouse seeds in your regimen.


Protein: 10.3 g

Fiber: 0.9 g

Zinc: 3.2 mg

Magnesium: 179 mg

Fat: 12.6 g

Yes, hemp is a variety of the cannabis plant, but it is guaranteed not to get you high. Instead, it will help endurance athletes recover more quickly.

The seeds contain large amounts of magnesium for energy production and bone health, Vitamin E to prevent oxidative damage, and the absence of phytates allows the body to absorb the minerals easily.

Use it as a topping for your veggie salad, an add on to a yogurt parfait, or blend it with your smoothie.


Protein: 5.2 g

Fiber: 5 g

Zinc: 2.9 mg

Magnesium: 73.4 mg

Fat: 5 g

Pumpkin seeds are loaded with magnesium which helps muscle and nerve function, and blood pressure regulation.

Bake it in bread or muffins, roast it with a bit of salt, or buy at the store but shake off the excess salt.


Protein: 4.7 g

Fiber: 3.9 g

Manganese: 0.7 mg

Zinc: 2.0

Copper: 0.7 mg

Fat: 13.5 g

The humble sesame seeds have many essential minerals that are valuable to athletes. Manganese to help with bone health, copper for energy, iron to make hemoglobin which delivers oxygen to muscles, and zinc for increased immune health and energy.

Mix it with soy sauce and toss them on steamed veggies, bake into bagels and bread, or try them as a salad dressing.

Delectable Fish

Fish has less cholesterol and soaked fat than meat, it provides vitamin B and minerals like zinc and iron. It is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D which is good for heart health, ease joint stiffness and helps lose fat.

Here are some choices of fish which is tasty to eat and helps an athlete reach peak performance.

Wild-caught Salmon

Wild salmons have more nutrients, omega-3, B vitamins, and less saturated fat than farmed ones.

This pink fish is easily one of the best sources of proteins that help restore and build muscles after rigorous physical activity. It is abundant in B vitamins B6 and B12 used in transforming food for usable energy to stimulate physical training. The omega-3 coming from salmon helps heart health, reduce pain, and soreness from inflammation.

Whether you toss it on the grill, fry it, or mix it with other ingredients it is still tasty and healthy.


Trout is filled with almost all the nutrients you need. It contains a substantial amount of amino acids to trigger body repair and growth. The solid quantities of omega-3 ward off coronary afflictions and the vitamin B niacin converts food into energy.

Experience the tastiness of trout by oven roasting and seasoning it with salt, pepper, and lemon.

Nutritious Green Vegetables

Vegetables are more than a side to a meal, they are food’s thankless champions. Aside from brightening your plate, they pack nutrients essential for the maintenance and health of the body.

The vitamin and mineral from vegetables play an important part in an athlete’s performance and recovery after strenuous physical activity. Daily consumption of veggies will keep you healthy and reduce the risk of health problems.

Eat healthy by including these vegetables in your diet.


Popeye gained his powers from spinach and the same motivation why athletes reach out for this green leafy.

Spinach is brimming with nutrients, calcium, vitamin C, magnesium, zinc, and iron which are vital for an athlete’s performance. It has vitamin K to keep healthy bones and iron to help oxygenate the blood.

Getting bored with plain spinach? Be creative, mix it into your soup or top it on your sandwiches, quesadillas, and nachos.

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are high in fiber that supports a healthy digestive system, an excellent source of manganese for producing energy, and vitamin B6 for nerve function and muscle contraction. The orange flesh is rich in beta-carotene that keeps a good immune function, healthy skin, and eyesight. Don’t throw away the skin, it can prevent some types of cancer.

It is usually boiled and eaten with the skin on; foodies include this on their salad or scramble this with eggs.


Athletes can benefit from nutritional food by enhancing their performance, keeping them healthy, and living an active lifestyle.

A good diet can give you the added boost to finish a race and your dream of gold. Or just indulge yourself in your favorite sport and physical activity.

You are bound to be worn out and perform miserably when you don’t get enough nutrients.

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