Now that it’s time for your high schooler to get back to sports, it’s important to educate yourself on how they can prevent high school sport injuries. One of the best ways to keep your teen healthy and injury-free is to promote good nutrition. Here are several tips that are essential for injury prevention and improved performance:
Your teen should get into the habit of drinking plenty of water throughout the school day. This way, they are hydrated and ready to go when it’s time for practice or a competitive game. Staying hydrated will reduce their risk of headaches, fatigue, mental confusion, heat illness, and injury.
Eat Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids, which can be found in fish such as salmon, sardines, herring, and mackerel are vital for your high school athlete. While they are known to keep the heart in good shape, research has proven that omega-3s may also protect against concussions and other serious head and brain injuries.
Opt for a Pre-Game Snack
Before any practice or game, encourage your teen to eat a pre-game snack. Some examples of excellent pre-game snacks which are portable and okay to keep in a backpack or locker include homemade trail mix, fruit, pretzels, and granola bars. Pre-game snacks can provide energy for your teen’s working muscles and reduce their risk of high school sport injuries as a result.
Eat Immediately After a Game
Eating after a practice or game is just as important as eating before. A grilled chicken sandwich on whole wheat bread, salmon with steamed veggies, or an egg sandwich with a bowl of fruit are all great options. Proper post-game nutrition can help your teen’s body recover and prepare for the next time they play.
Avoid Fast Food
It may be tempting for your teen to stop into a local fast food joint after a game. While this is convenient, it can be very detrimental to their health. Regular fast food consumption may lead to unhealthy weight gain, weak bones and muscles, heart problems, diabetes, and the increased risk of high school sport injuries.
Choose Foods & Beverages with Vitamin D
Vitamin D can improve bone health as well as mood and cognition. Your high schooler should try to get 400 to 800 units of vitamin D each day. Foods such as cheese, eggs, milk, almonds, and tofu all contain vitamin D.
Contact Paris Orthopedics
Despite your teen’s efforts to eat healthy, they may experience an injury while playing a high school sport. If this occurs, contact us right away to schedule an appointment with one of our orthopedic specialists.