Sunday, February 27, 2011

Tip of the week by Nancy Clark and Gloria Averbuch – Pancakes: soccer fuel!

Whether you want to recover from an early morning practice or an afternoon game, pancakes are a fun source of carbs to refuel your muscles.
To make pancakes into a balanced sports meal, enjoy them with a poached egg or a tub of Greek yogurt (for a protein boost) plus some fruit salad or glass of juice. 

Here’s a recipe for light and fluffy prizewinners.

Oatmeal Pancakes

1/2 cup uncooked oats (quick or old fashioned)
1/2 cup plain yogurt, buttermilk (or milk mixed with 1/2 tsp vinegar)
1/2 to 3/4 cup milk
1 egg or 2 egg whites, beaten
1 tablespoon oil, preferably canola
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt, as desired
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup flour, preferably half whole-wheat and half white
Optional: dash cinnamon

1. In a medium bowl, combine the oats, yogurt, and milk. Set aside for 15 to 20 minutes to let the oatmeal soften.
2. When the oatmeal is through soaking, beat in the egg and oil and mix well. Add the sugar, salt (and cinnamon). Stir the baking powder into the flour; then add and stir until just moistened. For best results, let the batter stand for 5 minutes before cooking.
3. Heat a lightly oiled or nonstick griddle over medium-high heat.
4. For each pancake, pour about 1/4 cup batter onto the griddle. Turn when the tops are covered with bubbles and the edges look cooked. Turn only once.
5. Serve with syrup, honey, applesauce, yogurt, or other topping of your choice.

Yield: six 6-inch pancakes                                         Total calories: 1,000
Calories/serving (2 pancakes): 330               57 g Carb; 10 g Pro; 7 g Fat

This is just one of many recipes in Nancy Clark’s Sports Nutrition Guidebook, 4th Edition

Manya Makoski’s Snickerdoodle Pancakes

This recipe is from soccer pro Manya Makoski. Manya’s addition of yogurt and strawberries makes this a complete and healthful meal.

2 eggs
¼ cup (35 g) sugar
2 teaspoons (10 g) baking powder
1/4 teaspoon (1 g) salt
2 teaspoons (10 g) vanilla extract
2 teaspoons (2 g)  ground cinnamon
2 cups (250 g)flour (preferably half whole wheat)
1/2 cup (120 ml) milk

1. Beat eggs and sugar together with a whisk.
2. Add in the baking powder, salt, vanilla, and cinnamon.  Stir in the flour and milk until the batter is mixed well.
3. Heat the frying pan and spray with non-stick cooking spray.  Pour batter into small circles on the frying pan.  Flip when small bubbles reach the surface of the batter and the edges of the pancakes are dry.
4. Enjoy with vanilla yogurt and strawberries.

Yield: 4 servings
Total Calories: 1,200 (without toppings)
Calories per serving: 300

60 g Carbohydrate
9 g Protein
3 g Fat

From: Food Guide for Soccer: Tips and Recipes from the Pros by Nancy Clark and Gloria Averbuch.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Tip of the week by Nancy Clark and Gloria Averbuch – Want better recovery? Eat more colorful fruits!

Tired of feeling sore after a game? Try eating more colorful fruitsand veggies. Tart cherries, pomegranates, purple grapes, and blueberries. These are just a few of the colorful fruits and their juices that are filled with healing powers. Colorful fruits are rich in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties; they are perfect remedies for soccer players who get “beat up” during a game.

 Several studies have shown the power of fruits in reducing muscle pain. For example, tart cherry juice taken for 7 days before—and on the day of— a 12 mile run significantly reduced post-run pain (1). Sounds to me like a better alternative to NSAIDs with the risk of adverse medical effects.

While the folks who sell tart cherry juice products have funded this research, the bottom line is that all colorful fruits and their juices are very powerful in terms of reducing pain associated with inflammation. These include Welch’s purple grape juice, PomWonderful pomegranate juice, as well as strawberries, blueberries, dates, mango….

How do you plan these health-protective fruits into your diet? Four easy suggestions include:

• Whip up a fruit smoothie for breakfast or recovery snack: frozen berries + OJ + Greek yogurt or powered milk for protein.

• Sprinkle generous amounts of chopped dates, dried apricots and other dried fruit on top of oatmeal or other breakfast cereal.

* Tuck two bottles into your gym bag: one with water, one with tart cherry, pomegranate or blueberry juice into your gym bag so the fluids will be ready and waiting to quench your thirst. 

• Establish a food rule: You have to eat some dates (they are powerfully sweet and very rich in anti-oxidants) before you have a cookie or other dessert. (Hopefully, this will even kill your appetite for the cookie!)

Eat wisely and be well,
Nancy Clark and Gloria Averbuch
Food Guide for Soccer: Tips and Recipes From the Pros

(1) Kuehl KS, Perrier ET, Elliot DL, Chesnutt JC. Efficacy of tart cherry juice in reducing muscle pain during running: a randomized controlled trial. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2010 May 7;7:17.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tip of the week by Nancy Clark and Gloria Averbuch – A pain in the side...

About 60% of athletes know what a side stitch feels like. It’s a stabbing pain in your gut that can bring you to a stand-still. Because getting attacked by a side stitch is unpredictable (that is, one day you might get one but the next day you don't), they are hard to research. The available data suggests they commonly occur in the same spot: on the upper right side of the abdomen where the liver is attached to the diaphragm by two ligaments.

To treat a side stitch, many athletes bend forward, stretch the affected side, breathe deeply from the belly, push up on the affected area, tighten the abdominal muscles, and/or change from "shallow" to "deep" breathing. (Pretend you are blowing out candles while exhaling with pursed lips.)

While we aren't 100 percent certain what causes a side stitch, the prevailing theory is exercise creates stress on the ligaments that connect the liver to the diaphragm. Stitches can be provoked by a heavy dose of pre-exercise food and fluids, minimal training and inadequate pre-exercise warm-up. Wearing a tight belt can help reduce organ jostling and reduce the symptoms. You could also record your food and fluid intake to try to detect triggers (too much pre-exercise water? too large a meal?). With repeated dietary tweaks, you can hopefully discover a tolerable portion of pre-exercise fuel, or at least start to train your body to be able to tolerate small amounts that can enhance your performance without sending you to the sidelines.

Eat wisely and play well,

Nancy Clark and Gloria Averbuch
Food Guide for Soccer: Tips and Recipes From the Pros

For more information on diestive concerns, see Chaper 9: Fueling Before Exercise in Food Guide for Soccer: Tips and Recipes From the Pros.