Sports Snacks for Kids!
Water is all you need!
A common myth is that kids need sports or energy drinks to improve their performance. Water is the best choice to hydrate before, during and after physical activity.
It is rare that children or youth need a sports drink. These products are designed for athletes who exercise intensely for a long period of time and cannot eat, for example, athletes that participate in triathlons.
Energy drinks can be dangerous for children and youth due to their high caffeine content and should be avoided.
Fuelling Sports Performance
Recreational sports do not usually increase children’s energy requirements. Children’s nutrition needs can be met through a healthy diet, as recommended by Canada’s Food Guide.
If you think your child’s participation in sports may require a specialized diet or supplements, consult with a Registered Dietitian for guidance.
Food Provided After the Game
Sometimes caregivers reward kids for participating or winning with indulgent food. This can create an unhealthy relationship with food as children may start to expect treats every time they are physically active. Providing rewards for being physically active also takes away from the enjoyment and reward of the activity itself.
Sometimes teams decide to bring food to the field after games or practices. If kids are hungry after physical activity, try these snack ideas:
- Fruit kebabs – put grapes, berries, melon or other fruit on a skewer
- Berries (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries)
- Melon slices or cubes
- Raw vegetable sticks (i.e. carrots, bell peppers) and hummus
- For a more substantial snack, try cheese strings and whole grain crackers
Don’t forget to rinse fruit and vegetables before preparing and serving!