1.SOME NUTRIENTS ARE DIFFICULT TO OBTAIN IN SUFFICIENT QUANTITY AS PART OF A NORMAL DIET
Consuming casein protein before bed has been shown to benefit overnight protein synthesis however this would mean consuming a litre of milk or yoghurt resulting in a substantial calorie consumption and potentially disrupted sleep
Creatine has been shown to improve lean mass and power. Consuming 20g creatine (split into 4 x 5 g doses) per day followed by 3-5g per day. Creatine is found in salmon, pork and steak. Uncooked contains 3 – 6g per kilogram. Therefore it would be impossible to consume 1kg of raw meat 4 times per day
2. SOME NUTRIENTS ONLY FOUND IN FOOD ATHLETES DO NOT LIKE OR CONSUME
Every athlete is different in terms of food likes, dislikes and allergies therefore supplementing with specific nutrients and may be a good option
Omega 3 is important for maintaining heart health. It is found in high quantities in oily fish such as salmon, mackerel and sardines. For those that don’t consume fish, supplementation ensures they get all the nutrients they require.
3. THE NUTRIENT CONTENT OF SOME FOODS WITH BENEFITS VARIES SIGNIFICANTLY
Consuming around 3 – 6 mg/kg body of caffeine benefits performance. However the caffeine content of drinks and food can vary significantly from 15 to 250mg per serving.
Although Nitrate is abundant in leafy green veg and root vegetables, the nitrate content varies significantly. Trying to consume 16 beetroots before a competition is impossible, therefore using concentrated nitrate supplements are much easier.
4. CONCENTRATED DOSES OF SOME NUTRIENTS ARE REQUIRED TO CORRECT DEFICIENCIES
High training demands combined with busy schedules, particularly during winter time increased athlete risk of illness. Thereforesupplementing with Vitamin C, probiotics and Vitamin D (particularly in winter) may help to reduce days lost to illness.
5. SOME FOODS DIFFICULT TO CONSUME IMMEDIATELY BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER EXERCISE
It is well known that carbohydrate is essential for sport performance, guidelines suggest consuming 30 – 90g carbohydrate per hour depending on sport and intensity – this is incredibly difficult to do using whole food. An energy gel or sports drink is easier for athletes to consume.
6. TESTED SUPPLEMENTS HELP WHERE THERE ARE CONCERNS ABOUT HYGIENE OR CONTAMINATION
For travel to games and training far away or if there is little food storage provision (i.e. no fridge or access to food to purchase, Informed Sport approved supplements from reputable brands may provide a good way to consume the nutrients needed before, during and after exercise