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    sports nutrition
    RachaelK01 posted:
    Hi. I was wondering if anyone had advice on how my 15 yr old son (5'11"/ 220lbs/ v. athletic build)) should be eating particularly before his football games (offensive tackle) and lacrosse games. Increase carbs the day before? Is that too early? He stays pretty hydrated. I am not sure how much of a difference it actually makes in this stage of the game, but he might stay in this and get competive in post- high school, so we would kind of like to know.
    Also are there any college players that have weight reccomendations? Is it really condusive for him to try to gain weight? Or should he just lift (which is often except during football season) and just see where the lifting takes him?
    Thanks if you have any input. Rachael
    Louise_WebMD_Staff responded:
    I would take him to a dietitian that specializes in sports nutrition. You want to look at about 120 grams of protein per day would be my guess from reading recommendations from our fitness professional Rich Weil.

    Talk to his doctors and a sports medicine professional about the weight gain. He should get a body fat index done and get some counseling about his muscle/fat balance.
    David Berkoff, MD responded:
    Overall weight will depend on his position on the field. If he has hoped to be on the O-line then he may be small. if he is a quarterback he may be perfect. Overall he needs an adequate balance of protein carbs and fat in his diet. Carb loading I typically reserve more for the endurance athletes but keeping properly fueled up is very important. I think in the end god common sense is key. He is a big kid and obviously very active. He needs to eat a lot to keep up and this should be a well balanced diet. He should also be very aware of keeping well hydrated but not just water loading the day of a game. I am sure there are college demographics for typical size for each position on the field but at 15 the most important factor is enough of all of the vitamins, minerals and protein that his bodies requires to stay healthy and fit.
    RachaelK01 replied to David Berkoff, MD's response:
    Thank you both for your replies! Rachael
    MingLaw responded:
    Sports nutrition is basic nutrition- but fine-tuned. Like David Berkoff said, his weight goals will depend on his current position and size. If your son wants to be a 240 lb lineman, he will have to eat like a 240 lb lineman. It's good that your son stays hydrated- some other things for him to focus on are energy-dense foods to ensure adequate energy intake and electrolytes to help delay the onset of muscle cramps.

    According to the American Dietetic Association's position statement on Sports Nutrition and Athletic Performance stated that for athletes; 1.2-1.7g protein/kg bodyweight, 6-10g carbohydrate/kg bodyweight, and for fats, the Dietary Guidelines of 20-35% of the total energy intake should come from fat. So if you take these calculations for his goal weight, you'll be able to determine goal macronutrient intake needs.

    One really important thing to keep in mind during any sort of weight gain and sports performance is stomach discomfort. Do not introduce any new foods prior to performance- doing this can result in stomach discomfort. He should stick to foods he knows that sit well with his stomach before a game/practice.

    I myself wrestled at a division-1 college and am currently pursuing a career in sports nutrition after becoming a RD. Right now I am in my last year of college, majoring in nutrition.

    Good luck!

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