Athletes Eating Healthy

Do Olympic Athletes indulge in a sweet treat?

People often think that desserts are not for athletes. However, contrary to popular beliefs, even athletes can indulge in sweet treats. However, these treats are usually free from harmful ingredients like excessive flour and oil, allowing the athletes to maintain a healthy lifestyle while enjoying deserts. Let’s discuss this in detail.

These are some of the desserts athletes treat themselves to.

Many desert foods are rich in saturated foods, which impacts your health negatively, especially if you have planned out an entire workout regime afterward. For instance, ice cream that is rich in saturated fat, carbs, and sugar can cause bloating and affect workout routines.

Therefore, it’s essential to usually go for a small portion of a dairy-free dessert that will not have a substantial effect on the body. Accordingly, sweet treats are not off-limits for athletes. However, it’s essential to eat them into consideration. After all, athletes are also humans, and they can have cravings for different deserts. 

It’s also crucial for athletes to keep track of their cravings. For instance, if you have intense cravings for a sweet treat almost every night, it must be an indication that your body is not getting enough carbs or calories. Therefore, it is also important to maintain a proper diet with the workout.

You may try to satisfy the craving right at the moment, but it is imperative that you eat properly. Instead of having dessert as an essential part of the diet and taking it throughout the day, you should enjoy it in limited portions.

Most importantly, every dessert can be made healthier. For instance, if you like chocolate chip cookies, then pair it with Greek yogurt, which will add protein to your diet.

There are also other recipes that athletes can try. For example, banana ice cream is a quite popular treat. Bananas provide a good amount of potassium, which is one of the critical nutrients that deplete during sweating. Banana ice cream can be easily made at home by freezing some ripe bananas and blending them with a little soy milk, peanut butter, and cocoa powder.

A nut chocolate brownie is also a great treat to satisfy sweet cravings while getting important nutrients. For instance, if you combine chocolate brownies with walnuts, the treat can be a great source of omega-3 fats, which are well-known for their anti-inflammatory effects. Dates also have potassium, vitamins, and minerals that are quite imperative for the body’s health.

Fresh fruits may sound very simple, but they can be the best sweet treat. Strawberries, watermelon, honeydew melon, pineapple, cherries, raspberries, and other fruits make an ideal sweet and healthy treat. They can always be blended to make protein shakes or proteins. Fresh fruits are also good in making up for the fluids that are lost during exercise because they have high water content.

It’s all about balance

Even athletes can indulge in sweet treats, given that they take in limited amounts while maintaining a healthy diet. There are many sweet options out there, which can always be made healthier. Here is a super easy recipe that's sweet AND healthy. It's the Breakfast of Champions!

Vegan Protein Bowl

VEGAN PROTEIN BOWL

Ingredients

  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • ¼ c protein powder (I like Orgain)
  • ¼ c organic peanut or almond butter (use Sunflower Butter for any nut-allergies)
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 c oat milk (or plant-based milk)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Toppings: fresh fruit and low-sugar granola (I love Gr8nola's Black Coco Chia that contains Activated Charcoal).
  •  

    Directions

    Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Scoop out into bowl and add toppings. Enjoy!

    Serves 4. 

    *This article is reflection of my personal opinion after in-depth research and test-baking.