Date: June 20, 2019

Periods of rain. Wind north 30 km/h gusting to 50. High 21. UV index 3 or moderate.


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Nutrition & Healthy Living Links

At Play

At School

At Work

Food Allergies

Programs & Resources

Nutrition Fact Sheets

Shopping & Cooking

Student Nutrition Program

Nutrition at All Ages & Stages

At Play

This page was reviewed or revised on Thursday, August 27, 2015 10:06 AM

Sports and Recreation

When you play a sport, you always make sure you have the right equipment, like a glove for baseball, cleats for soccer and skates for hockey. Without it, you couldn't play the game very well. But how do you help your game from the inside out? The right foods and drinks can help you be a better athlete.

Two Boys with baseball gloves

Covering the Bases

Everyone, including athletes, needs to eat a variety of healthy foods:

  • Protein: found in meat, poultry, fish, eggs, beans, nuts and dairy foods
  • Carbohydrates: fruits, vegetables and whole grains are the best sources
  • Vitamins: found in fruit and vegetables
  • Minerals: calcium (found in dairy products)
  • Iron: found in meat and alternatives
  • Fat: found in meat, cheese, nuts and oils

How much food you need depends on your age, gender and the amount of time you spend being active or training for your sport. Attending a soccer practice can be intense or a light workout, depending on a variety of factors. Do you practice two hours a week or 12? That will make a difference in the amount of food you need to be healthy and stay active.

Don't Forget the Water

Athletes need to drink water before, during and after exercise. Don't wait until you are thirsty. When people sweat, they lose water through their skin. Sweating cools the body down, but if you lose too much water through sweating, you could become dehydrated. If you are dehydrated you won't feel well or perform well. Serious dehydration can make you sick enough that you may need to go to the hospital for treatment. 

Water is the best choice. Fruit juice mixed with water is another refreshing drink. Avoid sugar-sweetened drinks, especially those with caffeine. A sports drink should be only used once in a while, but remember these drinks have added sugar. A sports drink is ok if you are exercising vigorously for more than an hour or in very hot weather.

For Parents and Coaches

Parents and coaches are important role models for children and youth. The popularity of sports in our community provides a great opportunity for parents and coaches to encourage the importance of healthy eating in addition to physical activity. Sport teams promote physical activity, but may not always offer healthy food choices. By offering healthy food choices, players can play at their best!  

For information on sports nutrition visit Coaching Association of Canada.

Recreational Facilities

Recreational facilities are often the cornerstone of many communities. They are home to some of the largest populations of youth outside of the school setting as well as gathering places for parents and older adults. Recreation facilities already play a vital role in keeping Lambton County residents healthy by providing safe, public spaces for physical activity. When healthy food options are also available at these facilities, it can have a strong impact on the health of the community.

Making the Case for Healthy Choices at Recreation Centres

This video encourages people to pause and think differently about offering unhealthy food at school and at community sports events. 

Lambton Public Health can help you make the healthy choice the easy choice at recreation centres.
Contact us for information about:

  • Consumer surveys
  • Healthier canteen and vending suggestions
  • Promotional and advertising ideas.

Links | Resources

Click here for the following fact sheets:

  • Benefits of a Healthy Food Choices Policy
  • Healthy Eating Step by Step
  • Healthy Snack Checklist
  • Letter to Parents
  • Sample Healthy Food Choices Policy