Food Guide for Soccer: Tips and Recipes from the Pros
Co-authored by a leading sports nutritionist and MomsTeam expert, Nancy Clark, and award-winning author, Gloria Averbuch, Food Guide for Soccer: Tips & Recipes from the Pros is a comprehensive, yet easy-to-read guide that addresses the nutrition questions and concerns, not just of soccer players, but athletes of all ages and abilities. The book also includes 70 recipes and numerous food tips from professional soccer players with Women's Professional Soccer.
The book provides eating tips for before, during and after a practice or a game. In addition there are sections on how to bulk up or to get lean and lighter, like a professional soccer player might do.
"It's a combination of insightful and sensible nutrition from players from different cultures," Averbuch said.
WPS has a large international base, as players hail from all over the globe, including Europe, South America, Australia and Canada. Some of the players added their own cultural twist to some traditional favorites like hamburgers or fried rice.
"It's fun to see what Natasha Kai eats in Hawaii and what Marta eats from Brazil," Averbuch said. "If someone is a professional athlete and is eating this, then you know it's good for you, too."
One of the more surprising foods that is mentioned throughout the book is chocolate.
Yael Averbuch of Sky Blue FC -- Gloria's daughter -- takes chocolate milk to replenish her muscles after every practice.
"Chocolate milk is a pleasing taste and you certainly want to drink what is better for you so you get an instant hit from the sweet chocolate and you get the protein and the specialty ingredients that are found to be in milk that are helpful," Gloria Averbuch said.
Yael also enjoys taking dark chocolate and pairing it with peanut butter for a high energy snack, which is exciting for anyone who has a bit of a sweet tooth.
Other recipes from popular soccer stars and WPS teams include Brandi Chastain's avocado salad, Abby Wambach's date bars, Kristine Lilly's chicken with mushrooms & roasted potatoes and Marta's signature lasagna.
Three key points
Averbuch hopes that readers will take away the three major principles from the book:
- A soccer players needs to eat sensibly and sufficiently to support their activity and lifestyle as a young and growing person;
- Eating is for fuel and is pleasurable. It's an activity the athlete can share with family and teammates and she shouldn't beat herself up over eating, because everyone needs to eat; and
- It is important to understand that the principles of good nutrition involve whole foods, not fads.
"My co-author Nancy (Clark) is really big on getting your nutrients from whole foods as opposed to what she calls engineered foods such as gels and energy bars; they are fine to supplement, but not all the time," Averbauch said. "A lot people think you can drink protein drinks or drink powders or a shake or a bar but it's not really what we want people to learn. We want them to learn a good diet from whole foods, foods that you find in their original form."
Not just for soccer players
Although the tips come from a soccer perspective, Averbuch says that their book is for anyone active in youth sports or with an active lifestyle. She hopes the book teaches young athletes good eating habits early so they can achieve their highest potential.
"It's an education for the sport and for the activity, but it's also an education about life. How do young people prepare themselves, you do it by practice."
Averbuch has previously written 12 books on sports, soccer, health and fitness. Her co-author, Nancy Clark
MS RD, is a Board Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics, with a
private practice at Healthworks in Chestnut Hill, Mass. She is also the
nutrition consultant for the Boston Breakers of WPS, and MomsTeam's
Posted November 23, 2011
Adapted from a review which originally appeared on www.active.com. Reprinted with permission of the authors.