The concession stand at athletic events can be an annoyance for many parents, with its tempting snacks that solicit frequent arm-tugging from children. (“I want that! Can I get that?”) What young athletes and even their parents may not know is that some of these snacks are healthier than others.
Swap unhealthy concession snacks for these more nutritious options.
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Swap Ice Cream for Frozen Fruit Pops
Ice cream is high in saturated fat and sugar, which can slow down an athlete. Fruit pops may be a healthier alternative, especially those made with fresh fruit or yogurt.
Swap Nachos for Crackers
Grains in crackers fuel muscles with carbohydrates. Opt for whole-grain crackers over chips and cheese.
Swap Soda for Flavored Water
For athletes bored with plain old water, flavored water offers a zestier option and will keep them hydrated (unlike carbonated beverages).
Swap Fun Dip for a Granola Bar
Granola bars offer proteins in the forms of nuts and other natural ingredients, whereas Fun Dip offers zero health benefits.
Swap Capri Sun for Chocolate Milk
After a big game or practice, chocolate milk, which contains protein and vitamin D, is a good choice over a sugary drink.
Swap Potato Chips for Pretzels
Unlike potato chips, pretzels can be a good source of fiber for a double-header or a long training session.
Swap Chocolate Chip Cookies for Oatmeal Cookies
Oatmeal raisin cookies have more fiber that helps to aid athletes in proper digestion. Plus, raisins include calcium and vitamin C.
The Bottom Line
Just because a concession stand has a junk food stigma doesn’t mean there aren’t healthier choices. It’s important to be conscious of nutrition in these types of snacks, especially when it can affect athletic performance.