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How to Eat Your Way to Peak Performance

How Nutrition Affects Athletic Performance

We’ve all heard the saying, “you are what you eat” — and it may ring true for athletes who have “peak performance” as an athletic goal. When it comes to nutrition, here are ways to use food as fuel for optimal performance in your game.

Eat These Foods for Muscle Building

How well your muscles function can impact the way you play your game. Here are some foods that are good for building muscle so you can be at your best!


Amino acids, found in proteins, help your body repair and grow tissue, including your muscles. These protein-rich foods can help athletes gain more muscle and improve muscle strength:

  • Lean cuts of beef and pork
  • Chicken
  • Turkey breast
  • Beans and legumes (lentils, chickpeas, and kidney beans)
  • Dairy (milk, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt)
  • Starchy vegetables (broccoli, green peas, carrots)
  • Fish (salmon, tuna)
  • Eggs


When most people hear the word carbohydrates, they often think they should stay away from them. However, eating the right kinds of carbs can help muscle growth and give you energy. After consuming carbs, a portion is converted into glycogen that is then stored in your muscles. This is beneficial for athletes who want to power up their workouts and performance. Here are some excellent carbohydrates to try:

  • Vegetables (Brussels sprouts, beets)
  • Whole grains (cereal, pasta, and bread)
  • Fruits (apples, bananas, blueberries)
  • Brown rice
  • Oats

When it comes to athletic performance, avoid processed, high-fat foods as well as alcohol and sugary snacks and beverages.

Keep Your H20 Handy

Whether it's game day or you’re training, it’s critical to avoid dehydration. Keeping your water bottle handy can help prevent these adverse effects:

  • A rise in core temperature
  • Muscle cramps
  • Increased heart rate
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue

It’s also important to keep in mind that when you sweat, you lose water. That reduces body weight, which can decrease performance.

Dallas and Fort Worth Sports Medicine

While nutrition is part of peak performance, so is preventing and treating injuries. From sports injury prevention to treatment, Methodist Sports Medicine can help you perform at your best. See the full list of services we offer or contact us to make an appointment!