As part of our growing list of content here at LIJSoccer.com we post a weekly feature discussing the importance of good nutrition, not only in terms of how it helps your performance, but how it also contributes to a healthy lifestyle. Want to know what you should eat before a game? After? In the offseason? What about a plan for the right way to eat during those long tournament weekends when you may only have an hour between games?
Be sure to check back each week as our LIJSoccer nutrition expert, Cristina Rivera of Nutrition in Motion gives you all those answers and more. Each week, Cristina will offer a fun nutritional fact that can help you get a better understanding of healthy eating, and twice a month will post more detailed features regarding the best way to lay out a proper nutrition plan for young athletes.
This week’s fun nutritional fact talks about the importance of copper-rich foods and their role in recovery from muscle and ligament injuries.
Does a muscle or ligament injury have you sidelined? To speed up recovery time, add copper rich foods like beans and seeds into your diet. This mineral works in conjunction with vitamin C to strengthen and repair connective tissue. Here is a list of our favorite ways to eat these nutrient loaded foods:
• Add 1 cup of chick peas or kidney beans to a salad
• Sprinkle oatmeal or yogurt with 2 Tbsp flax seeds
• Throw 1/4 cup of pumpkin or sunflower seeds into your favorite trail mix for a quick snack
• Add 1 cup of lentil soup to a meal on a cold day
• Mix 1/2 cup black beans with brown rice for a great side dish
Cristina Rivera is the President of Nutrition in Motion PC, a registered dietician, and a Board Certified Sports Nutritionist. Her clinical work at the NYU Hospital of Joint Diseases, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and Bellevue Hospital has given her a diverse and skilled background in medical nutrition therapy. As a certified specialist is sports dietetics, Cristina has worked with numerous running and triathlon teams to design specific meal plans for athletes during training and on race days. She has also served as a consulting sports nutritionist for the NYU athletic department and currently consults for the Coca-Cola company. Cristina has been featured in Shape, Women’s Running magazine, Women’s Day, and on ESPN.com.