Dr. Gray's Straight Talk

Honest and blunt healthcare discussion and advice.

Nutrition and Sports Endurance

Posted by Dr. Gray on Friday, July 24, 2009

Article by: Dr. Josh Sonsiadek

Many individuals prepare for their particular sports by selecting the coolest uniform, buying the fanciest pair of cleats, or benching 350. True, these are factors that can get you psyched to play. However, most individuals overlook a factor which is much more important. That factor is nutrition. The proper nutrition will provide the body with the energy it needs during and after exercise.

To understand what nutrients are needed the most, we must take a look at which tissues of the body will need the greatest support when it comes to sports endurance. The tissues that first come to mind are the tissues of the musculoskeletal system: (1) Bone, (2) Muscles, (3) Tendons, (4) Ligaments, (5) Cartilage, and (6) Joints.

Our bodies consist of three different types of joints: fibrous, cartilaginous, and synovial. The joints are categorized by its structure and the way it moves. Synovial joints include those that are involved with the greatest amount of motion, such as the shoulder, hip, knee, ankle, elbow, wrist, and knuckles. These joints contain a lubricating substance known as synovial fluid. These joints joints have smooth cartilage at the ends of connecting bones. Strenuous sport activity and repetitive motion can damage the structure of cartilage and synovial fluid, which results in pain and loss of mobility.

Most people are very informed on the importance of getting enough calcium to keep bones healthy, but the connective tissues also require nutrients; especially in cases when activity levels are high. As is the case in sports endurance.

Endurance athletes require nutrients which will not only focus on repair of the joint but also focus on maitaining the strength and integrity of them as well. Some of the main nutrients utilized in repair and maintenance of the connective tissues is Vitamin E, Vitamin B-12, Manganese, Vitamin C, Arachidonic Acid, Calcium, Vitamin A, and Magnesium. This sounds like a sea of things that we must have in order to have proper connective tissue strength. Most individuals make the mistake of going to the local healthfood store and looking for a multi-vitamin or buying individual tablets of these particular supplements. The key to nutrition is that the body likes when we put things in it that are easily utilized. When we take pure forms of Vitamins our body is not use to it, and will most likely excrete it. Our body likes it when we take in sources of nutrients from our food sources. The problem with the latter is that most of our food sources are so deficient in nutrition due to lack of nutrients in the soil, or the use of growth hormones in our meat. The best way to approach this issue is by consuming products from what are referred to as whole food sources.

Whole food sources are nutrients that have not been tampered with in any way. They are an organic nutrient which contains no pesticides or growth hormones. The number one benefit is that it contains the most viable and most absorbable forms of nutrients so the body can take these nutrients and use them to maintain or repair damaged tissues in a very efficient manner. This will allow the body its best defense against the stress and strain of repetitive injuries which are often seen in endurance athletes.

For further questions on how to locate whole food sources or to understand the importance of nutrition, you can reach Dr. Josh at Gray Chiropractic, by email  josh_sonsiadek@yahoo.com or contact at (816) 795-1121.


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