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John Bradley 10/20/2010 Intro. Athletic Training Prof. Johnson My Daily Diet For the past week I have kept a record of everything I have consumed including food and drinks. I have done this to asses what kind of foods I eat and how much nutrition I am getting from my daily diet.
I find it very important to know what my body is taking in and how it will affect me and my daily routine. The foods we eat play a big role in performance in class, the workplace, sports and in everything else in life. We can not expect to get the most out of our body while feeding it the wrong things and not receiving the right nutrition.
In my week of researching myself and my eating habits I was pretty surprised at my findings and just how big of a role my diet plays in my active lifestyle.
As a college student and athlete I lead a very demanding lifestyle that places a lot of mental and physical stress on my body. With this kind of lifestyle it is mandatory to always be running at the top of my game everyday whether it be simply taking notes during lecture or taking out a running back during football practice. To perform at my full potential a few important things are required.
These very beneficial things are; at least eight or nine hours of sleep, the right attitude, self motivation, and of course my diet. While my current diet is not absolutely horrible, it is definitely not the kind of diet a student athlete should have to be at the top of their game. I have quite a few weaknesses in my diet that I plan to solve by either cutting certain foods outs or greatly limiting their intake. I was shocked to find out just how many of my calories come from fat and unsaturated fat. In many of my meals the percentage of calories from fat came pretty close to fifty percent which is completely unacceptable.
The recommended amount is somewhere between twenty to thirty percent of my diet so I am pretty far from that amount which is not good at all. One more thing I found to be pretty scary was how much bad cholesterol I take in. Too much cholesterol can be a horrible thing since I definitely do not want clogged up arteries, now or later on in life. A factor that is in my advantage is how much physical activity my week consists of. I workout with weights three to four times a week and do plenty of cardio during football practice which helps burn off a lot of what I eat.
This still does not justify my diet because with less fat and cholesterol intake I will have less wasted energy and can focus more on building my body up in a healthy manner. While my diet is far from perfect I do thinks there is quite a few things that I eat that definitely do help my body and keep it running effective enough. I drink plenty of water throughout the day, in fact I usually drink something close to one hundred ounces everyday but I did not include this in my food log since most of it is sweated out in football practice or while working out on my own. I also found that my protein intake is also pretty sufficient.
I have a good amount of protein with every meal from breakfast through dinner. This is mandatory because of all the wear and tear I put on my body and it aids in muscle recovery so I can perform to my fullest. While too much protein can be harmful to the kidneys I believe most of the protein in my diet is utilized and any extra is flushed away safely because of all the water I consume. While my diet is still far from perfect I know that I still get a lot out of it. To make my diet better not only do I need to remove such factors such as excessive fat or sugar, but I also need to add certain things to it.
In my research I found that I definitely do not eat nearly enough fruits and vegetables daily to give my body enough vitamins and minerals. This is partly because my main food source is the school’s cafeteria selection which does not always give the best selection. What I need to do is take advantage of every opportunity I do get to eat these beneficial foods. If I can find a way to get more fruits and vegetables in my diet I believe it will help a lot in balancing out my diet. While my current diet has not proved to be too much of a health problem for me right now I can see where it could be a big problem later on in my life.
Right now I am very active physically and use a lot of calories for energy to get me through the day. While this proves true for me right now I know that later on in life I will not be as physically active since. It will be very hard to keep the same level of physical activity after college when I am working a full time job or even raising a family. So to stay healthy later on in life it is mandatory that I start healthy eating habits now so I can carry them with me in my older age. This research really opened my eyes and has allowed to me to pinpoint out exactly what I need to change and what I need to keep the same.
So many people live their lives day in and day out thinking their diets will never catch up to them and that it does not have a huge effect on how they perform on a daily basis. I myself was one of these people until just recently, I feel now that my eyes have been opened and I know just how important it is to lead a healthy lifestyle not just with physical activity but with what I put into my body as well. Starting immediately there will be a big change in my diet and I will strive everyday to make my diet healthier and not just eat whatever I feel like eating.