Golf Tips And Lessons

7 Super Foods for a Super Round

Like any sport, golf requires that your body is properly fueled up to perform at its best. But much of the food available at the course snack bar -- such as hamburgers, potato chips, and sugary sodas -- isn't good for boosting energy and stamina. In fact, they can actually decrease performance levels.

In addition to affecting the physical level of play, food can also impact the mental aspect of the game.

Although the science of food may seem complicated, it all boils down to three simple steps that anyone can follow:

First, it is always better to eat several smaller meals, up to six a day, than it is to eat two or three big meals.

Second, by consuming nutritious foods every few hours, you can keep your metabolism running at its peak. This not only helps to deliver energy when you need it, but also promotes weight loss.

Third, vary the types of foods you eat to ensure a good balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fats. Overdoing any one of these can cause problems with both the physical and mental aspects of golf play.

Golfers usually play their best when they eat a meal an hour or so before tee time. If the meal is consumed two to three hours before tee off, have a snack that contains some carbohydrates and about 400 calories. Avoid snacks with large amounts of sugar, as they can cause a "sugar crash" around the third hole.

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Here are 7 Super Foods For A Super Round:

1. Fruit: Virtually any fruit is a good choice.

2. Bananas: These are especially useful on the golf course, as they deliver essential minerals as well as a good energy boost.

3. Unsalted Nuts: These are a quick source of protein and energy, available in a variety of flavors.

4. Trail Mix with Dried Fruit: Easy to carry, this convenient and tasty snack comes in a variety of mixes.

5. Nutrition Bars: Be careful to choose only those that are truly nutrition bars and not camouflaged candy bars.

6. Vegetable Drinks: These are a good way to replenish several vitamins and minerals while on the course. Avoid those with added salt.

7. Water: An absolute must-have on the course. Hydrating your body is essential to maintaining proper blood sugar levels while protecting you from heat exhaustion on hot days.

While it is important to eat the right foods during play, you should also know which ones to avoid. Alcohol can dehydrate your body and slow down your motor skills. Salty foods can throw off your blood chemistry if not offset with plenty of fresh water.

Sugary foods can give you a sudden boost of energy, but the sugar crash that follows will make you feel drained and perhaps even mentally depressed.

Try packing a couple of healthy snacks to take on the course, and vary them over your next few rounds. Adding a couple of nutrition bars, a couple of bananas, and at least two bottles of water is a great starting point. Keep track of which foods help you achieve the best overall results and make those a staple of your golf bag gear.

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