Authentic voices. Remarkable stories. AOL On Originals showcase the passions that make the world a more interesting place.
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Sports Injury Forum - Michael DeFranco MD with guest -
Rebecca Carl MD Pediatric Sports Medicine Specialist Childrens Memorial ...
Hospital and Ass.Professor Pediatrics, Northwestern University
Tags:Healthy Diet vs Supplements for Child Athletes,child food supplements,child injuries,child sports,Rebecca Carl,sports food supplements,sports Injuries,drmdk
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Healthy Diet vs. Supplements for Child Athletes Michael DeFranco: Maintaining a healthy diet seems to be critical to not only optimizing the athletic performance but also avoiding injuries. What do you tell your kids about how to eat right? Rebecca L. Carl: Yeah. It really depends on the child and why they’re there but a couple of things that I really focus on, one is that I really discourage these supplements in children and adolescents. Most of these kids get plenty of, for instance protein in the diet and there’s no reason to take a commercial supplement to help their diet. They don’t need it to build muscle. Some of the supplements that are made are not tightly regulated and so, there may be things in that supplement that the kids should not be ingesting. So, I really discourage supplements and I encourage kids to think more about their diet for proper nutrition. The other thing is that for bone health, I recommend that family’s be familiar with the optimal doses of vitamin D and calcium for each age group and then I just think it’s really important for kids to get enough calories to compensate for their level of activity. During cross-country season, I see a lot of runners with stress fractures and often, it’s considered they haven’t been running and then they go to 30 miles a week and they’re burning a tremendous amount of calories and they’re just not compensating for that change in their diet. Because of that, the body feels, “Well, I don’t have enough energy, so I’m not going to be keeping the bone healthy.” So, it’s really important for prevention that kids make sure that they’re getting adequate calories. For some of our athletes, we actually refer them to one of the nutritionist that we work with so that they can just review the diet and make sure that everything is okay.