While a wide variety of foods can and should make up a high-performance diet, a key nutrient to incorporate to support optimal health is fibre. Fibre plays an important role in optimising gut health, which we know can have a significant influence on other areas of health including mental health and the body’s immune defence.
Fibre can be found in fruit, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. Making one or two slightly healthier choices in how you fill your plate each day may help to create more sustainable shifts and encourage long-term change in nutrition habits, rather than feeling like you need to eat ‘perfectly’, all the time. Challenge yourself to find ways to make meals and snacks higher in fibre by using some of the suggestions below:
It is important to note that while fibre is a fundamental nutrient for health, if consumed too close to training and/or competition, it may lead to gastrointestinal symptoms in some athletes. Therefore, it is worth trialling different foods and timings around your training sessions to see what works best for you. For some athletes, focusing high fibre foods in meals and snacks away from training may be best to avoid undesirable symptoms that may impact training quality.