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Cricket is a physically demanding sport. Gone are the days, when the sport just relied on skills. Along with a cricketer’s skillset, physical fitness is of utmost importance. Cricketers need to be energetic on the field and sprint and dive hard to save runs for the side. Cricket requires mental and physical stamina and for that, they need the right amount of energy via food. Nutrition is a critical part of the health and development of the human body and keeps the immune system stronger, lowers the risk of non-communicable diseases, improves longevity, etc. In this blog, we will delve deeper into the nutrition intake and diet plan of cricketers.
Why is a Good Diet necessary for Cricketers?
Cricketers undergo vigorous training and follow a strict fitness regime. A lot of emphases is given to a healthy diet that contains all the nutrients in the right proportion. Let us have a look at the ideal diet chart/diet plan of cricketers.
|On Game Day
How Cricketers’ Diets are decided?
Cricket players’ diets are chosen based on their position on the team, the game site’s geology, age, and BMI. For instance, the diet for cricket players would include a higher fluid content to combat dehydration if the game is being played in a humid climate. However, if the game is being played in a cold environment, their food should be high in potassium and fluids to prevent cramps.
Quite apart from the aforementioned requirements, a diet for cricketers often consists of a base of complete grains, cereals, pulses, dairy products, and lean protein sources like meat. This base is nutrient-rich.
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Off-Season Diet for Cricketers
Off-season nutrient requirements must be carefully considered, just as the diet during practice and the diet on game day is crucial. So, off-season nutrition receives special attention in the diet chart for cricket players. The body and mind enter a rehabilitation and resting phase once the players have finished their demanding training schedules and match season. The daily food needs decrease as exercise volume and intensity decrease throughout this phase.
By cutting calories, maintain a balanced diet. Avoid processed, sugary, and junk food because they might hasten weight gain, which in turn affects performance. During the off-season for cricket, return to your regular three-meal schedule. Drinking water and other fluids is very important.
Diet on Game Day
Cricket players frequently struggle with the problem of not knowing what they will do until 20 minutes before a game. So, it is best to be ready for both scenarios: rushing on the pitch and waiting on the bench for your turn to bat.
Avoid eating fat or oil with your early meal if you don’t want to be drowsy on the pitch. You can increase your intake of carbohydrates by including protein-rich foods like omelets (with veggies), chicken salads, and fresh fruit juices.
Dried fruits can also be eaten in moderation in addition to fresh fruits because they are a fantastic supply of carbs and are also a great source of micronutrients like potassium, manganese, iron, and vitamins.
But, because dried fruits are high in fiber and you don’t want to attend a game with a bloated stomach, you may want to moderate your intake of them before a game.
To meet their protein needs, vegan cricketers can choose a vegetable salad with soy chunks and paneer cubes.
Have a healthy lunch at least three to four hours before the game to give your body time to digest it.
Low-fat milk, sweet potatoes, veggie slides, toast, muesli, fruits, and dry fruits like cashews, macadamias, prunes, and almonds are additional possibilities for your morning meal on game days.
Diet During Game Day
The most number of carbs should be consumed by cricket players, whether it be in the form of sports drinks, wraps and salads with lean protein, sandwiches, toast, fruits, or even a cup of tea or coffee (in regulated amounts as excess consumption might lead to an upset stomach).
Cricket players chewing gum on the pitch is another behavior you may have observed on your TV screens. They get the extra ounce of energy they need to finish the game by chewing gum, which is a good source of sugar.
Cricketers may use chewing gum to regain some of their lost energy, but it can also be used as a stress reliever at times to quiet their fidgeting nerves.
Overall, a balanced diet containing all the nutrients in the right proportion is very necessary. On match days, carbs, sugar, and other fluids must be consumed. On other days, protein must be consumed for gaining muscle strength.
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