I am going to be completely honest and transparent when I say, I struggle talking nutrition with athletes. Not because I don’t think it is important or that I don’t believe it makes a difference in an athletes performance.
I struggle because:
Everyone is so different.
There are food aversions, based on tastes (picky eaters), and based on inherent or developing allergies (been there, it stinks when you have relied on getting some of your daily protein from peanut butter only to find out that it was the cause of severe eczema…)
There’s different incomes, access to food, family values, and family backgrounds surrounding foods and food groups
There are parents that are super involved in meals and meal prepping, and parents that simply aren’t.
There are so many opinions, variations, contradictions, and disputes about what is most important and should be followed in nutrition. And recommendations are always changing. Some years there’s a ton of emphasis on the importance of one food group (macronutrients, protein, fruits/veggies, low fat, calorie intake, etc.), then the fads change, the stories change.
There is a ton of clinical jargon that goes with nutrition that kids simply do not care about, nor need to know about.
Teenage girls and food is a tough and touchy subject. I can still remember trying to fit into the socially acceptable weight that I probably put the most pressure on myself to maintain, but whether it came from me, the girls around me, or stuff I saw on TV, magazines, social media, etc., it was there, and it was a hard time in my life.
So with all of this said, I want to keep nutrition as simple and as generalized as possible for my girls. I am not going to tell you what you can and cannot eat, all I would like to provide for you are some general guidelines and suggestions.
I would also like to empower you to take the reins on making some food decisions for yourself, and perhaps at least have a little say on what is stocked in your home because you either contributed to the grocery store list or decided to go along with a parent to the store.