The guidelines for Basic nutrition, Sport specific nutrition and Sport supplements below, are prepared to inform you about the setup of a nutrition plan according to the latest insights. The food pyramid consists of 3 levels. The bottom level of the pyramid (basic nutrition) is the foundation and is important for everyone, including athletes. When basic nutrition proves to be insufficient for an athlete and supplementation is necessary, the middle level of the pyramid can be relevant to optimize nutrition status and sport performance; sports specific nutrition.The top level provides an understanding for sport supplementation based on the most recent scientific insights.
This document is about the lower level of the Sports-Nutrition-Pyramid and gives insight into basic nutrition. As described, the bottom level forms the foundations on which an athlete can build. Without a good basis, it does not make sense to add specific sports nutrition (middle level) or supplements (upper level). If an athlete, despite a balanced diet, does not receive sufficient nutrients and supplementation, then, the middle level of the pyramid may bring solutions in the form of sport drinks, sports bars, sport gels or protein preparations. These products can be consumed around a training or exertion, and depending on the duration and level of intensity, you can specifically choose between different products (see the sport-specific nutrition document). The top level of the pyramid contains supplements according to the latest scientific insights that may have a beneficial effect.
This document is about the middle layer of the nutrition pyramid. We will explain which supplement(s) can be added to a diet if basic nutrition is not sufficient enough or to enhance optimal nutrition for performance. By Sports Nutrition we mean sports drinks, sports bars, sports gels or protein preparations. They can be taken before, during or after a training or match, depending on the type, intensity and duration of the effort. The timing of sports nutrition can be important. Depending on the type of sport and the intensity, the moment of intake of extra fluid or nutrients can have a major impact on muscle recovery and glycogen stores and on the prevention of dehydration.
This document revolves around the top level of the sports nutrition pyramid and provides an understanding in sport supplementation based on the most recent scientific insights. Nutritional supplements and doping will also be pointed out briefly in this section. Consult a sports dietitian before using a sports supplement, because (s)he is acquainted with/informed about the recent developments concerning these products. A sports dietician can tell you whether a supplement could be appropriate for you and in which doses it can be used safely.