Avocados & Sports Nutrition
Whether you exercise regularly or you’re a serious competitor, you need optimal nutrition to fuel your body during workouts and events. A diet containing carbohydrates, lean proteins and good fats is essential to your performance. Fresh California Avocados provide vital nutrients and phytochemicals. There are 13 vitamins that the body absolutely needs: vitamins A, C, D, E, K and the B vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, biotin, vitamin B-6, vitamin B-12 and folate).
California Avocados are naturally sodium-free and cholesterol free and act as a nutrient booster by enabling the body to absorb more fat-soluble nutrients, such as alpha- and beta-carotene and lutein, in foods that are eaten with the fruit. Fats are also important for athletes as they provide a concentrated source of energy for the body, making them an essential component in diets for anyone who is physically active.
The Choice of an Olympic Gold Medalist
Four-time Olympic gold medalist in swimming, Lenny Krayzelburg says of California Avocados, “For an athlete, the food you eat is your fuel to perform… For fats, [when I was competing] I loved to eat California Avocados because of their poly and monounsaturated fat content and because they contribute nearly 20 vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients, which helped give me energy and feel satisfied at meal time. Not to mention that avocados taste delicious.”
Try this Training Meal
All of the performance nutrition essentials into one delicious dish!
- Brown Rice: Carbs help fuel muscles and aid in recovery post-exercise.
- Chicken: Lean protein helps to repair and rebuild muscle proteins that are broken down and used as fuel during exercise.
- Good Fats: California Avocados provide primary mono and polyunsaturated fats, which are essential for both athletes and non-athletes, and are considered a healthy substitute when eaten in place of foods rich in saturated fat.
Lenny Krayzelburg's Love of California Avocados
Here is a Q&A with four-time Olympic gold medalist in swimming, Lenny Krayzelburg, where he discusses his affinity for fresh California Avocados.
1. You grew up in Southern California, did you always like California Avocados?
Absolutely, as a California guy, I grew up on avocados! I think local California Avocados are especially creamy and delicious. I would add them to my sandwiches, top off salads and, of course, munch on chips and guacamole.
2. Your father was a chef while you were growing up; how did he incorporate Avocados into your meals?
My dad was always great in the kitchen and had a real passion for cooking. He would come up with the most wonderful meals, all the while keeping in mind my nutritional needs for my training. California Avocados figured in prominently in his dishes. As a snack he would actually just slice an avocado and a tomato and drizzle them with a bit of olive oil and top it all off with fresh black pepper. For dinner, he would create these great salsas with avocados to finish off chicken and fish dishes. The avocado always added a creamy texture to the meal that made you feel like you were eating something really decadent.
3. How important is an athlete's diet while training for a competition?
Extremely important! For an athlete, the food you eat is your fuel to perform. In swimming, what you eat can mean the difference between even one hundredth of a second. While that's less than a blink of an eye, the science of sports nutrition can separate the medalists from the hopefuls!
4. As a world-class athlete, what did your training diet consist of?
When I was competing I consumed a diet rich in lean protein, carbohydrates and fats. The carbohydrates helped fuel my muscles and the lean protein helped repair and rebuild muscle that had been broken down during training. For fats, I loved to eat California Avocados because of their poly and monounsaturated fat content and because they contribute nearly 20 vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients, which helped give me energy and feel satisfied at meal time. Not to mention that avocados taste delicious!
5. Do you still eat California Avocados now that you are retired?
Even though I don't swim competitively anymore, I continue to eat healthily and incorporate California Avocados into my diet because of the unsaturated fat they contain and because I love the taste! I'll eat them as part of a salsa on grilled fish, incorporate them into a salad or even top off an omelet with a couple of slices.