There is No Perfect Diet

Think of all the delicious foods you avoid because they are “too high”…in calories, fat, sugar or salt. There truly is no “perfect” diet but there are a lot of nutrients that athletes and others miss out on because they are trying to be “healthy”. Iron and calcium are two nutrients that many female athletes don’t get enough, especially if they avoid red meat and dairy products (milk, cheese). In addition to iron, red meat supplies protein, zinc and B vitamins. Dairy foods are a rich source of calcium, are often fortified with Vitamin D, and also provide [protein, magnesium, riboflavin]. Consider this: a small cheeseburger provides 300 calories, 15 gram of protein, 8% of daily calcium and 15% of daily iron. While it’s not “perfect”, if eaten with a piece of fruit or baby carrots, the nutrition impact is significant.