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Fatty foods are known to slow down the rate of gastric emptying and therefore should be avoided

There is a significant amount of research to show that fifa 15 coins a high carbohydrate meal eaten 3–4h before exercise can improve performance. In one study, athletes were either given no carbo- hydrate, a meal containing 300 g of carbohydrate 3 h before exercise, no carbohydrate before exercise but an 8% carbohydrate drink during exercise (giving a total of 175 g carbohydrate), or a combination of carbohydrate 3 h before exercise and during exercise. The average time to exhaustion at 70% V· O2 max was 44% greater than the control (no carbohydrate) when carbohydrate was given before and during exercise, 32% greater than the control when car-bohydrate was given during exercise, and 18% greater when carbohydrate was given 3 h before exercise. In two other studies, which purely examined the effects of ingesting carbo- hydrates 4 h before exercise, performance was improved by between 15 and 22% compared with placebo. The overall conclusion from these and other studies is that a pre-exercise meal high in carbohydrates extends time to fatigue and improves total work done. The timing of the meals given in these studies (i.e. 4 h before exercise) typically coincides with the time of the pre-match meal in football.

Soccer players should leave at least a 3-h interval between a full meal and competition in order to minimize gastrointestinal problems such as nausea and a feeling of fullness. It is recommended that the stomach should be reasonably empty at the time of the match since the digestion and absorption of food will compete with the muscles for a good blood supply. Fatty foods are known to slow down the rate of gastric emptying and therefore should be avoided. The meal should be high in carbohydrates, preferably complex carbohydrates such as bread, cereals, pasta, rice, potatoes, fruits and vegetables. The actual amount of calories consumed will vary between individuals and how much they had eaten previously. Proteins are acceptable to eat as long as they are not fatty proteins,that is, meat high in fats or con- taining fatty sauces, or fatty cheeses. This meal (and accompanying drinks) should contain about 4 g kg-1 body weight of carbohydrate; for a 70-kg soccer player this represents an intake of 280 g of carbohydrate. The accompanying drink could be high in carbohydrates, but not in the form of fructose.

Some players feel incapable of eating much (or anything) in the hours before a competi- tive game. This is quite understandable in the light of nervous tension in the build up to the match. Under such circumstances, the player would be advised to at least drink some high- carbohydrate drinks and even eat a small snack with the rest of the players. In addition, fre- quent drinking of small volumes of a carbohydrate drink and eating some fruit in the 3– 4h build up should help. It is inadvisable not to eat or drink anything before a match.

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