- Americans generally do not adhere to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's "Food Pyramid" recommendation
- in the average American household, almost 70% of meals are prepared at home, but this means that 30% of what Americans eat is prepared by someone else and without proper dietary needs in mind
- the average American diet seems to have improved in recent years, but it still has a long way to go before it can be considered properly nutritious (Proper Nutrition with CrossFit: Part I, an Introduction)
(If you are interested in reading more about what the typical American diet looks like, you can check out Part I of our Nuitrition series - Proper Nutrition with CrossFit: Part I, an Introduction – where we discuss some American diet trends as reported by the Wall Street Journal and provide links to additional information).
Thankfully, just because the typical American diet can be lacking in nutrition, this does not mean that CrossFit athletes are stuck matching this diet themselves. You have options and you have resources!
Remember, as a CrossFit athelete, it is important to keep these two main points in mind:
- You should be eating “real” food, and
- You should not obsess over following a “magic diet” but rather focus on incorporating proper nutrition into your lifestyle
Laura Dolson's Low-Carb Food Pyramid - this is more along the lines of what we should be eating!
Now that we have these points in the forefront of our brains, let’s take a quick look at the Crossfit-recommended diet. Straight from CrossFit’s website itself, here’s what a CrossFit athlete’s diet should ideally look like:
- “Protein should be lean and varied and account for about 30% of your total caloric load.
- Carbohydrates should be predominantly low-glycemic and account for about 40% of your total caloric load.
- Fat should be predominantly monounsaturated and account for about 30% of your total caloric load.
- Calories should be set at between .7 and 1.0 grams of protein per pound of lean body mass depending on your activity level. The .7 figure is for moderate daily workout loads and the 1.0 figure is for the hardcore athlete." (Crossfit.com – “Nutrition”)
We have all probably read this information from CrossFit.com a hundred times, so to make it even simpler, here are the basic guidelines for CrossFit’s “dietary prescription.” Base your diet on:
- garden vegetables (focusing specifically on greens whenever possible)
- lean meats
- nuts and seeds
- very little starch
- no sugar at all (Crossfit.com – “Nutrition”)
Another tip Crossfit’s website recommends is shopping around the edges of your grocery store as much as you are able. Avoid boxed and non-perishable goods, because there is a reason those items are able to be stored in a box for long amounts of time! You don’t want to put those things into your body. Spend your dollars on items from the outside of the grocery store – mainly the produce and meat sections – and you’ll be well on your way to a healthy diet, long before you even hit the kitchen!
Needless to say, proper nutrition is a very important topic for athletes of all types, so check back soon as we continue to delve into this topic! We have only begun to scratch the surface of proper CrossFit nutrition here on Box Stalker.
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