An athletic diet is absolutely essential in addition to regular physical activity in aiming for athletic excellence. The right approach to nutrition helps to achieve the best results in sports and keep your body healthy. This kind of a diet is not only suitable for professional athletes: its main rule is balanced and proper nutrition so that your body receives all the necessary vitamins and minerals.
The 5 basic principles of an athletic diet
An athletic diet is quite easy. You do not have to feel hungry all the time and food can be varied and delicious. The basic rules for this type of nutrition are:
- Include all major natural food groups in your diet: vegetables, fruits, nuts (including natural oils), meat/seafood or plant proteins, whole grains and natural dairy products.
- Distribute calories throughout the day correctly. The right scheme is as follows: 25% of the daily calorie intake during breakfast, 50% at lunch and 25% at dinner.
- When following a healthy diet, you should not exclude any macronutrients from your daily meals: the body must receive proteins, fats and carbohydrates.
- Сarbohydrates are the best source of energy. The more you exercise, the more carbohydrates you should include in your diet.
- You need protein to gain muscle mass.
One of the most challenging tasks for the athletes is to reach the right level of the daily protein intake; otherwise the muscle mass may be lost after exercising.
The popular protein shakes that you can buy in sports nutrition stores are unnatural, processed food. As a result they cause heartburn, indigestion and constipation.
The better and healthier option to include into sport diet is natural, easily digestible plant protein sources. One of such great source is the pine nut flakes. 
What are pine nut flakes and why do athletes need them?
When oil is extracted from pine nuts, the dry pressed mass of nuts remains — light flakes that look like oatmeal. It is this mass that is called pine nut flakes. It contains the same nutrients and vitamins as pine nut oil:
- Omega polyunsaturated fatty acids
- Vitamins A, B1, B2, E, PP
- Minerals: iodine, calcium, iron, silicon and others
- Vegetable fiber.
Pine nut flakes are the source of raw, unprocessed plant protein, vitamins, minerals and omega fatty acids that optimize athletic performance, reduce fat mass, and improve general health.
The delicate and pleasant pine nut scent, mild flavor and high amount of easy-to-digest proteins make pine nut flakes one of the most popular supplements to athletic diets.
You can add this product for any type of sports nutrition. In particular, pine nut flakes are a natural source of arginine, also known as l-arginine. Arginine increases endurance, dulls the appetite, accelerates muscle growth, and boosts your immune system. There is no need to buy arginine in the form of a dietary supplement: instead, consume up to 70 gr of pine nut flakes daily.
The additional benefit of pine nut flakes is that being a raw plant food, and containing unsaturated fatty acids it helps to reduce fat mass.
How to include pine nut flakes in your diet
You can use this product as a replacement for pine nuts in any recipe:
- Add it to fresh vegetable salads or cereal
- Sprinkle it on any dessert
- Make the pine nut cereal: add warm milk to the flakes and leave it for 15 minutes. The flakes will absorb the milk and swell. You can add honey or jam to this meal.
- Make a smoothie with any berries and fruits with flakes or add it to a protein shake.
- For exercising: soak 4 tablespoons of pine nut flakes in warm soy milk, add dry fruits and eat it 2 hours before exercising.
 THE POTENTIAL OF PINE NUT AS A COMPONENT OF SPORT NUTRITION — Babich O O , Milent’eva I S , Ivanova S A , Pavsky V A , Kashirskikh E V , Yang Y
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