6 Foods Soccer Players Should Avoid (+ What to Eat Instead)

Updated on 
March 19, 2022

There are very few things I regret doing in the past throughout my soccer career.

One of them is binge-eating and overconsuming sweets with fast food. That's why I compiled this article of 6 foods that soccer players should avoid!

Let's dive right in!

1. Fast food

If you want to improve your diet as a soccer player, you should avoid eating fast food. It is proven that fast food consumption has negative effects on your body.

It is also not a secret that fast food doesn't provide any helpful nutrients and contains various substances that are generally unhealthy. It is high in sugar and salt and it can have a negative impact on your health if overconsumed. You can see all short-term and long-term effects here.

Eating fast food once a month probably won't do you harm - but if you eat fast food more than once / twice a week, you might want to reconsider your choices.

At the end of the day, you are what you eat.

2. Candy & sweets

There is nothing wrong with eating candy very occasionally. Even fitness role models such as The Rock is known for including sweets in their diet.

What's important though - is that 95% of your time you keep your diet clean.

Same as with fast food, overconsumption of candy can have very negative effects on your body as it can provide you with large amounts of unhealthy substances, such as sugars and fats.

3. White sugar

White sugar is closely related to eating candy and sweets. On top of that, white sugar can literally make you an addict.

Consumption of white sugar for you as a soccer player makes literally no sense. And if you think that white sugar gives you the energy - you are far from the truth. You need to consume carbs from foods such as pasta in order to have sustainable energy even for the soccer game.

Suggestion: I actually wrote a guide on pre-game nutrition, check it out!

Nowadays, sugar is added to almost every food. That's why companies such as Mcdonald's add sugar to their hamburgers - to make them more addictive. Welcome to the dark side of the food industry.

Take this as another dose of motivation for you to stop consuming it.

4. Fried foods

Fried foods such as bacon or fries are not the best option to go for as a soccer player. While it can taste really good, it has very few nutrients that you need for optimal performance.

Overconsumption can make you feel filled, but the energy levels will drop significantly once the digestion process kicks off.

Replace fried foods with rice, vegetables, and meat - and you will improve your diet drastically.

5. White bread

White bread usually contains highly processed four with additives, that are unhealthy for you.

Your body will basically digest it faster - which can lead to a spike of sugar in the blood.

Just get rid of it.

6. Sugary cereal

No matter what you heard on TV and in advertisements, cereals are usually filled with additives and loads of sugar. And I mean large doses of sugar which is not good for you.

So if you want to consume something that will fuel your body with loads of nutrients and energy, replace cereals with oatmeal and pieces of banana.

Drinks to avoid as a soccer player

Since I only covered foods, here are a few drinks you should definitely avoid as a soccer player:

  • Soda
  • Coca cola
  • Diet soda
  • Energy drink
  • Coffee

So there you go. It's pretty much straightforward what to drink and what not to drink. I still believe clean water is the best way to hydrate your body - especially before the game.

With that saying, I created a guide on what are the best drinks to have before the soccer game. Check it out!

Can a soccer player eat fries

Fries, and fried food generally, are not recommended for soccer players due to lack of nutrition. Overconsumption of fried foods might lead to gaining too much weight, obesity, and heart diseases. While occasional consumption of fries and fried foods won't do harm, it's better to stick with a clean diet.

I am guilty of eating too much-fried food. You see, if there is one thing I could change on my diet, it would be definitely this.

Can a soccer player eat pizza?

Okey okey.. so now you got rid of half of your fridge, and now you are getting worried that you have to throw away that tasty pizza as well?

Well, let's have a look at pizza. Can a soccer player eat pizza?

Occasional consumption of pizza is completely fine for soccer players. In fact, some recipes are considered to be a healthy option as it contains loads of nutrients and vegetables. However, it’s commonly labeled unhealthy, as it can be high in calories, sodium, and carbs so it is not recommended.

Do your own due diligence. Frozen pizza and fast food pizza probably won't do much of a good, as opposed to some recipe for making pizza at home.

Conclusion: what to eat instead

So there you go, these were just a couple of foods that you should avoid as a soccer player. You see, I still believe that you should enjoy your life and occasionally have tasty fried food, candy, and all that stuff.

But the danger comes when you add these foods to your daily diet.

Trust me, instant gratification is not worth feeling terribly for the rest of your day.

Instead, replace the foods with healthy, nutrient-rich foods such as:

  • Chicken soup
  • Pasta
  • Oatmeal
  • Rice with chicken
  • Vegatables and fruit
  • Clean water

You see, most of the players overthink the diet. But really, all you gotta need to do is to get rid of the foods mentioned in this article and add more healthy options. You will see that you will feel amazing after it.

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Tom Lindeman
Ball Athlete project
Hey! My name is Tom and I created this blog in order to help people wherever they are in their sport journey. Inspirational posts, guides, reviews and much more! Read about the project here.
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