Scott Sehnert is the Dallas Cowboys' director of sports performance. Formerly the sports dietitian at Auburn University for seven years, Sehnert has a Bachelors in Dietetics from Ball State and two Masters degrees, one in Nutritional Sciences from University of Kentucky and one in Kinesiology from Michigan State University. He is a Registered Dietitian and Board Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics as well as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. Sehnert previously interned with the U.S. Speed Skating Team and the University of Utah Sports Nutrition Program and worked as the coordinator of sports and cardiovascular nutrition program at Michigan State.
Eating carbohydrates, such as a small snack a few hours before bed, can help promote sleep by increasing serotonin levels. Cherry juice or cherries can also be a good source of melatonin, which has been known to help with the onset of sleep. Transcript: "So when I think of foods that can potentially help with sleep, I think about carbohydrates because carbohydrates can increase serotonin levels. Serotonin is known to help increase the onset of sleep. It also helps with mood and improving calmness. And so serotonin and again, carbohydrates help do that. And so a carbohydrate type food, not a large meal, a couple of hours before bed can help do that. And then melatonin, a lot of people supplement with melatonin, which can be helpful at times and maybe not always a great choice to supplement with melatonin. But cherry juice and cherries, in general, are high and-- or have a good source of melatonin, which can, again, help increase the onset of sleep. And so those are the two things that I would think about a couple of hours before bedtime to help improve sleep."
Calories, carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and caffeine are all supplements that can help with energy. Transcript: "What nutrients are supplements can help with energy. Well, overall energy for life is going to come from Cal and so you're going to get those calories by consuming Foods. Suppose you can do that as well from supplements that provide carbohydrates proteins fats but that's your main source of energy or this calories beyond that. When we're talking about performance if we're talking about high intensity type activity, things that require a lot of your energy 80 90 % of your your energy, you're going to use carbohydrates for fuel and so you need those carbohydrates into getting, get those from foods, you can get those from different types of supplements. People will think about stimulants as a source of energy. It's a little bit of a false Source, it will stimulate your brain, your central nervous system for sure. And and give you a sense of energy which can be helpful in certain situations and can be harmful and certain sub shoot certain situations. So you need to be aware of how you are going to utilize that. But calories carbs caffeine perhaps, our sources of energy, depending upon the type of work, you're about to do."
Recovery meals and nutrition will depend on what you're recovering from, but should typically include protein, carbohydrates, fruits and vegetables, and cherry juice to decrease inflammation. Transcript: "So when it comes to recovery meals and nutrition, that are recommended really depends on what you're recovering from if it's dealing with team sport, high intensity. Resistive type training then recovery needs to include protein because you've damaged muscles. If it also includes an endurance aspect then and if you're going to be doing additional training that, Or in the morning less than 12 hours or so away. You should be making sure carbohydrates, are part of that other aspects of recovery are going to include Trying to decrease inflammation so fruits and vegetables and cherry juice that can be an easy aspect of it. So there's a lot of lot of components that go to recovery depending upon what you're recovering from."
My typical breakfast depends on my upcoming training for the day. If it's more resistive, I usually have a light protein-based snack. If it's more endurance or cardio-based, I'll normally have carbohydrates in the form of oats and whole fruit. Transcript: "What is my typical breakfast? Well, it kind of depends on what I have coming up. I normally do my training in the morning and so if I'm going to be doing more, resistive type training, all kind of have a lighter, some protein in particular, Maybe some whole fruit for just a small amount of carbohydrate. And then I sort of have a later, snacky kind of breakfast. That's again, a better source of protein at that time. If my morning is going to consist of more of my endurance, or really more of just kind of cardio type training of running or cycling or using a stepper. I'll normally have some carbohydrate, most of the time in oats and whole fruit. Those are kind of the things that I Tend to hang around with enjoying overnight oats very recently. Kind of getting a nice combination. Something that's very satisfying for me. But again my breakfast going to depend on what my day is looking like especially my training. That's ahead of me."
The most common mistake people make nutritionally is thinking that their goals can be reached in a few days or weeks, when it usually takes months or years to achieve the desired body composition. Transcript: "I think the most common mistake people make nutritionally derail them from their goals is thinking that it's going to be three days, seven days. And their goals will be reached, and they don't realize it took months or years to achieve the body that they have. And if they want to achieve a different type of body internally or externally from cardiovascular other, Types of Health to body composition, change. It takes more than just a few days or even a few weeks to see changes that they'd like to see"
You should avoid anything in protein powder that isn't certified by a third-party. This is because 25% of what's on shelves or online shops may have been contaminated with banned substances, heavy metals, or added single amino acids to make it look like it has a sufficient amount of protein. Transcript: "What things should you avoid in protein powder? You should avoid anything. You don't want in there. And so I recommend if you're going to be taking a protein powder, make sure it's gone through a third-party certification, like NSF for sport and form for sport. There's too many products out there. 25% dish of what's on the shelves or on online shops. Have been contaminated with some type of banned substance. I have heavy metals in there. They may Have added single amino acids to get the nitrogen up to make it look like has a sufficient amount of protein in there but it can all be bogus. And so you have to go through third-party certification to know what your what you see on that label is actually what you're putting into your body."