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About half of a young athlete's diet should be carbohydrates, according to Muth. "Ideally, they'll get this from whole grains, such as whole grain cereals, brown rice, and whole grain pasta, and from fruits and vegetables," she says.
Field likes whole grain granola or energy bars like Clif bars, which are a mix of carbs, protein, and fiber. She says, "They help kids feel full and they don't have too much saturated fat"—the fat that clogs hearts. "Look for snacks with whole ingredients like nuts and dried fruit," Field says.
Stacey Udell, 43, of Dix Hills, New York, who has 14- and 12-year-old athletes, swears by Funky Monkey carb snacks, which pack three servings of freeze-dried fruit in each ounce. "They're great in yogurt and on cereal too. No more smushy bananas, brown pineapple, or dented apples," she says.