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Healthy Cold Foods to Beat The Heat & Enhance Athletic Performance

Photo Credit Healthy Well Lifestyle

Sandra Millward knows how to properly fuel high performance athletes. 

As a frequent source of expert nutritional advice in this space, Millward, a certified orthomolecular nutritionist, talked recently about her experience working with the Olympic National Field Hockey Team. 

She reveals watermelon to be an excellent source of hydration to beat the heat while in training.

Millward says, “When working with the Olympic Men’s National Field Hockey team during the record heat dome, summer of 2021, I had to find some healthy ways to keep them nourished and hydrated in order to keep cool. 

We had traveled to many warm foreign countries together, so it was easy in my own hometown to whip up some healthy cold snacks from my own kitchen.  Some of the best things that I made that were tasty, vibrant, and healthy were with watermelon.”

Why Watermelon?

Watermelon contains Vitamin A and C, potassium and magnesium. Think antioxidants and muscle recovery.

Watermelon has high water concentration. This assists in regulating body temperature- no brainer here, hydration to all cells for efficient nutrition delivery, and increasing alertness to the brain. 

Most athletes who have “hit the wall”, know how important hydration is.

Watermelon can lower inflammation and oxidative stress. Not only in life, but in sport, too.

Watermelon contains an amino acid called citrulline that may reduce muscle soreness and improve performance. 

You can also get Watermelon as a supplement in powder to boost the health benefits. 

I believe in boosting when you are pushing your body in performance.

The less sexy, however important factor, in achieving healthy sport goals, in the heat or anytime, is bowel health. 

I always (discreetly) managed the bowels of the athletes after travel. It is integral for top performance to have a clean machine! 

Watermelon provides hydration and fiber to move the waste from your bowels so that you aren’t holding on to unwanted material or, to have it recirculating through your system. Eat it, utilize it, and let it go!

Holistic style watermelon-strawberry popsicles

• 3 heaping cups cubed watermelon

• 1 heaping cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)

• zest and juice of 1 lime or lemon


1. Place all ingredients in a blender and puree until completely smooth.

2. Pour into cool looking popsicle molds and freeze 3-4 hours, or until very solid.


Add in some extra electrolyte powder if you have a long run, extended play or it’s dang hot and you are sweating!

 Watermelon salad

This recipe was shared to me from a high school friend, Melanie S.  There is lots of flexibility to make it to your own taste.

Watermelon salad- make according to how many you are feeding. I don’t think you need three cases of watermelon like I do for these guys!

Chunked watermelon

Fine diced Serrano chiles

Fine chopped Khalkidhiki olives (which are stuffed with almond)

Fine chopped green or spring onion

Pan toasted Pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

Fine chopped Cilantro

Fresh lime juice and zest to taste

Feta, if desired.  

For more information on healthy recipes, go to her website Remember to use sunscreen, wear a running cap, and limit your time in direct sunlight. Stay safe!

Our Fitness Friday weekly feature is submitted and written by Christine Blanchette so please follow her on Twitter as well as her Run With It Youtube Channel.


About Sportswave



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Sportswave promotes/broadcasts Amateur Sports within the Lower Mainland.
He was recognized by Ravi Kahlon, BC’s MLA Minister for Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation in September 11, 2017.
In December 2022 he was Awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Pin.
Awarded Rotary Paul Harris Fellow Award for tangible for significant assistant given for the better understanding and friendly relations among peoples of the world.
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