Thursday, October 24, 2019

Why Oranges at Half Time?

Fweet! The whistle blows, the hot and tired soccer players come off the field, and a coach or parent hands them out: juicy, refreshing halftime orange slices. Ah! That’s better.

If you have a child who plays soccer, or if you grew up playing soccer yourself, you’ve probably seen this halftime orange snack many times. But have you ever asked yourself where the tradition comes from?

It seems that orange-eating at soccer games actually got its start in England. There, the tradition of eating oranges at the half-time mark during a game of “footy” goes back to at least the 1950s. In fact, when the Queen of England herself hosted a soccer game in her back garden in 2013, footmen in long tailcoats offered orange slices on silver trays. We bet you’ve never experienced that!

Eventually, as soccer became more popular in the U.S., the practice spread. But what makes sliced oranges such a great soccer snack?

Oranges are hydrating

It’s really easy to get dehydrated when you’re sprinting around chasing that ball! Fortunately, oranges are 87% water, so those juicy-sweet sections help replenish some of what gets lost when we exercise.

Oranges are convenient and fast to eat

A seedless, juicy “orange smile” is super quick to grab and disappears just as fast. Check out this great and easy way to slice oranges for halftimeNavels are a perfect choice.

Oranges are high in carbohydrates, but not in calories

Oranges contain natural carbs that give energy, but they’re low-calorie and won’t weight players down and make it hard to run around.

Oranges don’t spike and crash players’ blood sugar

Oranges may taste sweet, but they have a low glycemic index of 40. This means that they won’t cause your blood sugar to spike up suddenly and then bottom out, like processed sugary treats. Instead, they’ll deliver energy gradually and evenly…perfect for sports.

Keep the Healthy Half Time Going!

Juicy sliced oranges from Florida Fruit Shippers

Unfortunately, as many parents of athletes know, the healthy choice of oranges isn’t always what we see on the fields anymore. Too often, chips, crackers, and even candy bars, cookies, and donuts are showing up on the sidelines instead.

Of course, kids gobble these up, but remember: it’s easy to take in a lot of calories when we eat snacks like these after exercise. Also, while high-sugar snacks are okay in moderation, they shouldn’t be a common thing for anybody.

By the way, don't forget that along with those oranges, it’s best to stick to water to drink. Marketers may push sports drinks, but they’re usually not needed. Experts agree that unless kids are playing in very high heat or working out for a really long time,  sugary drinks are unnecessary.

Kids really love sliced fruit. Research shows that the simple act of cutting fruit up makes kids much, much more likely to eat it! On a hot day, when you’ve just been out there giving your all, a plate of bright, juicy oranges is the perfect choice.

“Orange” you glad you brought the oranges?

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