Foods Intended for Sportspeople


Providing athletes with nutritional products designed to meet their dietary needs: sports foods provide essential fluids, nutrients, and substances to support the body during high-intensity physical activities. 

Sports and physical activity represent a way of life for millions of europeans


of Europeans practice intense physical activity at least once a week according to the Special Eurobarometer 412 – Sports and Physical Activity, March 2014

Proper nutrition is critical to prepare for, maintain and recover from high-level sporting performance.


Sportspeople have very specific nutritional needs

Sports and other physical activities may push the body to extreme conditions, for which sportsmen and athletes require tailored nutritional support to optimize performance and recovery.


From elite professional athletes to dedicated amateurs

Millions of people across the continent consume sports foods and drinks to provide the nutrients and fluids they need as they play competitive sport or are involved in other intense muscular effort.

SNE is a partner with the European Week of Sport

The European Week of Sport is an initiative to promote participation in sport and physical activity among European citizens. Through this partnership, SNE confirms its commitment to dialogue and cooperation between policy makers and the sport sector in order to inspire people to do more sport and physical activity. During the 2020’s European Week of Sport, SNE organized a webinar: “#BeActive! Online fitness session & sport nutrition recommendations – How to keep a healthy and active lifestyle?”. Find it here

Sports foods are not to be mistaken for energy drinks

They differ dramatically in their composition and usage. Energy drinks are softdrinks intended to boost mental energy by the use of stimulants. Energy drinks are not suitable for maintaining or restoring hydration and sodium status, which are key needs of sportspeople.

SNE contributed to the publication of the European wide standard to prevent the presence of doping substances in sports nutrition and food supplements

From the very start of the discussions, our sector has been fully supportive of the development of this standard. We have been at the forefront to provide our expertise to build good development and manufacturing practices aimed at preventing the presence of prohibited substances in food intended for sportspeople. This highlights our commitment to the safety and scientific integrity of all specialized nutrition products, including sports food.

Our products

Sports foods are specifically formulated for and marketed to athletes, helping them to ensure an appropriate supply of fluids and nutrients which help the body prepare for, maintain and recover from intense physical performance. They can be divided into four different categories:
Carbohydrate-rich energy food products

products high in glycemic carbohydrates essential before, during and after exercise for providing energy and refuelling glycogen storage.

Protein and protein components

high protein and essential amino acids products ensuring endogenous synthesis of proteins, muscle maintenance/gain, and glycogen synthesis when combined with carbohydrates.

Carbohydrate-electrolyte solutions

drinks providing carbohydrates as the major energy source and effective in maintaining or restoring hydration status.

Enriched foods with supplements such as caffeine or creatine

some dietary ergogenic aids improve exercise performance capacity and/or enhance training adaptations or allow an individual in certain circumstances to tolerate heavier training to a greater degree by helping recover faster or helping to stay injury-free and/or healthy during intense training.

Commitment to the highest quality and safety standards.

Good manufacturing practices

SNE advocates for the development of good manufacturing practices, highlighting specific basic requirements and principles linked to the manufacturing of sports food. SNE actively supported the developing of a  EU-wide standard on doping substances in sports food and food supplements being an observer organisation to this CEN work.

Clear labelling

The specificities of sports foods are clearly indicated on product labels and consumers have access to adequate and clear information about the intended use of these products.

Read more

About how these specialised nutrition products are regulated in the EU.