A Sports Nutrition Guide for Basketball

Klean Team Sponsored Athlete Tiffany Scott

It’s the height of the playoffs and the NBA Finals are fast approaching, and with that, we wanted to explore the optimal nutrition for basketball players to perform at their peak on the courts.

As a basketball player, you’re looking to perform at your best both on and off the court; whether it’s defending the basket, aiming for a slam dunk, or striving for a PB in the gym, your nutrition matters.

Optimum Nutrition for Basketball Players

The right sports nutrition is the foundation for not only basketball players, but any athlete to be able to perform at their peak when competing in their sport.

Klean-Team-Sponsored-Athlete-Matt Scott

Due to the high-intensity and explosive nature of basketball, it has quite specific energy needs. During basketball season, and even through training in the off-season, the energy demands are high. There’s not only a lot of running but also a variety of explosive moments from quick passes to lay-up dunking that all require you to be adequately fuelled.

Individual nutrition requirements will all be dependent on your specific needs, training load, body composition, and training goals alongside overall health. A healthy balanced diet of fruit, vegetables, wholegrains, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats is essential in providing your body with the right nutrition, but it’s important to note the key nutrition of appropriately timed carbohydrates for fuel on the courts, fats, and proteins for lean mass, muscle repair, and recovery.

What Nutrition Do Basketball Players Need?


Protein is a vital part of a basketball player’s diet and should roughly make up 20% of their whole diet, as it aids the building and maintaining lean body mass and is also essential for recovery and repair. You should be aiming for a daily protein intake of around 1.4–1.7 g/kg of body mass.

Klean Athlete’s Klean Isolate can be easily added to water or milk depending on which flavour you choose, making it a great quick option pre-or post-game for a boost of protein. It also naturally contains the electrolytes potassium and sodium to help replenish lost minerals.


Due to the high-intensity nature of basketball, a high-carbohydrate diet is key, and ideally, at least 60% of your total calories should come from carbohydrate-rich foods such as pasta, bread, rice, vegetables, and fruits. Whether it’s during practice, training, or game day, carbs will be your primary source of energy, so it’s vital to factor them into your diet.

When it comes to game day, the ideal pre-game meal should be high in carbs, low in fat, and low in fibre to curb hunger and give your body the energy it needs. The amount of carbs you need will differ for everyone but a good basis to start with is the following sum:
(Body weight in kilograms) x (hours prior to competition) = grams of carbohydrate

To support energy on the courts, our Klean Endurance can be used before, during, or after a workout and offers a clinically proven method to help restore energy throughout exercise.


It can be easy to dismiss fats, but around 20% of your diet should involve heart-healthy fats, such as mono-unsaturated fats from foods such as avocados, as well as omega-3 fats that can be found in oily fish like salmon, while avoiding saturated and trans fats, which tend to be found in meat fats and processed foods.

Dietary fats are important in providing valuable metabolic fuel for muscles during exercise and help to support proper immune function.


Like with any sport, but especially basketball due to its bursts of high intensity, you need to also invest in your recovery to perform at your peak. When it comes to recovery nutrition, there are three priorities:

  • Rehydrate – to replenish lost fluids due to sweat
  • Repair muscle – for function and development
  • Refuel muscle glycogen – for carbohydrate stores

Klean Creatine supports muscle strength, performance, and recovery. Creatine is scientifically proven to help you increase your body strength, build muscle mass, and recover more quickly from strenuous exercise.

For best results, take this product with a carbohydrate-containing beverage or food 30 minutes before exercise, or immediately following exercise with a recovery beverage, such as Klean Recovery.

Why Choose Klean?

Klean Team Sponsored Athlete Tiffany Mitchell

At Klean Athlete, we care about what you’re putting into your body. All our products are developed through sound science and have NSF Certified for Sport® status, so you can hit those free throws with trust that you’re fuelled with everything you need and nothing you don’t.

How Pro Basketball Players Use Klean Products

Sponsored Klean Athlete Tiffany Mitchell and professional American basketball player confidently uses our products to fuel her body, saying:

“I am a Klean Athlete because I believe the body is a machine and what you put in your body is just as important as your performance on the court. Also, all Klean Athlete supplements are NSF Certified for Sport®, so I can have peace of mind knowing that I’m training and competing the right way”

Four‐time Paralympian Matt Scott, and a proud member of the sponsored Klean Athlete team, prides himself on using Klean Athlete products to fuel his body, he says:

“I am a Klean Athlete because I am building a legacy that I will not allow to be tainted. I take immense pride in my performance and want only elite fuel made for champion athletes. I control what my body consumes, and I choose to compete clean.”

Find out more about the importance of carbohydrates when training and explore how carb cycling could be beneficial to performance:



Klean Athlete

Klean Athlete

Klean Athlete