According to the American Dietetic Association, "Vegetarian diets are nutritionally adequate for all stages of life and for athletes." Evidence demonstrates that diets such as a Starch-Smart® diet, provides many health benefits for athletes. It also may lessen exercise-induced oxidative stress, and shorten recovery time. When vegan athletes focus on eating micronutrient rich foods, they can compete successfully at high level endurance sports without consuming animal products. A well planned, Starch-Smart diet provides excellent nutrition and sufficient amounts of calcium, iron, protein, fat, and carbohydrates to maximize long-term performance. Increased calorie and protein needs can be met by consuming more foods, especially those that are calorie dense. For best performance, between 60% to 70% of an athlete's daily energy needs should come from carbohydrates (starches). A low carbohydrate diet will decrease performance. Consuming a diet rich in beans, pasta, corn, potatoes, bread, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds provides 70% to 95+% of calories from carbohydrates which will assist in recovery, avoid illness, and improve performance and endurance.