Tidbits from Nutrition and Athletic Performance by Dr Douglas N Graham

Tidbits from Nutrition and Athletic Performance by Dr Douglas N Graham.  For more on Dr Graham visit foodnsport.com

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  • Little or no study have been done to locate nutrient factors that would have a positive effect on physical performance if they were subtracted from the diet.  Ie, cholesterol, animal protein, casein. 
  • Fruits provide the highest percentage of vitamins per calorie consumed, with vegetables coming in second. 
  • Vegetables provide the highest percentage of minerals per calorie consumed, with fruits coming in second. 
  • It is a myth that protein builds muscle.  Muscle building is an adaptive response to muscle usage, generated by the body when the body perceives increases in gravitational resistance  
  • Raw protein from fruits and vegetables are completely usable by the body, whereas as cooked protein is not.  
  • There is no medical term for protein deficiency.  A “protein” deficiency is actually a diet with insufficient calories. 
  • The bodies natural pH is slightly alkaline.  The waste products of metabolism from athletic activity all come in the form of acids that must be eliminated from the body in order for the body to recover.  Eating acid forming foods (starches, grains, animal products)  following exercise forces the body to work extra hard in order to recover.  Fruits and vegetables are alkaline forming, thus allowing the body to easily return to its alkaline state
  • Exercise doesn’t add energy, it takes energy.  The increased energy comes from recovery.  Training teaches the body to exert more energy per unit of time for more units of time.
  • A large meal of difficult digesting food can require up to 50% of the total blood supply to the organs of digestion.  This leaves little blood for other functions.  Fruits and vegetables digest with ease.
  • The monomeal (eating one food at a time.  Ie, bananas, oranges, mango…) is king for ease of digestion, leaving blood available for performance or for recovery.
  • As fat levels rise in the bloodstream, oxygen and glucose uptake slows down.  Both glucose and oxygen are vital to athletic performance.  As percentage of calories from fat goes up, athletic performance goes down.
  • Sleep is a goldmine for recovery.  If you wake up and want to roll over and go back to sleep, you need more sleep.  Conversely, if you wake and want to explore, then get up and go!  (I have increased my sleep and have noticed better performance and recovery).  
  • Anabolism: any construction of complex structures from simpler ones by living cells.  Catabolism: any deconstructive process by which complex substances are converted into simple ones by living cells.  Anabolism progresses faster when we are at rest or sleeping.  Catabolism progresses faster when we are active.  Maintaining a homeostasis between anabolism and catabolism is crucial for athletic recovery and athletic gains.
  • Easy electrolyte mix: banana and celery (or celery juice), blended with water.  (I have tried this in training with excellent success.  I juice 3 stalks of celery, then blend with 1 banana and 500ml of water).
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A simple meal plan:

  • Breakfast: juicy fruit.  Citrus, melons, pineapple, strawberries, peaches, mangos.  Eat until satiated.  This allows for a hydrating start to the day.  
  • Lunch: sweet fruit.  Bananas are the cheapest and most common.  Other excellent choice include dates, figs, sugar apples, jackfruit, lychee, persimmons.  These foods are more calorie dense and will keep the athlete satiated throughout the day. 
  • Dinner: acid or sub acid.  If you are truly active, then start the meal with fruit,  such as oranges, grapefruit, lemon, lime, passion fruit, raspberries, apples, papaya, peach, pear, plum, nectarines.  Eat as much as you care for.  Follow this with a large salad (I eat, on average, 2 heads of romaine lettuce a day) consisting of lettuce, celery, or whatever vegetables you desire.  Dressing: blend two fruits together or one fruit and one vegetable.  Ie, strawberry and lime, or orange and celery.   
  • Drink as much water as you care for.  If you drink water and it goes down easy, then you probably need more water.      
 The monomeal: my favourite way to eat.  

The monomeal: my favourite way to eat.  

A an example of what I eat in day visit Food for the day. May 24, 2108

 

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