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Monday, August 18, 2008

Michael Phelps: Is he the Supreme Champion of the Junk Food Nation?

Phelps' typical breakfast order from Pete's Grille in Baltimore, Maryland, as is recounted in Phelps' autobiography Beneath the Surface:

"Start with three [white bread] sandwiches of fried eggs, cheese, lettuce, tomato, fried onions, and mayonnaise; add one omelet, a bowl of grits, and three slices of French toast with powdered sugar; then wash down with three chocolate chip pancakes."

When young, one can get away with this kind of diet; but not from about age 30 onwards. If he was to continue this for long, he will begin to struggle with performance as muscles begin to lock up, tissues become inflamed with accumulating toxins as the liver begins to fail under the huge workload and the arteries begin to clog with all that unhealthy over-heated trans fats.

Swimmers are notorious for going to fat upon retirement with many dying prematurely from the complications of obesity such as sleep apnoea and diabetes.

An athlete who follows a healthy dietary regime will perform consistently to a very high standard and their career will go on for so much longer. Imagine the possibilities if Phelps was to do that!

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

HI Gary,
Michael Phelps does what he needs to do, and obviously it works for the moment. What is irresponsible is the reporting of his diet out of context.
One thing we have to remember about endurance athletes is that they need enormous calorie intake as their output is multiple times greater than the average person. Also I do believe that the 'hotter the engine the more you burn up' giving an athlete like him a lot more dietary discretion than any couch potato. The problem can come later when his established eating patterns are no longer commensurate with his exercise patterns. Hopefully he is smart anough and tuned in enough to adjust accordingly. I like to think so.