Giving the body what the body
needs Part II
by Amit S.Katz
In my first installment we established that the body needs four things 1.Oxygen
2.Water 3.Fuel and 4.Minerals. I covered the difficult part of the
equation, obtaining a good source of minerals. So if Water and Oxygen are
the easiest part of the equation, then we are left with Fuel.
This in and of itself is a huge can of worms, because we are no longer dealing
with the most basic fuel the body needs which is Glucose, but rather we are now
dealing with where the source of this fuel comes from i.e. food.
Every fighters diet will vary according to their height/weight, blood type,
eating habits, cultural background, physical geographical location and on and
on, etc etc…
We can therefore conclude that there is no set food specific to all fighters,
meaning we can not squeeze all of these varied people into one diet.
But we can establish guidelines that all athletes need, guidelines that make
sense if you are trying to perform at a high athletic level and leave the food
choices up to the fighter.
The food we eat can be broken down into 3 basic categories, each one yielding
some type of fuel or building block and they are 1.Fats 2.Carbohydrates and
Making the right choices from these food sources in a way is giving the body
it’s proper fuel whilst treating the body or the “Machine” if you will, as a
shrine to athletic performance.
1.Fats - Fats are needed for a great many physical functions, one of them being
Because fats require quite a bit of processing in order to turn them into fuel,
the body will not convert them immediately into glucose, so they will not affect
blood sugar levels immediately.
This will occur on an as needed basis, meaning when it’s time to perform, fats
will get used and the excess which is not used, will get stored in the fat cells
of the body for future use.
Saturated fats require a greater metabolic conversion in order to be used as a
fuel and are much less desirable to the athlete than unsaturated fats.
It is safe to say that high saturated fat content in ones diet will adversely
affect anyone’s health, let alone negatively impact an athletes performance.
Examples of saturated fats (The “Bad” fats) are; Animal fats (Not including fish
oils), Lard, coconut oil, butter, fried foods and most any fat that is solid at
Examples of Unsaturated fats (The “Good” fats) are; Flax seed, Olive, Fish,
Evening primrose, Borage, Chia Seed and Grape Seed oil.
2.Carbohydrates - Are broken down into two subcategories A. Complex and B.
Simple carbohydrates hit the bodies blood stream very rapidly, sometimes within
less than 15 minutes.
You would think that that would be the greatest food ever!!! Sweet!!! Instant
Nothing could be farther from the truth or worse for an athlete.
When glucose levels rise in the blood stream rapidly, the pancreas must produce
insulin in order to bring these levels down.
The result of such an event is usually a blood sugar high followed by a sugar
There is no human being on the planet that feels great during a sugar low, in
fact we feel at our worst.
An athlete wishing to put out during a sugar low will fail, simply because the
blood stream will not provide the necessary fuel in order to execute the task at
So simple carbohydrates are the enemy of the athlete.
Examples of simple carbohydrates are white sugar, white flour, fruit juices,
honey, sodas, candy, white rice, potatoes, white pasta, white breads.
On the other hand complex carbohydrates are metabolized over long periods of
time and do not get converted into blood glucose so easily.
They provide a steady flow or a source of fuel which the body can use without
creating peaks and lows.
They are perfect and the most desirable carbohydrate to the serious athlete.
Examples of complex carbohydrates are; whole grains such as brown rice and whole
wheat, foods made from whole grains such as whole wheat breads, whole grain
pasta, yams, sweet potatoes, molasses, all vegetables.
3.Protein - Proteins are the building blocks of muscles which if you think about
it, are the vehicle of athletic performance itself.
Proteins will get converted into glucose to meet the bodies energy needs, but we
really don’t want too much of this to occur, because muscle mass is hard to come
by and if we are furnishing fuel at the expense of muscle mass we are getting
Consuming the proper fats and carbs will protect the body from muscle loss.
But what proteins should we be eating?
Again this is as complicated a question as which fuel source or food should I
I really like choosing protein sources according to ones blood type.
Dr. Peter D’ Adamo covered this subject extremely well in his book “Eat Right 4
Your Blood Type”.
There is no reason to reinvent the wheel people, the knowledge is there, pick up
a copy of this book and you won’t ever have to worry about proteins ever again.
From my personal experience, eating proteins suggested to me as an O blood type
has contributed to a better all round health.