Athletic performance depends on diet. When players are young, they just do not realize it. Many NFL players eat McDonald’s regularly. For example, the Bengals teammates routinely get together to scarf down McGriddles, hash browns, OJ, and sausage.
However, for a player to maintain strength, speed, power, and performance on the field when they get older, they need to conform to eating well. If they conform and learn to eat well when younger, they will supercharge their energy more than eating at McDonald’s. But the true hidden secret behind a healthy diet at an early age is longevity.
Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals quarterback, was enlightened just in his first season out of the 2020 draft. He always had an interest in eating well, and in his first year with the Bengals hired professional chef Jose Salazar.
There are many professional athletes that are exemplary in this approach. For instance, Tom Brady is 44, recently retired, was able to play longer and experience less injury, accrediting it all to his perfect nutrition. He did not quit because he was slow or feeling old. Another player, Andrew Whitworth, for the LA Rams, gave Joe sound advice, telling him that diet is critical to prevent strain, pain, and injury.
The Joe Burrow Diet
At the young age of 25-years-old, Joe suffered an ACL tear that ended his season. While in rehab for his injury, he started to eat healthily and cut out inflammatory foods. As a result, he really noticed his strength return quickly and felt he healed faster.
Joe eats a high protein diet. His chef says he eats about a pound of protein a day. This is essential for Joe to keep his weight up. Protein provides the necessary nutrients to rebuild muscles broken down from training, practice, and games. And with all the training football players do, they need the extra nutrients.
On the flip side, if you do not consume enough protein, strength cannot rebuild, which is one sure-fire way to injure your muscles.
Salazar has a few rules that cannot be broken in the kitchen and are an absolute must on Joe’s menu. First, he does not consume dairy, and Salazar does not add it to the six meals he makes for Joe each day. Dairy creates inflammation and affects all people differently. In addition, the research is still on the table about this subject. However, many athletes just cut out dairy to reduce inflammation and not take any chances. Inflammation in your body leads to injury, pain, and strain and restricts optimal recovery.
And secondly, he has to have herbs and spices on everything, including chili peppers which he loves. Chili peppers are an excellent natural anti-inflammatory. Maybe some spicy creole cooking influenced his taste buds when he was the quarterback at LSU.
Players on the Bengals like Ochocinco eat at McDonald’s routinely. He says it has helped him avoid injury. Not sure how believable that is or just a paid-for marketing campaign. I have not heard about anyone feeling healthy and great from eating McDonald’s regularly. Watch the documentary Super-Size Me. I think that will explain it best.
It is good to see Joe following his body’s needs to maximize his performance. Most players just jump on the bandwagon. He probably tried the NFL McDonald’s Diet plan, and saw and felt it was bad for his performance and energy.