315-pound NFL player who has never missed a game due to injury says intermittent fasting keeps him in peak condition

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  • NFL star Ndamukong Suh hasn’t missed a game through injury in his 12-year career in the NFL.

  • The 35-year-old, 315-pound player maintains his durability through a strict lifestyle.

  • Suh’s daily routine includes intermittent fasting, kombucha, and a high-protein diet.

NFL star Ndamukong Suh managed to stay injury-free for his entire 12-year NFL career, and did so at a weight of 315 pounds.

The 35-year-old defensive tackle started all 16 games for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this year and continues to play at a high level into his late 30s, and he attributes his longevity to his strict lifestyle.

Suh said he follows various wellness practices, including intermittent fasting, daily kombucha consumption, and a high-protein, low-carb diet in an interview with GQ.

“When I started taking a holistic approach to my training, that’s when I saw big payoffs,” he told GQ. “We really take a holistic approach throughout a week.”

Suh only eats at certain times of the day

As a follower of intermittent fasting, Suh follows a schedule that alternates between periods of eating and periods of fasting. It’s an eating strategy that doesn’t limit what you eat, but rather when you eat.

Intermittent fasting has been popularized as a weight loss technique, but for Suh, who maintains his 315-pound frame to be an effective defensive lineman, that’s not necessarily his goal.

One of the benefits associated with intermittent fasting is reduced inflammation, a goal for professional athletes trying to avoid injury.

Ndamukong Suh sues Carson Wentz

Ndamukong Suh pursues Colts quarterback Carson WentzAndy Lyons/Getty Images

When your body is fasting, your glucose stores are nearly empty, which can reduce painful inflammation, Andrew Wang, MD, professor of immunobiology at the Yale School of Medicine, told Insider. Wang said the body produces less inflammation when burning ketones compared to glucose. Some studies have shown that diets that promote ketosis can also relieve inflammatory pain.

Another potential benefit Suh derives from intermittent fasting is improved cognitive function – a key quality for older gamers who aren’t as nimble and quick as younger ones. A small 2016 study that tested amateur weightlifters after fasting for 48 hours found that those who fasted improved their “mental flexibility,” defined as participants’ ability to quickly and efficiently switch between tasks, researchers said.

It emphasizes proteins, vegetables and kombucha

Suh’s mealtime comes around noon, so lunch and a pre-lunch snack are her biggest meals, according to GQ.

For her pre-lunch snack, Suh will eat almond butter, hard-boiled eggs, parfaits, and trail mix, all of which are high in protein.

Suh said kombucha — a probiotic-rich, low-sugar soda alternative — is also regularly featured in her pre-lunch snack. Kombucha is a fermented tea made by adding sugar and yeast to black or green tea.

The probiotics in kombucha can establish themselves in your gut and help healthy bacteria in your digestive system digest and absorb other nutrients, Vanessa Rissetto, RDN, co-founder of Culina Health, told Insider.

Suh said her most common lunch is low carb, like a salad with chicken or vegetables.

Read the original Insider article

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