MMA stands for mixed martial arts. Following the right diet is extremely essential for MMA fighters and athletes. This write-up provides guidelines for MMA diet.
Mixed martial arts (MMA) is a very popular combat sport. To be a good MMA player, you need to be skilled at various techniques such as kickboxing and wrestling. Mixed martial arts is a contact combat sport, which is why intensive training workouts and proper diet are very crucial for achieving endurance and physical conditioning. The fighters must follow the best diet plan that gives them the energy to train.
The diet for MMA fighters must be such that strengthens the immune system, so that healing is faster and the fighter’s endurance levels are higher. Since this is a contact sport where the fighter has to use various types of striking and grappling techniques, the fighters must be agile. They must build muscle strength, punching power, and sharpen their reflexes. A lot depends on their workout. To be able to train better, they must follow MMA diet and nutritional plans. Without following the appropriate diet, the fighter will not be able to last for a long time in the ring.
Diet and Nutrition for MMA Athletes
MMA fighters need to perform cardiovascular exercises and various types of workouts. Since MMA athletes need to build up their muscle strength and lower their body fat, they must pay a lot of attention to their diet. Weight management is a very important aspect. You have to consider about the weight class as well.
So, once you have made a decision about the category you want to be in, you can decide whether you need to cut down on weight or add some pounds to move to the next level. You need to very careful about what you eat as following the right diet will build up your endurance and help you train harder. The best diet plan for such athletes would be the plan that includes carbohydrates, proteins, essential fats, vitamins, and minerals. It would be best to have smaller meals every three hours, as that would speed up the metabolism. Here is some information on the types of foods that must be consumed by MMA players.
You need to include good quality carbohydrates that provide you with the energy to train. If your diet is unable to provide the required energy, you wouldn’t be able to train. Rather than including the simple carbohydrates from the processed foods, you should include complex carbohydrates that are found in fruits, brown rice, pasta, rye toast, rice cakes, baked potatoes, energy bars, whole grain cereals, and vegetables. Sugar from the fruits (fructose) is a quick energy source, which is why including fruits in the breakfast is a better option.
The diet should include complex carbohydrates since the body takes a longer time to digest these complex carbohydrates. The whole grains also contain proteins and fiber, and take longer to digest, thereby keeping the sugar level stabilized. These are natural appetite suppressants and when you consume such foods, you will experience a feeling of fullness and thus eat less. A major portion of your diet must be complex carbohydrates. At least half of your calories must come from consumption of carbohydrates. Having these foods 3 hours prior to your workouts will provide you with the required energy.
Proteins and Fatty Acids
Protein is a very important component of diet for athletes. Proteins are essential for healthy bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. It is required for building up muscles and repairing the tissues that get damaged due to intensive workouts. Diet plans for MMA athletes must include lean proteins such as egg whites, lean red meat, fish, chicken breast, whey protein, and dairy products in their diet. Protein shakes are usually included in the diet for MMA.
When the body runs out of energy, it converts fat into energy. As fat contains 9 calories in every gram, whereas carbohydrates and protein contain 4 calories per gram. Thus, MMA fighters should include food items that are rich in fat. Trans fats and saturated fats should be avoided, whereas foods rich in omega 3 essential fatty acids should be consumed. Fish such as mackerel and salmon are good sources of these fatty acids. You can also take cashews or cashew butter. Taking fish oil supplements will also prove beneficial. Consumption of such foods will help in reducing inflammation and improve cardiovascular function.
Dehydration can adversely affect one’s performance, therefore drink lots of fluids and stay hydrated at all times. Avoid the unhealthy aerated drinks and sweetened juices, increase the intake of fruit and vegetable juices. Drinking adequate amounts of water will also help in flushing out the harmful toxins from your body.
If you wish to excel in this full contact combat sport, make sure that you follow the dietary guidelines. It is very essential for an effective MMA training. So, follow the best diet plan and show your strength in the ring!