The Importance of Nutrition in Combat Sport

Nutrition plays a crucial role in the art of combat sport, by way of planned meals that enable combat athletes to stay in shape as they train for cage fights. While there are those that simply adopt meal plans used by other MMA fighters, or training diets found in the Internet, planned meals can only do much if not attuned to the needs of a combat athlete’s body.

Anyone who is into combat sports is well aware that he or she cannot afford to lose or gain weight, especially when fighting in a specific MMA class. However, in mixed martial arts (MMA) a combat athlete’s skills in boxing, kickboxing and Brazilian jiu jitsu (bjj) matters more than weight. What’s even more important is for combat athletes to have strength and stamina to withstand pain and endure fatigue.

Why Consulting with a Sport Physician is Necessary Before Adopting a Meal Plan

To make planned meals truly effective as a basic training diet, they must also take into account a combat athlete’s overall physical and health conditions, which denotes consulting with a physician who specializes in sports medicine. A sports doctor can ascertain if a meal plan provides a combat athlete’s daily energy requirement and the amount of energy needed to meet his or her resting energy expenditure.

Another crucial aspect of balanced nutrition taken under proper medical advice is that of determining what the included nutrients can do to a combat athlete’s bones and heart. Needless to say, the heart and bones of MMA fighters experience extraordinary strain due to the nature of their sport.

Even if a balanced meal plan was prepared by a sports nutritionist, a sports physician determines if it contains enough nutrients to maintain a healthy heart and stronger bones based on an assessment of a combat athlete’s overall health condition, especially when older age is a factor.

What Makes a Basic Training Diet Sufficient?

A basic training diet is deemed as sufficient if it meets a combat athlete’s requirement for:

  • Nutrients and energy as demanded by the individual’s daily training and exercise
  • Recovery and adaptation in between training sessions
  • Long term nutrition to achieve and maintain optimal body weight and levels of body fat.
  • Fluids for maximum hydration prior, during and after training and exercise.