How to eat like a Martial Artist

As you begin your adventure of mastering the art of any martial art, you will learn that your body is a temple of which you should take care. It is provided to carry you all the days of your life, and you have an obligation to look after it. You need to be aware of everything you put into your body, and you need to realise that food is meant as an energy source, it is a need not a luxury. Once you realise this, you are on the path to good health and to be the best you can in the martial art you have selected.

Here are a few pointers when it comes to eating healthy. Look at what you are putting in your mouth, take note of where it came from. Is it covered in pesticides or injected with hormones? If you are unsure, it’s best to substitute it with something you can trace to its roots (pun intended).

Martial artists have many different dietary preferences, but they agree on one main concept, “Eat clean”


High quality, clean, lean proteins can be found in the form of free-range animal products. The one guaranteed to be in its purest form is fresh fish, even better if you have caught it yourself. Other options are chicken breasts or lean beef. For the vegetarian, the options of proteins range from legumes to soy, beans to nuts and even yoghurt which is great because it is also a probiotic.


Greens are a must, and those leafy veg are jam-packed full of fibre, calcium, antioxidants and iron. All vegetables are good for you, but they are best eaten raw or steamed as they lose less nutrients. A bonus is that they are super easy to grow, if you’ve planted them, you know what they have been exposed to. If you choose the carb conscious dietary route, try minimising your root veg intake, but don’t cut them out completely.


Lately, starch has been frowned upon, but rice is one of the staples in the Shaolin Monks diet. They believe in simplicity, not only to keep their bodies in peak condition but also for spiritual reasons. If you would like to add starch to your diet, try steer clear of the refined products like pasta and bread, and substitute them with, spuds, sweet potato and the least processed rice such as Jasmine or Basmati.


Some of the top martial artists believe in fasting between meals, the only thing they consume in the five hours between breakfast and lunch, and lunch and dinner, is water. Others believe snacking throughout the day is best, while some say four or five small meals keep you energised.

Everyone’s bodies and blood types differ and depending on that as well as your daily activities, and mineral or vitamin deficiencies you may have, you will need to adjust your dietary lifestyle requirements. Test the above tips until you find one that is best for you. But remember if it is something that “man” had a hand in making, it’s probably best to put it down.