These are the best diets in the world in 2023

Nutrition 13/12/23 20:00 Migue A.

Nutrition is essential for a cyclist's performance, beyond weight control, it also provides us with the necessary energy for our training and supplies the body with the necessary nutrients to regenerate tissues damaged by it and ensure the correct work of each of the body's functions. We explain how to take care of your nutrition to be a better cyclist.

Nutrition, a key pillar of a cyclist's performance

At this time of year, as the new season approaches, many people make new resolutions for it or plan to take more care of details to improve on the bike. One of the most neglected aspects by those who ride a bike, not only at the amateur level, is diet. In fact, most people rush and do not hesitate to resort to one of the miracle diets that are published in various media.

The American medium U.S. News publishes a ranking of the most recommended diets according to their experts, among whose Top10 we find some like the Dash diet, designed to combat hypertension, or diets like the TLC or Ornish also focused on preventing cardiovascular risks, a real plague in that country where the care of food, if you have had the opportunity to travel there you will know, shines quite by its absence.

That is why it is noteworthy that, year after year, the first place in their ranking is occupied by the Mediterranean diet, worldwide recognized as one of the most balanced options in which fruits and vegetables abound, fish has an important role and fat contributions are usually of the unsaturated type, beneficial for the body.

And what is the best diet?

We regret to tell you that, if you are looking for the best diet, referring to a plan to follow to lose weight or whatever you need, the answer is none. Most of these "named" diets that we usually see published in various media, especially during the Christmas season or when summer is approaching and the bikini operation are usually of dubious effectiveness when not, directly harmful to health.

The goal of these diets is usually a rapid weight loss, which is achieved, very often, by completely restricting some of the nutrients such as carbohydrates or fats or, directly setting unsustainable daily caloric goals. This ends up resulting in either we fall into some kind of nutritional deficit, for example, anemia or, most commonly, we end up being prey to anxiety and rapid weight loss becomes a rebound effect that makes us end up in a situation even worse than the initial one.

The best diet therefore, is not needing a diet, but creating healthy eating habits, like those promoted, among others, by the aforementioned Mediterranean diet. We all know what the paradigms of a healthy diet are despite the fact that it is difficult for us to apply them, largely, forced by the frantic pace of life that is usually carried and by many of the social habits.

Fruits, vegetables, fish, limit the consumption of red meat, saturated fats, sugar; eliminate industrial pastries and, as far as possible, processed products. Minimize alcohol intake or even directly dispense with it and above all, something that is often not taken into account, maintain control of the amounts ingested since, you can have a perfectly balanced Mediterranean diet that, if at each meal you eat until you can't anymore the result will not be the one sought. In fact, there is a very appropriate saying for when we try to lose weight: "The chickens that come in for the ones that go out", that is, if we ingest more calories than we spend, we will gain weight and, on the contrary, we will lose weight. That is the essence.

The cyclist's diet. More than losing weight

Although in the vast majority of cases the goal sought by taking care of nutrition is to achieve an optimal weight, which in the case of the cyclist is the one that maximizes the famous watts/kilo ratio, that is, the point where we weigh as little as possible but without losing muscle mass to be able to continue applying the greatest possible power.

Often, a medium amateur cyclist is usually several kilos, if not many, above this optimal point so the first goal should be precisely that, to lose weight. For this, the first months of the season are ideal where the volume of training takes precedence over intensity which also means that we train the body to prefer the consumption of fatty acids. In fact, the bike itself is going to become one of our allies when it comes to reducing weight, the chickens that go out.

However, we should not fall into the typical mistake of miracle diets of excessively reducing the total volume of calories consumed, nor should we stick to the traditional rice, pasta and chicken, which, besides being boring foods, will make that, in the medium term, we cannot sustain this diet.

We must also bear in mind that if we do not provide enough energy in the form of carbohydrates our glycogen stores will be at a very low level so that, when we get on the bike we can hardly keep very low rhythms under the risk of suffering a good bonk as soon as we push more than necessary which, on the other hand, can make the training totally inefficient.

Apart from that, we must not forget, that to maintain a constancy in our bike rides we must recover adequately after getting off the bike, point where proteins take on special relevance and that we must take care of. Even the much maligned fats are important to maintain certain functions of the body such as the assimilation of fat-soluble vitamins or as a mere energy reserve, although of this last point we are sure to have plenty if we are looking to reduce weight.

Varied diet, complete diet

Therefore, we should not pigeonhole ourselves into certain foods but we must introduce variety into our diet, alternating types of meats and fish, one or other vegetables, egg, legumes, fruits -preferably seasonal-, etc. to thus ensure that we are supplying the body not only with the main macronutrients, but also with the essential micronutrients for its proper functioning: vitamins, minerals, etc.

To fit all this puzzle in which we have to value the nutritional content of what we eat, the variety, the quality and the quantity it is mandatory to flee from processed foods which, often, have excess fat, salt, sugar or additives in order to be more pleasant to the taste, even to the point of being able to say that they are addictive.

That is why we have to learn some basics of cooking to achieve the goal of a healthy diet. We are not telling you to learn how to make deconstructions or spherifications as we see in Master Chef but yes, that you know how to manage in the kitchen. We warn you that, for a cyclist's diet with learning to boil pasta, rice and legumes, make things on the grill and cook vegetables and other elements you can cover a large part of the needs. If we also have certain skills for this, we can prepare balanced and tremendously delicious dishes as demonstrated during the grand tours by some of the cooks of the different teams, proving that the era of white pasta and chicken fillet is already history.

Finally, when it comes to organising your diet and controlling the amounts you eat, we would recommend that you install some of the apps available for your mobile phone which, at least initially, allow you to keep track of the foods you eat in a simple way thanks to the database they usually include, which already compiles the nutrients contained in each one of them so that you can be aware that you are balancing them correctly. In any case, if you are not sure how to approach your nutrition, the best option is to put yourself in the hands of a professional nutritionist who will know how to guide you properly so that you reach your goals in the same way that we follow the instructions of a trainer for our training.

All that remains is to have the motivation to give up those pastries, beers with friends or a bowl of popcorn while watching a film. This does not mean that we have to give up these small pleasures altogether, but that we have to be aware that they are only for specific moments. A motivation that we can find in knowing how much we are going to improve our cycling form just by losing kilos and that will allow us to enjoy this sport much more.



Subscribe to our newsletter and receive all our news. Mountain bike, advice on training and maintenance of your bike, mechanics, interviews ...

You will be aware of everything!

¿Prefieres leer la versión en Español?

Estas son las mejores dietas del mundo en 2023


Você prefere ler a versão em português?

Estas são as melhores dietas do mundo em 2019