COUNTRYC M ATTERS
Climbing the biggest war memorial in Britain
There’s room to improve here. For a vegetarian, Tom’s diet seems to be lacking in vegetables. It’s typical of the issues that I see these days: lots of people are going veggie or vegan, but they go unhealthy veggie or vegan, and eat a lot of highly processed food. I encourage people to eat a rainbow; different coloured vegetables have different health properties.
The party on Saturday seems to have thrown a few things off course. I get that he’s in his 20s, but I wonder if he could drink slightly less. Drinking regularly means his sleep quality won’t be good, which changes the hormones in his body. I think he is getting away with it right now because he is so active and young. But in five years or so, he’ll find that he just can’t.
It’s really important that Tom gets enough calories and nutrients during the day to fuel his training and recovery.
I would recommend increasing the amount of carbohydrates in his diet, particularly around his workouts. On the days where he is on the go and does not have time for a full meal, he could add a banana and some peanut butter to his protein shake.
His diet is quite heavy in meat alternatives and processed foods – he could swap some of the meat substitutes in favour of protein from pulses, legumes and grains.
Well-planned vegetarian and vegan diets can be incredibly nutritious and healthy because they tend to be lower in saturated fat, higher in fibre, and contain greater amounts of fruit and vegetables.
I’d suggest Tom take a vitamin B12 supplement to prevent deficiency and incorporate some plant sources of omega-3, such as flaxseeds, chia seeds or walnuts.