T Nation

Question for Christian Thibaudeau

There has been lots of discussion on how to effectively train the nervous system for maximal strength, rate of force development, etc. There has even been some discussion of supplements that will help in these endeavours (Power Drive, etc.)

My question for you is, what is the optimal diet for a someone looking to improve these characteristics of strength that depend heavily on the nervous system?

I have heard various things, but I would like to hear your take on it first.

I feel that it’s highly individualized but consider that:

1- Too much high glycemic carbs = insulin crash = energy and activation crash

2- Too little calories = distressed physiological state = less effective neuromotor and cognitive capacities

From my experience the best diet for athletes consist of approximately a repartition of 50% protein, 30% fat, 15% low glycemic carbs, 5% high glycemic carbs. Also avoid high glycemic carbs prior to a workout, but use them post-workout. A protein and fat meal 90 minutes before a workout is optimal for me.

Obviously these ratios will vary depending on the individual.

I’ve heard that things like omega-3s, especially DHA, help the nerve cell function properly. Obviously good electolyte balance and hydration state play into this too.

What do you think about these things?

I’m a big fan of flaxseed and fish oils which contain a lot of omega-3s. I literally buy the stuff in bulk!

I doubt that hyperhydration would have any positive effect on neural transmission. But hypohydration will impair the neuromotor transmission for sure.