Sep 21, 2015
For Djokovic, Less Gluten = More Wins

Novak Djokovic has been ranked the number one men’s tennis player in the world four out of the last five years, and his reign has coincided with a drastic change to his diet—in 2010, Djokovic was diagnosed with an allergy to gluten. Once he removed both gluten and dairy from his diet, previously chronic health problems such as vomiting and trouble breathing during matches, disappeared.

As reported at, Djokovic’s winning diet consists of fruits and an oat-based cereal with honey for breakfast. He has a snack mid-morning, consisting of gluten-free bread and tuna or crackers and avocado. For lunch, he makes sure to have meals high in carbohydrates and vegetable-based nutrients. He consumes a high-protein dinner, with a preference for white meats like chicken and fish. 

“During the day, I want my body to be as energized as possible,” said Djokovic. “When I eat carbs with very little protein, I’m telling my body, ‘I need energy.’ At night, I don’t need energy. So at dinner, I will tell my body, ‘I need you to repair this mess I made. Please take this protein and do what needs to be done.’”

See more about gluten-free nutrition for athletes in a recent Training & Conditioning article, “Grains of Truth.”


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