It’s safe to say the diet of a champion quarterback will be different from what the average football fan eats, and Tom Brady is no exception. But the Patriots quarterback’s diet isn’t exactly what you think an active pro athlete would eat.
Brady even wrote a book about it in 2017, called The TB12 Method, which details what he eats and when. At first glance, his diet is low in sugar and full of vegetables, lean meats, and water. This seems like something straight out of government nutrition guidelines to help sustain his goal of playing football for as long as possible.
But a closer look reveals why this diet isn’t that easy for the average person to follow. In fact, for many “regular people,” it could be nearly impossible to copy.
What does Tom Brady eat each day?
What Brady consumers is generally low sugar and as natural as possible. He’s even been known to make his own sports drinks, eschewing Gatorade. The QB’s daily diet is about 80% vegetables with a decent amount of lean meats, and he includes only whole grains.
But Brady also has a rather rigid eating schedule, starting with 20 ounces of water in the morning with electrolytes mixed in and moving on to a fruit-and-nut smoothie. After a workout comes a protein-based drink and breakfast, also usually protein-based with avocados and eggs.
Snacks are present throughout the day, and lunch usually involves mostly vegetables with maybe some nuts, plus fish. More snacks in the afternoon, either protein-based or whole fruits, are followed by a vegetable-heavy dinner and no dessert, but maybe some bone broth.
Brady also restricts food combinations, avoiding a mix of protein and carbs like potatoes. He also eats fruit alone and does not drink a lot of water when he’s eating. He generally avoids nightshade vegetables, such as tomatoes, and he won’t eat olive oil that’s been cooked.
The 42-year-old admits he’s gotten less strict over the past few years and now allows himself the occasional treat, like pizza, but his daily diet is still generally the same.
One reason why diets are so tough to maintain involves the restrictions they place on what you eat. And Brady’s highly restrictive eating plan even makes you monitor the food combinations you eat. If you can stick to it, that’s great, but others may not be so lucky. After all, it’s a diet meant to sustain a specific activity level, one most non-athletes don’t reach.
Brady’s insane water intake
Brady also drinks an astounding amount of water at other points throughout the day. In fact, he’s admitted to drinking between 12 and nearly 25 glasses of water daily, so right there you have another obstacle. Assuming he means eight-ounce glasses, Brady is consuming up to 200 fluid ounces of water a day.
The general guideline for an adult male’s water intake is around 15.5 cups daily. Brady no doubt needs all that water due to his workout schedule, but your average office worker who isn’t a professional athlete won’t need that much. Of course, you could just stick with the lower amounts of water, which are well within the recommended range.
Two more factors can make Brady’s diet hard to follow. First, all of that food costs a lot of money. It’s a sad statement that eating so many vegetables and lean meats is expensive, but the cost may be too much for some. Second, he and his family have a personal chef. All Brady really has to do is eat what’s placed in front of him. That’s a lucky family!
What do dietitians say about Brady’s diet?
Brady’s daily diet gets mixed reviews from at least one nutrition expert. There are some great features you might want to copy, such as eating foods that are processed as little as possible, the substantial amount of vegetables, adequate hydration, and cutting added sugars that seem to infiltrate most meals and snacks.
Brady’s diet is heavy on anti-inflammatory foods, which is nutritionally awesome. However, the food restrictions — avoiding tomatoes and dairy, not combining certain foods, and passing on foods considered to be acidic — may be unnecessary.
Yes, if you’ve had a bad reaction to dairy, don’t eat it. Otherwise, there’s no reason to avoid it and may just be an extra restriction you don’t need.
Despite the restrictions and whether or not a “regular person” could eat like he does, you know what? Brady’s a legend. If he does so well on this daily diet, this should at least inspire you to eat more vegetables, drink more water, and cut down on added sugar.