A short while ago on CBSSports.com, Ken Berger had an extensive three-part analysis on diet and the eating habits of NBA athletes. One of the players interviewed was Blake Griffin. Here is an excerpt:
Griffin, the Clippers’ high-flying All-Star, is more muscle head than candy head. Nutrition has always been a priority, as you can tell from his fast-twitch muscles and shredded physique. But last season, he was looking for something that would kick it up a notch. He found Paleo, or at least, a version of it.
His Atlanta-based business manager, Lorne Clarke — who competes in CrossFit, a fast-growing workout sport in which Paleo eating is prevalent — got Griffin to join him for a 100-day Paleo challenge. Griffin did a modified version, incorporating some rice and other quality starches (sweet potatoes, occasional white potatoes) to fuel his activity level. He’s stuck with it ever since.
“Nutrition has been huge for me,” Griffin said. “I don’t exactly do Paleo, but I still don’t eat gluten.”
When Griffin and Chris Kaman were teammates before the 2011 lockout, they worked with LA nutritionist Meg Mangano to focus their eating habits for performance. Kaman, now a Laker, has since become one of the biggest proponents of a low-carb, high-fat, grass-fed nutritional program that his new team implemented last season.
Mangano has since been hired by the Clippers, who this season offered players the chance to take blood tests to detect food sensitivities and allergies. Griffin said about half the team took the test, and several players — including himself –learned they have some level of gluten sensitivity. Chris Paul was crestfallen to learn he’s allergic to eggs, Griffin said.
“She does all our meals at the hotel, on the plane and in the locker room,” Griffin said. “Every time we have a meal, there’s gluten-free options. Everybody’s taking care of themselves. They make it really easy.”
On a recent road trip to Houston, the postgame buffet featured a giant tray of gluten-free pasta and ground turkey, plus plenty of vegetables and fruit.
“Some guys do the buffet thing,” Griffin said. “You have an option to have a separate plate made up for you, but I like to make my own plate. There’s options for everything.”