Dietary advice for chess players

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John Upham
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Dietary advice for chess players

Post by John Upham » Wed Jun 17, 2009 10:45 pm

I wonder if anyone can provide expert opinion on the advice contained in

http://www.craftofchess.co.uk/eat_to_wi ... px?aid=410 :?:
Last edited by John Upham on Thu Jun 18, 2009 8:48 am, edited 1 time in total.

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JustinHorton
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Re: Dietary advice for chess players

Post by JustinHorton » Thu Jun 18, 2009 8:38 am

Is that fish oil or snake oil?
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Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Dietary advice for chess players

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Thu Jun 18, 2009 1:00 pm

I used to do Food Chemistry, and still referee papers on it. Omega 3 oils are supposed to be good for you, and what he says about DHA is reasonable (not to be confused with the hormone DHEA, which is something different). "8 capsules of pharmaceutical grade fish oil" sounds a lot. It would help if he said what size the capsules are; bear in mind you may spend a lot of time analysing on the toilet if you take too much fish oil!

The important thing is to have a balanced diet, and you should not eat heavily before a game as you may fall asleep, but if you don't eat enough, the blood sugar may go too low and you still fall asleep. I sometimes eat a banana after 2 - 3 hours of a game, which I think would help. The author doesn't distinguish between "available carbohydrates" ("sugar") and "unavailable carbohydrates" (fibre). Sugar (as in what you put in your tea) will give a burst of energy, which will wear off fairly quickly. Fibre (in the right balance) is meant to be good for the digestive system. Coffee and tea (and some colas) contain caffeine which keeps you awake, but if you overdose, you get twitchy and irritable, so it's difficult to concentrate, and you may fail a drugs test.

Everybody is different - so everybody needs a different diet. Nicotine aids concentration but there are drawbacks to taking it. You will probably play better if you are awake and sober during the game, but not all awake and sober players will beat all sleepy drunks.
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Alex Holowczak
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Re: Dietary advice for chess players

Post by Alex Holowczak » Thu Jun 18, 2009 1:23 pm

Kevin Thurlow wrote:Coffee and tea (and some colas) contain caffeine which keeps you awake, but if you overdose, you get twitchy and irritable, so it's difficult to concentrate, and you may fail a drugs test.
:lol:

I can see the headline now: "Anand banned for two years for coffee overdose"

It would just be one of those things where, when the media gets hold of it, everyone just laughs at the crazy mad chess people. Not good for the image of the game.

Ian Thompson
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Re: Dietary advice for chess players

Post by Ian Thompson » Thu Jun 18, 2009 1:52 pm

There's also this: http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=4335

I thought most of it was just stating the obvious though.

John Moore
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Re: Dietary advice for chess players

Post by John Moore » Thu Jun 18, 2009 4:47 pm

Intake of fluids - and not just my favourite brand of lager - does have to be judged carefully by the older player if there is a possibility of the game finishing with increments.

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