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NFL quarterback Russell Wilson eats 9 meals and nearly 5,000 calories a day to lose weight

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Russell Wilson and Ciara
Mat Hayward/Getty Images for Ten To One
  • NFL quarterback Russell Wilson eats nine meals a day as a weight loss tactic.

  • The unique diet leads Wilson to consume up to 4,800 calories per day.

  • The point of the massive caloric intake is to to supercharge Wilson's metabolism.

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson has a unique approach to weight loss.

Wilson, 32, eats nine meals per day, amounting to over 4,800 calories, his dietitian Philip Goglia told ESPN.

Goglia said Wilson adopted the intense eating routine in an effort to shed pounds and stay lean, improving mobility on the football field.

Wilson used to consume about 2,700 calories per day. That's below average for the typical NFL player, but about on par for the quarterback position, which doesn't require as much weight to play effectively.

Linemen, linebackers, and even some skill position players typically consume 3,000 to 4,000 calories per day.

But in 2017, Goglia changed Wilson's diet to resemble that of his big-bodied colleagues, and it helped him lose 10 pounds in just a few weeks.

Registered dietitian Bonnie Taub-Dix said the diet would only work for someone living Wilson's highly active lifestyle, as it requires about three or four hours per day of intense exercise to burn enough calories for weight loss.

"His job requires him to push himself to compete every day. Switching to nine meals a day might be necessary to consume 4,800 calories of healthy foods, and again, for most of us, nine meals a day would take up most of our time!" Taub-Dix told Insider. "At that calorie level, without extreme exercising, it's more like that you'd be gaining weight, not dropping pounds."

Russell Wilson
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

Wilson's nine meals are heavy in protein and vegetables

Wilson eats a lot, but not whatever he wants. Goglia ruled out a number of foods in Wilson's large diet.

"One of the important things with Russell and the elite athletes is that none of the foods he consumes are inflammatory foods, which means no yeast, no mold, no dairy, no gluten," Goglia told ESPN. "No dairy, no breads - muffins, bagels - nothing that is yeast, mold and gluten-bound. So starches are always one-ingredient guys like potatoes or rice or yams or oatmeal."

Wilson's diet emphasizes protein, which is featured in every meal either through meats, fish, or nuts.

  • Meal 1: Tablespoon of almond butter, tablespoon of jam

  • Meal 2: Two cups of cooked oatmeal, six whole eggs, a fruit, one chicken breast

  • Meal 3: A fruit, 12 almonds

  • Meal 4 : Eight ounces of protein (two chicken breasts), a yam OR a cup of rice OR a potato AND a vegetable

  • Meal 5 : Eight ounces of protein (two chicken breasts), a yam OR a cup of rice OR a potato AND a vegetable

  • Meal 6: A fruit, 12 almonds

  • Meal 7 : A fruit, 12 almonds, whey protein

  • Meal 8 : Fish or steak and salad or vegetables

  • Meal 9 : Fruit and tablespoon of blackstrap molasses

Taub-Dix said he might be getting too much protein, however, and it could lead to diminished energy if it's not balanced out with more carbs.

"Carbs are a source of fuel that active people need and the right carbs can not only provide energy, but can also provide important nutrient-rich calories," Taub-Dix said.

Read the original article on Insider