Why NFL Players Shouldn't be Nutritionists

When Chicago Bears wider-receiver Bernard Berrian isn’t torching defensive-backs—and my fantasy team—he occasionally shares dietary advice with school children. His number one recommendation? Bacon and maple syrup. I know what you’re thinking—what the? Yeah, I’m calling a foul on this one too.

Yesterday during ESPN’s Mayne Event he shared some dietary advice with bunch of school kids. Here’s how it went:
Bernard: Hello kids.

Classroom: Hello!

Bernard: Do any of you know what it takes to make it in the NFL?

Redhead freckle-faced ginger-kid: Four-three forty speed?


Bernard: That always helps, but first you have to lay a foundation—make your body strong. Do any of you know how to do that?

Pretentious kid with overly dramatic delivery: Massive amounts of jumping-jacks?

Bernard: No, I’m talking about diet—the food you put in your body. Before ever game in college I used to eat bacon and syrup, and I brought some with me. Come on everybody let’s eat!

And the crowd goes wild.
What ensued was a melee of animal fat drizzled in hearty helpings of liquid sugar. Correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t these the types of things school food reforms are trying to knock out? It gets worse, here’s my favorite—well not-so-favorite—quote from Bernard:
It’s the perfect combination, you should eat it everyday and you’ll be in the NFL too.
Now, I’m not so Fuhrman-ized that I don’t realize this piece is intended for humor. I know Bernard Berrian isn’t really campaigning to make bacon and syrup one of the food groups, but still, what kind of a message does it send?

Especially—as Dr. Fuhrman puts it—a lot animal products aren’t exactly longevity-promoting:
For athletes, as I explain in Eat to Live, I recommend much more nuts and seeds, and a diet mugh higher in fat. Because keep in mind that bulking up is dangerous to one's longevity and power lifters and football linebackers often eat in a way that radically shortens their lives. If you were a weightlifter, for instance, you might improve your chances of muscle growth with more animal products then I recommend, certainly. But my point is too much animal products is not conducive to longevity. But if size is your only goal, go for it.
NFL players aren't the only ones with twisted diets, take a look at what Detriot Pistons' shooting-guard Richard Hamilton is eating.
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Comments (3) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
Mathias - January 22, 2007 10:05 PM

I want to say - thank you for this!

Carole Morden - January 30, 2007 12:48 PM

Bernard was funny, extremely so, and I doubt many kids watch the Mayne Event, still it is good to be ever vigilant about eating bacon combined with syrup. It is such a common practice. Good save.

Professional Sports Fan - November 24, 2010 2:48 AM

A great technique that will give you an advantage on the line is double team blocking. This play is simple, double up and push through.

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