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Podcast – Do Pro Athletes Burn Carbs or Fats? with Matt Fitzgerald

Podcast Do Pro Athletes Burn Carbs or Fats with Matt Fitzgerald
Podcast Do Pro Athletes Burn Carbs or Fats with Matt Fitzgerald

Podcast – Do Pro Athletes Burn Carbs or Fats? with Matt Fitzgerald

Description: Between the latest online fads and the crazy media headlines, it’s easier than ever to get confused about your health. If you want to make better decisions about your health today so you can feel better and live longer, you’ve come to the right place.


On this episode we cover what the best ways to fuel your active body and your active muscles are. Do you have to choose between carbs and fat, and do you know which one is better for fueling your body? Athletes aren’t the only people that need to consider the best way to fuel an active body. Choosing the right fuel makes a big difference in overall health for everyone. I’m joined today by Matt Fitzgerald, endurance sports coach, nutritionist and author of over 20 books. His work with pro level and Olympic athletes has given him superior experience and knowledge of what  works best for some of the best performing individuals in the world when it comes to fats, carbs, healthy diet, and the importance of food variety. Even if you aren’t a high performing athlete, you surely want to have more energy, get more out of your health, and figure out what the best diet is to achieve your goals.


On this podcast we’re covering five major tips that will help you make the best food choices for higher energy and a healthier body, including one that I can guarantee you’ve never heard before! From the best source of energy to burn quickly to the importance of choosing high quality foods, Matt’s experience and knowledge will inspire you to start making better food choices for your body today. We cover everything from the keto diet to food favorites of elite athletes around the world and how you can apply their food choices into your everyday diet. If you’ve ever felt like you have to choose between enjoying the food you eat or eating the right foods, you need to listen to my conversation with Matt Fitzgerald.


Key Takeaways:

[1:10] Today’s topic is the best way to fuel your active body — is it fats, carbs, or a combination of the two?

[2:30] Introducing Matt Fitzgerald, who responds to a letter I received from a listener who wrote in for advice regarding the keto diet and her thyroid.

[4:43] Which diet really works for world class athletes? Some experiences that have shaped Matt’s views on the best way to fuel an active body.

[9:18] Matt explains why the keto diet is a risk that is not worth taking for elite athletes, including Olympic cycling medalist Georgia Gould.

[10:57] Is fat a superior fuel? Matt explains why the denser content of fat does not make up for the inefficient way that it is metabolized.

[14:16] Lasting energy versus fast energy — how you can balance sustained energy with the more quickly spent energy that comes from sugars.

[16:46] Energy to burn — whether it comes from fat or carbs — at a higher capacity is the main goal of high performing athletes — just look at the winners of the Boston marathon.

[20:31] Are elite athletes genetically superior to everyone else?

[23:22] Everyday energy and fueling exercise is important for the health of everyone, not just elite athletes.

[26:25] Raw talent will only take an elite athlete so far — the next level of world class success requires raising the diet bar.

[30:26] A higher quality diet is going to yield higher quality results every time, and just because something works well doesn’t mean something else isn’t going to work even better.

[33:40] The Endurance Diet’s recurrent themes and habits from carb-eating endurance athletes from around the world.

[36:10] Eat everything — different types of foods check off different boxes and a healthy diet leaves no stone uncovered.

[39:54] Diet Cult and a look at why most fad diets are based on restrictions unreasonably applied to foods that humans have been eating for centuries.

[45:02] Eat quality — meaning that if a food makes you healthier, then it is high quality, regardless of what the food contains.

[48:56] Eat a carb centered diet — include high quality carbohydrate rich foods in almost all of your meals and snacks.

[50:50] Eat enough — don’t worry about counting calories or tracking your intake as much as you are making sure that you are eating the right amount of food.

[55:24] Individualization — work with what works best for your body and stop eating foods that don’t improve your overall health.

[1:00:36] Matt explains the value of choosing foods that you like to eat and keeping high-quality favorites in your diet.

[1:05:03] Do you have a topic you’d like me to cover? Contact me on Facebook or Instagram using #medicalmyths.


To learn more:

Dr. Christianson on Instagram

Dr. Christianson on Facebook

Integrative Healthcare

Matt Fitzgerald

The Endurance Diet: Discover the Core 5 Habits of the World’s Greatest Athletes to Look, Feel, and Perform Better by Matt Fitzgerald

Diet Cults: The Surprising Fallacy at the Core of Nutrition Diets and a Guide to Healthy Eating For the Rest of Us by Matt Fitzgerald

Racing Weight — Matt Fitzgerald’s blog

Diet Quality Score Calculator



“Too many ‘experts’ focus too much on science. Science is great but it’s really limiting in its real world applicability.” — Matt Fitzgerald


“You can think of your body as a transmission with five gears. When you go on a ketogenic diet, you lose fifth gear. Overdrive is gone.” — Matt Fitzgerald


“An elite athlete knows the importance of making the right diet change the first time.” — Matt Fitzgerald


“Elite athletes don’t count calories — they eat by feel, and they trust when they feel full.” — Matt Fitzgerald


“We’re all human and basically the same foods work well for all of us, but within that space there is a lot of room to find out what your perfect formula is.” — Matt Fitzgerald


“If you are not happy with your diet, no matter how textbook it might look, you’re not eating right.”

— Matt Fitzgerald