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A Canva graphic showing Nutrition Information For Jiu-Jitsu Practitioners

Nutrition Information For Jiu-Jitsu Practitioners

Posted: February 23, 2022

As a Jiu-Jitsu practitioner, everything you have heard about nutrition is probably wrong. Most of the nutrition advice pumped out through mainstream media and social media is targeted towards people looking to lose weight.

Yes, Jiu-Jitsu is amazing, and for the average practitioner, losing weight is one of the incredible benefits. However, for the majority of Jiu-Jitsu athletes, Jiu-Jitsu alone isn't going to cut it when you're trying to maintain peak condition.

In this Ellis Academy blog, we have discussed the importance of nutrition for Jiu-Jitsu practitioners, what makes a good, healthy, and balanced diet.

Why is Nutrition Important For Jiu-Jitsu Practitioners?


Nutrition is important to get the most out of your performance in class. Unless you’re an elite or high-level athlete in the fitness industry, you probably don’t pay a lot of attention to your overall nutrition.

Nutrition is important in Jiu-Jitsu because it’s good for weight management, and it will help you get more out of each Jiu-Jitsu session – regardless of whether you are a competitor or hobbyist, you need to fuel your day/exercise correctly.

Nutritional Tips For Jiu-Jitsu Practitioners?


Protein is one of the most important dietary requirements for sporting athletes. The benefit of protein is endless. However, to determine your protein intake body size is one of the differences is what will affect it.

When wanting to get your nutrition on track, you can’t just use somebody else’s diet plan as nutrition is individual.

What your body type is, body fat percentage, activity levels in terms of Jiu-Jitsu, and activity levels outside of Jiu-Jitsu. All those factors will heavily determine what you should be eating more of, less of, and when you should be eating.


I can say with complete confidence that no sport has ever made me sweat more than Jiu-Jitsu. As a result, you must be wary of your water intake every day to prevent dehydration and cramping. The slightest bit of dehydration can have massive performance detriments.

Maximise Fruit And Vegetables

Fruit and vegetables are quickly and easily digested, provide a large amount of energy, and contain high quantities of nutrients. The greener your diet, the better you will feel, and the faster you will recover. Leafy green vegetables such as spinach and kale, as well as those like broccoli and cauliflower, are the most beneficial to overall health.


While not the primary source of energy for most types of physical activity, fats become important during long periods of exercise. The reason is that our capacity to store carbohydrates is quite low. Carbs can be stored in muscle or liver in the form of glycogen, but we can only store about 400-600 grams.

If you are competing or practising without the opportunity to refuel, fats could come into play as an energy source. While it’s not an ideal energy source, it’s par for the course when performing such demanding activity for such a long period of time.

What Should Jiu-Jitsu Practitioners Eat Before And After Training?

Before training, you need to avoid any foods that are going to digest slowly. Avoid pizzas or any form of slow-releasing carbohydrates. Make sure that you eat something quite light about 60-90 minutes before you train, where you can.

When thinking about after training, recovery and what you should be fuelling your body with, mainly anything you would consider to be a ‘fast carbohydrate’ should be your go-to, as during Jiu-Jitsu you lose a huge amount of energy and sugar in your body you need to replace those.

Jelly Beans and a protein shake make a great combination directly after training when maintaining a healthy diet. Suggestions for a meal would be white rice or white potatoes.

Royce Gracie Jiu-Jitsu

Our focus here at Ellis Academy is self-defence. Our programme is based on Royce Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, with easy fundamentals and instinctive movements, our system is designed for a real-life scenario, and we aim to teach it in the shortest possible time.

Our academy is situated in Surrey, to find out more about our self-defence programme and the real-life benefits of learning this ‘gentle art’ then don’t hesitate to get in touch.