Best foods for skaters-different by country?
Maybe our Asian members and Amerasian members could speak to a question in my mind. When Mirai and caroline Z were tiny, it was of course easier. It seems the top Asian women are very tiny, thin always, YuNa, Mao, Akiko, Miki, on and on.
I wonder if Caroline or Mirai have given interviews. I think in the USA, the food supply is so damaged with chemicals, genetically modified foods, pesticides that act as phytoestrogens which clearly cause weight gain and cancers. Is Japan much better about banning the mess we have in USA? I wonder if Mirai and Caroline eat a traditional Asian diet or a mixed, or American diet. Their weight gain and development is different than the asian girls I see. Where I live, there is not a very visible Asian community tho. Even if Mirai and Caroline skate and work out, it seems they are developing like many causcasian girls. I am not picking on them-they are beautiful, but their development into women seems to have made jumping much harder.
I wonder what most figure skaters eat-or other high performance athletes like gymnasts? I know many starve them selves, but thery don't usually become champions. I know Akiko had an eating disorder, but she seems to have much energy and good weight now, thankfully. It made me wonder if the food rules were much stricter than what is happening in this country.
be careful. I predict that some members are going to accuse you of calling skaters fattie mcfatsos and that is not good.
I can't say for Caroline but I went to the same school as Mirai for a bit. I remember once that her breakfast was a brown paper bag of small apples (she didn't finish all of them) and her lunch was a lean slice of salmon teriyaki (her family owns a Japanese restaurant in our town too). She ate really healthy. From her instagram, it seems that she goes to Starbucks like other American girls like Ashley and Agnes.
I remember another poster bringing this topic up but there are a lot of Asian girls that don't survive the puberty monster too. More recently look at Kwak Min-jeong, Risa Shoji, Yuki Nishino...
I really don't think any sweeping conclusions can be made based on ethnicity, country or anything else. Look at Nina Mozer, then look at Vera Bazarova. Everybody is different (and not better or worse for that).
What happened to Min Jeong Kwak? The last I remember she (surprisingly) didn't make it out of the SP at 2011 Worlds.
Why do you think they would have ever been tiny if it they have been in the US and the food makes them bigger. I would see this as a better question if they lived in Asia their whole lives and them moved to the US and gained weight....
We are Asian. My daughter was tiny until puberty happened and she also builds muscle quickly and easily - but it is very visible muscle. My son was always in the higher ranges for height and weight. He looked chubbier but with puberty he became very long and lean. the more he works out, his muscles are very long and smooth looking.
But...she skates and he dances so that could be part of it as well.
Same genetics, different body types.
Missing Tdizzle and SDiggity
Off topic, but important (IMHO):
Originally Posted by skateluvr
I hope you do not believe that Caroline Zhang and Mirai Nagasu themselves are Amerasian. They are NOT Amerasian. They are Asian-American. Amerasian and Asian-American are NOT interchangeable terms. They have completely different meanings.
Oh, thank you Golden, I did not know...I will google both definitions. TY for correction.
As with everything, there's a range. Caroline and Mirai are well within the norms of Asian women. Would they have been tinier had they grown up in China or Japan. Quite possibly. Does hormone laden food source and the American diet have any effect? I'm sure it does. It doesn't change body type but as much as I hate to say it, it may effect body size and weight control. As with Caucasians, some Asian girls retains lithe figures while some do not. Asian women are not necessarily thin and petite. Mao should actually be considered an outlier among Japanese women, who typically have a stockier more solid build. There are several junior Korean skaters that look like Yuna clones so she might be considered the norm there. However South Korea is a very image oriented society judging from the rampant plastic surgery that goes on, so what you see there probably goes against nature. I've also seen some Chinese skaters who were extremely tall. You can even see extreme differences in siblings with the same genetic pool and environment doing the same things, like Michelle and Karen Kwan.
I think there's a variation of body types in the Japanese society. I've noticed some Japanese women are very petite and "stockier" than the elite Japanese skaters, but there are also some who are just as lean and "tall".
Originally Posted by jennyanydots
Um, would we be having this discussion about Ashley, Gracie, or Rachael and their European counterparts who they may share some distant ancestry with? People's bodies are just different with different genes (or sometimes even with the same genes, as loopy demonstrated), and I don't think it has anything to do with ethnicity. Some other Asian American skaters like Kristi Yamaguchi and Christina Gao are tinier than tiny and they lived their whole lives in North America...
Haha, perfect answer, thank you, Pasdedeux.
Originally Posted by Pasdedeux
I assure you that Asian women's bodies come in various shapes and sizes also. Not all of them are tiny--have you seen the Chinese women's volleyball players? The Korean women speed skaters? The Japanese national women's judo team? Plenty of tiny Asian girls that start out in something like figure skating or gymnastics hit puberty and outgrow the ability to compete at the highest levels since they can't consistently perform high level skills anymore--you just don't see them since for the most part they drop out before hitting the international competition level. Not really any different from girls in the west or anywhere else. It is true that genetically, a higher proportion of the east Asian female population tends towards sloping shoulders, slimmer hips, and smaller breasts which can help the physics of rotation in figure skating, but it also comes with a lighter skeleton and lean body mass that is lighter in muscle and lesser in raw power. That's broad brush and may or may not apply to a specific skater.
As for trying to link this to the U.S. food supply...are you aware at all of the famously unsafe Chinese food supply that has all the issues you mention and then some? Japan is safer but has also had its issues. No country eats in isolation anymore with all the import/export so this all seems a red herring anyway. What is constant and universal is that weight is determined by Energy Consumption vs Energy Expenditure. And more than the rest of us, top athletes have to match their overall diet and nutritional intake to their sport and training regimen. How that weight is distributed on the body is more a matter of family genetics. But as humans are essentially more similar than dissimilar, I can't see any reason why two theoretical skaters that are both 1.63 meters tall, 52 kg in weight, 20 years old, and with identical training regimens, would require a vastly different meal plan just because Skater 1 is Japanese and Skater 2 is North American (any ethnicity). The body needs protein and whether it comes from fish, chicken, pork or tofu matters little as long as portion is correct. Whether the green vegetable is spinach or seaweed is similarly not discriminated by the body. Naughty snacks full of fat exist everywhere though there are probably culturally more offerings in the U.S. Again, an athlete has to exercise discretion and willpower.
What does seem to be different in the U.S. are customary food portion sizes, at least for the general population, and a lack of "everyday" exercise. In Asia there is just a lot more walking, stair-climbing and other body-busywork one must do vs sitting in a car. But I think this is more an issue for us mere mortals, and less an issue for elite athletes doing serious training....anywhere.
Excellent post, bigsisjiejie.
Originally Posted by bigsisjiejie
Here is a somewhat related question:
In the bad old days of the Soviet Bloc, there were stories of national sports programs that were highly directed and regimented. Specifically, that the program officials would deliberately and systematically select athletes who fit detailed physical "requirements". This would mean that the athlete pool, in terms of the distribution of physical characteristics, might be different from that of a program that was "self-selected", so to speak. I wonder if this is still true in some skating countries, and to what extent? (Furthermore, such Type-A skating programs are probably more likely to maintain much stricter control over their athletes' diets).
I would say the American diet is not conducive to building lean muscle. Our food is packed with objectively unhealthy ingredients (i.e. sugars, pesticides, artificial coloring) and subjectively unhealthy ones (i.e. genetically modified foods). Skaters of Asian decent who represent Asian countries look noticeably slimmer, on average, than Asian American skaters and I think what Americans put in our bodies might be part of it.
My question was partially answered by bigsis. The obesity problem in America is one third. Sadly medication I must take has destroyed my naturally thin genetics. I eat little. I am aware that as one of the most capitalistic countries, we are behind nations like Germany. Europe used to be far ahead of USA on passing laws promoting organics and acknowledging that pesticides act as phytoestrogens. We could look at the rates of female cancers. I would have to research it better, but thought I would ask here.
As for Yamaguchi-either just lucky and maybe the food supply was not as tainted when she was competing, plus she likely ate traditional Japanese food and stayed away from empty carbs.
Given how much exercise Mirai and Caroline do, and how tiny Caroline is...I am surprised to see her bust development. I have read that breasts are a deathnell to rotating triples for women. A curvy body with breasts and hips is not welcome in most top ballet companies, even though I have known full figured lovely dancers. There it is more about Balanchine aesthetic that changed things. Starvation is so common with dancers.
I have read that girls in America in grade school are having menarche as early as 8 or 9 years old, and they are obese. These phytoestrogens are deadly time bombs for women, who have more fat than men in general, and especially due to the govt. allowing the entire food industry to basically kill people. I had uterine cancer, no one had it in my family, and I think it had to do with overweight. It is not usually deadly, and can be cured by surgery if not advanced. It was an old lady disease and I was not one. Little research is done, as breast and ovarian are the killers and they get the money, so not so much is known, as there is little interest. If caught, surgery fixes it, and I never have time to worry if it comes back. So far not. But I am at risk. Hence I am very curious about diets that keep Asain women so small.
It is so obvious that the pollution in air water and food is destroying health. Obesity is awful, and even lender women are getting female and other cancers at a high rate. I read that PCBs were even found in breast milk of Polar bear mothers! So npo where is safe, and if in Asia women are getting stockier or there are increasing estrogen related cancers, then it is likely changes in the food.
I don't get around, so I asked this as The girls from Asia that compete are all small and thin. Mirai and Caroline changed a lot. And I wondered if they tried to eat Japanese/Chinese diet with imported organic foods. It seems if you expect to do these jumps and compete with the Japanese girls, one would have to be supervigilant. Maybe it does not matter any more.
I am disturbed when I shop that I cannot find any prepared foods or low cost foods that are healthy. Fresh vegetables should be, but one has no proof here in America that "organic" or "natural" mean anything. Recently many products were tested for ingedients. Tea had grass leaves in it, every product was using fillers-lying is rampant and our FDA is failing us.
Europeans have always cared more and there is no huge Salinas Valley where there are thousands of acres on cauliflower or broccoli. The French are thinner I read due to smaller portions, food being higher quality, thus more expensive. I thought maybe Japan was stricter about pesticides and GMF's. I am disgusted with my country. THE FDA and big pharma as it changed my life.
I really get upset at all the chains who use huge food portions, knowing that a family of 4 in central America would be fed.
Ok, so there is a wide range of norms. But this Japanese women are getting stockier may have everything to do with pesticides or phytoestrogens. The first signs are obesity, then comes the female cancers and more. Thanks for intelligent feedback. There is no excuse for what has happened in America. We are a sick nation, and we will not survive, nor rise again with diabetes and Alzheimer bankrupting health care. I am envious of the European ways about food, and even Asian. But some countries like China seem to be copying the American way. With Global food giants who care only for bottom line, it is going to get harder to be healthy, unless you have a lot of food dollar money.
Every indicator is that we are a sick planet. So enjoy while you can. From global warming killing millions thru climactic upheaval, to food lies. I just bought walnuts. 10 oz was 8 oz when I weighed. And they were spoiled. I wish I could leave America and go to a healthy spot, where humidity/snow don't make me stay in. Everywhere this week is some mega storm or disaster.
Then I'm browsing and earth is losing its magnetic field? I missed all my time to travel and see these places I yearned to see. They said Glacier Park glacier won't be there in 10 years! I know off topic, but all of this was preventable and there are a handful of super rich people making the rest of the world suffer. Are these end times? I know... café thread question. I think America is responsible for losing our special mission (The Harbinger is a great book). We have not been a role model to the nations and we are paying the price in decline. Things changed so much in 30 years. It does not seem reversible I think I'll ask your opinions in Café thread.