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MAF in a Nutshell

Phil’s new journal article in Sports Medicine explores the topic of unhealthy athletes and striking the ultimate balance.

Dr. Phil Maffetone’s latest scientific paper has been published in the journal Sports Medicine under the topic Current Opinion.

With co-author Prof. Paul B. Laursen, the article explores the subject, “Athletes: Fit but Unhealthy.” The provocative paper is one of the first to discuss and clear up the paradox between the terms “health” and “fitness,” clearly defining that these two notions can be very different states.

The article also stresses how lifestyle affects health and fitness, in particular how high-intensity and -volume training and poor diet add stress and negatively impact the mind-body connection.

Key points of the article include:

  • Fitness and health can be defined separately: fitness describes the ability to perform a given exercise task, and health explains a person’s state of well-being, where physiological systems work in harmony.
  • Too many athletes are fit but unhealthy.
  • Excess high training intensity or training volume and/or excess consumption of processed/refined dietary carbohydrates can contribute to reduced health in athletes and even impair performance.

“Athletes can be unhealthy,” says Dr. Maffetone. “And while it’s sad, this puts into perspective why athletes sometimes have heart attacks or even die during a race.”

This journal publication is essentially the “MAF Method in a nutshell,” he says.

Various media have shown interest in the new article, including Competitor .

To read the article directly, click here.