Ray Lewis: Analyzing the Ravens Star's Intense, 50-Pills-a-Day Diet Program

G. HealyCorrespondent IIJanuary 13, 2012

SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 18:  Ray Lewis #52 of the Baltimore Ravens looks on against  the San Diego Chargers during their NFL Game on December 18, 2011 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)
Donald Miralle/Getty Images

Let me start off by saying that most of what I say in this article is meant to be tongue-in-cheek. I read a USA Today article about Ray Lewis and his intense dieting habits this morning, and, as a result, Ive been thinking about it ever since. 

I respect Ray Lewis on nearly any level that there is for one man to respect another man. I enjoy watching him play and I appreciate the effort he gives. He is a leader on the field and off the field. He is an intense guy, and, for the most part, that's half the draw to the guy. He is a unique character and always gives us something new whenever the camera is on him.  

After today though, I have to ask, what is this guy's deal? 

There is respecting your body, and dieting, then there is this thing that Ray Lewis is doing. 

I am reading this article this morning, and it's making me feel bad about the cream and sugar I put in my coffee.

"Man, Ray Lewis would destroy me for enjoying this tasty beverage." I thought to myself while reading. 

A little while later, after I took my daily mega man vitamins, I'm doing a workout in my basement, and I start thinking...

"Ray Lewis doesn't take mega mans, he takes 50 pills a day.... his body is a temple..." 

"Wait, wait, wait," I stop myself.

50 pills a day...50 Pills a day? 

All he wanted was some chips....
All he wanted was some chips....Donald Miralle/Getty Images

Now when I really start thinking about this, some of the things that I previously read start to feel a little weird. I started thinking... 

In my initial read, I’m just thinking, "Oh, 50 pills a day...okay, nothing strange here, dude is just an animal." 

Now, I'm starting to really think about some of this stuff and I have to ask the question:

"Am I the only one who thinks this is a bit...crazy?"

Let's take a more in depth look at some of the excerpts from this story. Please note that all quotes from this article are from the USA Today article written by Jarret Bell.

"In addition to a relentless year-round conditioning regimen and aggressive therapy for the toe injury that sidelined him for four games this season, Lewis estimates he swallows 50 pills a day."

Okay, we have established Ray likes his supplements. Lewis goes on to say:

"It's the same thing with your body. If you clean your body out so that it is not fighting against you, you rest better, think better and you're always light on your feet. I haven't had as much as a cold in three years. Bottom line, your body is a temple, and you have to treat it that way. That's how God designed it."

Now, I am not an abnormally spiritual man, and I don’t necessarily have any inside knowledge into how God wants us to treat our bodies specifically, but I will surmise that God doesn't expect us to drop 50 pills a day.

There is eating right and working out, then there is going to that next level. Part of me wants to ask the question: is running on 50 pills a day counter productive?

50 pills per day.

Moving on, I started thinking about how Ray Lewis helps those around him stay honest and in shape.

Ray said this in the interview:

"I'm watching these guys, with their cheeseburgers and stuff," he says. "And you're going to compete against me? Even if you're younger and faster, your fuel won't let you beat me."

I am thinking: "Okay, I wish I had someone to keep me accountable during those weak moments."

Then I continue reading:

"His diet is so ridiculous, even the people around him have to adjust," linebacker Terrell Suggs says. "It's crazy. Last week, I'm eating a bag of chips, and he throws 'em away."

So now if I interpret this right, Suggs is enjoying some chips, Ray Lewis walks up, grabs the chips and throws them out.

First read through I'm like : "Good for you Ray, Suggs should know better."

Not thinking anything too crazy yet, so I keep reading:

Lewis is a fish-and-vegetable man who hasn't touched pork in 12 years and has eaten beef twice during that span. He also doesn't drink soda or eat bread or sugar — except for scant exceptions. Like his cheat snacks, Twizzlers and Gummy Bears. "To keep living life," he says.

So, I read through this article in its entirety and didn't think anything weird. Then, later, I started thinking:

"What if Terrell Suggs' cheat food was that bag of chips?"

"What if Terrell had been waiting for those chips all day? What if that bag of chips was Terrell Suggs' award to himself for helping the Ravens make the playoffs?"

Now, the picture of how crazy this Ray Lewis diet is starts getting weird.

Later in the article, when his mother starts complaining about her son's intensity towards good health, what initially was read as a cute story of a son pushing his mother, now starts to look more like a cry for help:

"I stay mad at my mom because she spends so much time with God but doesn't trust God with her body," he says. "I don't want to see her body deteriorate. Every day, we've got to do something physical. It's mind, body and spirit."

"But if you're not practicing it," he says, "it's not going to survive."

Smith, 51, has a different version. She maintains that she does work out — Lewis has mapped out exercise and diet plans, signed her up at a gym and gets regular reports from her doctor — but typically not to her son's standard.

"This boy is working my nerves," Smith says. "He's been on me for years. Then every time somebody in our family passes, he really goes berserk.

"I know he's disciplined, and he does it out of love, but sometimes I have to ask, 'Who's the mama and who's the child?' "

By the time I was done pondering this Ray Lewis diet program, I went from someone who felt that, "They are lucky to have such a caring and health-minded individual around them."

To now thinking this guy is more like Deebo from the movie Friday.

"Ray's coming...hide your snacks."

It's funny right? And it's a bit crazy.

Before, if I met Ray Lewis, I probably would have been intimidated. He is an intimidating person.

Now, I'm not just intimidated, I'm self conscience about my weight and worried if the guy will smell sugar on my breath.

Like I'll walk into the room, and he will start sniffing and say, "Something smells funny around here Glen, what you eat for lunch?"

50 Pills a day. Wow. I will stop the analysis here.

Once I really started thinking about this article, my perception of some of the stuff he does on a day-to-day basis changed from admiration to just being bewildered at what he puts not only himself through, but also everyone around him.

It must be hard to live around such an intense individual. I'm willing to bet though, every Raven player, and a lot of their fans would do anything Ray said to do if it meant getting a Superbowl victory.   

My recommendation for Ray: Move up to 51 Pills a day, and start off with the most important one: a chill pill.


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