The Chilean miner’s diet

How the 33 managed to stay fit and healthy

How did the 33 Chilean miners emerge from 700 metres into the earth looking so healthy? After being discovered underground, their first outside food was a 200 mL serving of a medical, milk-based nutritional supplement called Supportan. Then, when a paramedic determined that the miners were dehydrated, they were supplied with liquid gels with protein and vitamins and told to nearly double the amount of water they drank. Their first real food was cereal with pear and applesauce. They were brought back up to a full menu of food slowly, to avoid refeeding syndrome, a potentially fatal complication of starvation. From then on, the miners were kept on a diet of about 2,300 calories a day and told to exercise for up to an hour a day or more. It was important to make sure they kept fit, so they could fit in the escape module. When they were ready, a typical daily menu consisted of liquid yogurt with toast and jam for breakfast; four protein cookies for a morning snack; a lunch of baked salmon with mashed potatoes and pineapple for dessert, washed down with a bottle of Gatorade; bread and dulce de leche for an afternoon snack; and baked pork with corn for supper with a tangerine for dessert. The miners said only one thing was missing: beer and wine.

Toronto Star

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