Watching Adam Richman doing his job isn’t easy. On many days, most of us want to be in his position as the foodie-host gorges on pounds of delicious food. Then, for other challenges, he subjects his stomach to some of the world’s spiciest dishes, making you reconsider the thought.
Since 2008, he has hosted three seasons of Man V. Food, trying and tasting iconic American dishes across the country. Last night, the fourth and final season of the show — Man V. Food Nation — premiered in India on TLC at 10 pm. But this time, the show isn’t about Richman doing all the eating. “I feel a spectacle diminishes over time. I have done 59 challenges; and there’s only so much of the same guy doing the same stuff that anyone can bear,” says Richman. “After a point, one can overstay their welcome on TV if they just keep doing the same things.”
As the last season of his show airs in India, Richman tells us how he managed to eat all those meals and what he lives on when he’s not on camera.
How did you prepare yourself for the food challenges?
If I was going to eat something rich, then I balanced that with smaller, blander stuff that’s gentler on my system. Copious amounts of water and exercise do help. If I was taking a challenge of spicy food, then I would try to be gentle on my body. The rest of the time I usually go with oatmeal, egg whites and lot of green salads. I would always take an antacid prophylactically ahead of time just to abate any stomach acid.
Were there specific dishes that you ate to ready your stomach for the incoming meal?
I generally kept my diet simple and as light as possible because on camera I ate lot of unhealthy stuff. I recommend plain white rice and bananas prior to food challenges, in terms of creating a buffer and an absorption element to avoid any kind of caustic burns.
Did you follow a certain exercise regimen for the duration of the show; something that heavy eaters can rely on?
When I was on the road, I made sure I kept my cardio high. I did an hour a day, which usually was broken up into two workouts. I also did a lot of leg and back-strength training. Those are your biggest muscles and help elevate your metabolism the most. I would try very diligently not to eat late. If I ever did, I would always get delivery or take-out of some steamed vegetables, fruits, some trail mix, nuts, granola bars or something like that. Usually, if I’m eating late, I try to make sure that whatever I eat is a whole food item.
A lot of Indian food is quite heavy on the stomach. Have you had a chance to taste any?
I like to think that I’m fairly well-experienced in terms of eating and understanding Indian food. When I’m not filming, I eat a largely
vegetable and fish-based diet, and Indian food is extremely conducive for making really delicious vegetables. It has these deep flavours and at the same time it is simple. I think you’ll definitely see me in India sooner rather than later.