This Is What Matt Stonie Typically Eats In A Day

If you've watched Matt Stonie on his immensely popular YouTube channel, you might wonder if he has anything like a typical day when it comes to eating. The 28-year-old competitive eater has consumed Korean fire noodles, a gallon of Jello, and  everything on the Chick-Fil-A menu for his 11.6 million subscribers.

The biggest moment of Stonie's career came in 2015, when he was the surprise winner of competitive eating's Super Bowl, the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest, held July 4 on Coney Island. He swallowed 62 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes to beat Joey Chestnut, the 12-time hot dog champ who is basically the Tom Brady of eating.

You might say Stonie is not a picky eater. He holds the world record for eating everything from pork ribs to pumpkin pie, according to the competitive-eating league called Major League Eating. In terms of calories, Stonie will consume in 10 minutes what ordinary people eat in a week. Even though this has more or less been Stonie's routine ever since he turned pro in 2011, the world's third-ranked competitive eater (as of this writing) hardly tips the scales at all, weighing 130 pounds. That number will temporarily shoot up to maybe 150 pounds, the day after a training session. Stonie told GQ it takes his body two or three days to return to normal.

The secret to competitive eating is hard work

What is Matt Stonie's superpower that allows him to eat so much and maintain his shape? Perhaps we can find a clue in one of his YouTube videos. He decided to start off the new year of 2019 right, with a cleanse. He drank "the world's healthiest smoothie" – a really big, healthy smoothie, with 1,592 calories – in just over a minute. After he was done, he joked that he had the ability to store all those vitamins for the whole year, so he wouldn't have to eat any more kale in 2019.

But seriously, Stonie does not have a superhuman metabolism. Being a competitive eater is hard work. "Those few minutes I spend on stage during a contest require hours and hours of physical training, mental discipline, and special dieting," he said on his website. Part of that work is a strict workout routine of cardio and weightlifting, Stonie told GQ. He usually goes for a run a couple hours after one of his calorie-heavy training sessions, Stonie revealed in a promotional video he made for 5 Hour Energy.

Stonie recovers from a contest with protein shakes

Stonie gave GQ the meal plan he follows right after a competition or a day of practice. In a nutshell, after dropping a food bomb in his stomach, he would bring his body back to normal with protein and vitamins. His first meal of the day (out of six) would be a low-calorie protein shake, a cup of coffee and multivitamins. Three hours later, he would have another protein shake and carrots. Then lunch No. 1: a protein shake and apples. Lunch No. 2, three hours later – you guessed it – another protein shake, with almonds on the side. Finally, Stonie enjoys a protein shake and slices of bread for dinner – we're starting to see a pattern here – followed by a bedtime snack of casein protein and almonds.

Right before a competition, a lot of people assume Stonie fasts – presumably so he can go in hungry, or with a big, empty stomach. But that doesn't work for him, Stonie told Thrillist. Instead, he has a gallon of liquid – usually Powerade – to wake up his stomach. Stanford doctor Connor O'Brien said the liquid before a contest helps the stomach "relax" and expand. Stonie chases all that liquid with some coffee, to make sure he relieves his bladder before a competition. He also downs a protein drink for nutrition. Stonie said it's a balance between keeping your stomach empty and your energy level up.

Speed eating: Don't try this at home

In the runup to a contest, Stonie tries to simulate the specific event with his training. Before the Nathan's hot dog contest, Stonie trained by eating 60 hot dogs three days a week, sometimes followed by a gallon of water to stretch his stomach even further (via KSDK). Stonie planned to prepare for a Hooters chicken wing contest, which he won in 2014, by eating 200 wings four or five times before the event (via USA Today).

We might need to tell you at this point: Don't try this at home. The dangers of the competitive eating regimen are well documented. Drinking a gallon or more of water in one sitting can dilute your body's sodium levels and induce seizures (via USA Today). Doctors sve eaay your kidneys can process only about one liter (one quart) of water per hour (via Healthline). Major League Eating is officially opposed to having its competitors train at home, even though many of them do it, and the organization urges its fans to not speed-eat at home. If your body is not used to the sudden onslaught of food, you can rip your esophagus or stomach (via KSDK).

Not all of Stonie's food challenges ended well

Watch one of Stonie's YouTube videos all the way to the end, and you'll find that even this experienced speed eater has had some harrowing experiences with food. Stonie may hold the Peeps-eating world record, having consumed 255 of the marshmallow chicks in five minutes, but sugary contests are the worst, he said. "The sugar rush messes with your body," he told Toronto Life

Some food challenges are so bad that even an eating machine like Stonie cann't finish them. He posted a video in October 2019 of a practice run with 13 pounds of poutine, the Canadian comfort food consisting of french fries, cheese curds and gravy. He was preparing for an upcoming World Poutine Eating Championship in Toronto. After 17 minutes, Stonie had to throw in the gravy-soaked towel. The salt was what stopped him short of finishing all 13 pounds of poutine. He titled this video "saltiest challenge ever," and he wasn't kidding. He calculated the sodium content of his poutine plate at 23,807 milligrams — that's almost one solid ounce of salt. The U.S. Health department recommends less than one tenth of that in a whole day (via CDC).

In the offseason, Stonie eats like everybody else

So, what does Matt Stonie eat during the offseason, when he isn't packing in tens of thousands or calories and then recovering with a lineup of protein shakes? The 5 Hour Energy video on his channel captures something that's rare for his fans to see: Stonie enjoying a very ordinary meal. He had a sensible portion of meat and vegetables from an Asian-style self-serve place. Other than that, Stonie answers that very question in a video produced by GQ to accompany a feature article about him. 

"In the offseason, I'm just a normal guy, eating normal food," he said. With Stonie trying to post to his YouTube channel once a week, he might not get the chance to be just a normal guy, eating normal food – like just one item off the Chick-Fil-A menu, or a normal-sized plate of poutine. Actually, unless he's in a contest, it seems safe to say that Stonie won't eat poutine ever again.