Gluten-free diet said to be behind Djokovic’s success

London, May 17: Having won 39 matches on the trot, Serb tennis champion Novak Djokovic has attributed his success on the tennis court not just down to his agility, baseline aggression and strong serve, but also to his diet.

Like an estimated 600,000 Britons, the muscular 23-year-old Serbian has coeliac disease, which means he is intolerant to gluten found in many grains.

Last month, Djokovic subscribed his new success on the court to his nutritionist, Igor Cetojevic, who has steered him away from wheat, barley and rye.

“He’s done a great job in changing my diet after we established I am allergic to some food ingredients, like gluten,” the Independent quoted Djokovic, as saying.

“It means I can’t eat stuff like pizza, pasta and bread. I have lost some weight, but it’s only helped me because my movement is much sharper now and I feel great physically,” he added.

As for statistics on coeliacs, around 1 in 100 people in the UK have the disease, but only an estimated 10 to 15 per cent have been diagnosed.

There is no cure or treatment for the disease. A change in diet is the only help.

In speaking publicly about the condition, Djokovic has become the world’s most famous coeliac, and living proof that sufferers cannot only lead relatively normal lives but can excel. (ANI)