Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Tonal Tuesday - Eat, Drink and Be Singing - A Guide

One thing I know for sure is that as soon as I commit any thoughts on eating and drinking before singing, someone will have an opposite that works wonders for them.  It won't make either of us right or wrong but will point out that what works for one is not always a panacea for another.  These are in general ideas that work for MOST.

1. NO ALCOHOL at least 2 hours before singing.  One of the biggest reasons for this is the smell which can really be strong and will bother someone near you.  Alcohol and driving isn't great for being sharp and on your toes.  It is the same for singing.

2. NO DAIRY before singing.  Dairy, including butter, will cause mucous to be produced and that will interfere with your being able to sing clearly.

3. EAT VEGGIES - Complex carbohydrates give long lasting energy as well as contributing to overall general health.  You might want to stay away from broccoli and cabbage types as they can cause discomfort for some afterwards not to mention that little green bits in your teeth aren't cute.  Green & yellow beans (not brown beans - don't get confused here), salad, peas and other legumes are generally okay.

4. EAT LEAN CHICKEN, FISH, TOFU or PASTA - Many singers prefer a whole wheat or gluten free pasta with olive oil and light spice (no garlic for obvious reasons) but a a lean meat is fine.  Many singers are certain that olive oil really helps their ability to sing well.

4. EAT FRUIT - Here again there are some that many find great for keeping the throat clear.  Some find citrus causes mucous or even dryness while others are fine with it.  Generally, "watery" fruits such as watermelon, grapes, peaches and pineapple are better than the harder apples and bananas which I find sticky in my throat.

5. TEA & COFFEE vs WATER - Again here it is your choice.  I have no difficulty with tea & coffee.  I find tea with a bit of lemon is lovely for me.  I however, don't drink coffee before singing.  Water is okay but not right before you sing.  Something about bathroom breaks in concerts comes to mind here.

WHEN - Ideally 2 hours before singing.  If you are invited to dinner and then have to sing, you had better stick to light and clear items.

WHY - Singing is an athletic endeavour.  You need to eat well to enhance your health for stamina and ability.  Following an athletic diet is really ideal.

WHERE - May I be so bold as to suggest that the best pre-concert meal is best served at home.  Fast food can be laden with sugar, fats and carbs that may not be ideal for helping you feel your best.

Sugars are really not good for us anyway but really not good before singing.  Think athlete and you will eat properly.  Enjoy the "After Glow" even more as no rules apply then!

No comments: