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How to eat like a female footballer

by Freya 4 minutes read

Last updated: 26 Apr, 2023

To celebrate England’s National team - The Lionesses, making it into the semi-finals of the 2022 Euros after beating Spain 2-1, we are looking at the diet of a female footballer player.

Do you want to know what fuels the lionesses for the energy and fight during a game, we’ve got you covered. We researched what the lionesses eat themselves as well as other successful female footballers to get the best answer possible.

Karen Carney

We will begin with ex-England Women's player Karen Carney, in 2017 she told Healthista all about what she ate to fuel her football career.

Carney previously played for the national team as well as Chelsea, Arsenal, and the US’ Chicago Red Stars, while helping England make its way to the World Cup quarter-finals several times.

At the time of the interview she was Chelsea’s player of the year and was also the first female England player to feature in seven consecutive tournaments.

Carney’s diet is strict and high in protein.


  • Scrambled eggs on their own

  • Yoghurt


  • Lunch was premade for Carney, it included fish, chicken and vegetables or salad


  • Eggs or pancakes

  • Chicken or fish with vegetables


  • Fruit

  • Nuts

  • Cereal bars

Alex Greenwood

England and Manchester City’s defender Alex Greenwood is next, she spoke to Women’s Health all about her diet that powers her successful football career.

Unfortunately, Greenwood didn't share what she has for lunch, but it’s protein packed for sure.


  • Porridge or yoghurt

  • Protein shake when not training


  • Chicken and vegetables or sweet potato


  • Yoghurt

  • Fruit

  • Energy/sport drinks on game days

Stephanie Houghton MBE

Next, we look at ex-England captain, Stephanie Houghton who holds MBE status and told Women’s health about her strict diet. Houghton had to give up her captain status recently due to recurring injuries, it was passed over to Leah Williamson for the 2022 Euros.

Houghton plays for both England and Manchester City where she also holds captain status, bringing both teams to success.

With intense training sessions comes a specially formulated diet tailored by Manchester City FC’s very own nutritionists.

Her diet with no surprise includes high amounts of protein and carbohydrates to ensure she performs at her best.


  • Cereal

  • Toast

  • Eggs - including her favourite, poached eggs

  • Meat

  • Yoghurt


  • Toast

  • Eggs

  • Meat

  • Yoghurt

  • Lasagna

  • Chicken and baked sweet potatoes


  • Chicken fajitas

  • Chicken and salad

  • Chilli con carne and rice

  • Sweet potato saag aloo

  • Fishcakes and veg


  • Skimmed Latte

  • Yoghurt

  • Protein shake/smoothie

  • Banana

  • Rice cakes with peanut butter

  • Nuts

  • Protein bars

Kiera Walsh

England and Manchester City’s midfielder Kiera Walsh gave The FA an insight to her nutrition advice and diet that get her ready for the pre-game season.

Walsh helped Manchester City secure the Continental Cup in 2014 and has played a crucial role to get the England ladies to the 2022 Euro’s semi-final.

Let's take a look at what she ate to reach these victories, she aims to have a high protein and carbohydrates diet.


  • Porridge with fruit and orange juice

  • Scrambled eggs with beans


  • Chicken sandwich

  • Rice

  • Salad

  • Greek yoghurt


  • Chicken, pasta and vegetables


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