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Australian Open champs Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams dish diet secrets

Novak Djokovic credits his improved tennis game to a gluten-free diet.
Michael Dodge/Getty Images

Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, and Serena Williams are among the tennis elite competing at the 2014 Australian Open this week. They're all superstars, but follow very different diets.

Novak Djokovic became the No. 1 player in the world shortly after switching to a gluten-free diet in 2010. He has since slipped to No. 2, but said he dramatically improved his stamina and agility after eliminating gluten.

“Mentally, you’ll be fresh, you’ll be happier, you’ll be calmer," he said. "Physically, you’ll be stronger, faster, more dynamic. Your muscles will work better."

Novak detailed the gluten-free diet's impact on his tennis game and health in his book Serve to Win: The 14-Day Gluten-Free Plan for Physical and Mental Excellence.

In contrast, Andy Murray follows a high-carb, 6,000-calorie-a-day sushi-centric diet. Murray also consumes large quantities of red meat, rice and pasta broken up into six meals throughout the day.

Roger Federer is one of the all-time greats due to his consistent domination. Federer's diet is low-fat, high-carb and features staples like cereal and low-fat milk.

Serena Williams, the No. 1 female tennis player in the world, switched to a raw vegan diet in 2012 after following the lead of big sister Venus. Serena recently began eating animal protein again and follows a high-protein, high-carb diet.

"I'll force myself to really carb up the night before, especially later on in the tournament," said Williams. "But carbing-up doesn't mean pasta. I'm more into brown rice or sprouted quinoa."

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