More and more athletes are deciding, for different reasons, to abandon animal products to focus their diets on plant-based foods. The most curious thing is that many vegan athletes insist that this modification in their meals has brought them great results. Sports nutrition is a big issue for athletes in general, and for vegan athletes there´s no exception. Here you will meet 6 sports stars who chose a healthy life and have driven into plant based-diets.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady confessed that he follows the 80/20 rule when it comes to his diet, meaning that 80 percent of his plate is plant-based, made up of vegetables or rice and grains, while the other 20 percent is made up of lean proteins such as fish or chicken. This may be the transition for a fully vegan athlete way-of-life. In terms of sports nutrition proteins are important, yo can learn more in Best 9 Organic Protein Powder to Fill Your Exercise Day with Energy to a vegan alternative.
According to Brady, who leads the NFL in air yards and touchdowns at age 44, said this diet helps him stay in shape as he ages. Do vegan athletes have the secret to eternal youth?
Lewis Hamilton decided to follow a vegan diet and become a vegan athlete five years ago with the idea of betting on the consumption of plants instead of animal products. He himself claims to be an animal lover on his Instagram account.
So far so normal, the surprising thing is that in June 2020, he surprised everyone by announcing that he had also changed his diet to his dog, Roscoe, an English bulldog that accompanies the Formula 1 driver wherever he goes for several years.
The current number 1 in the world, Novak Djokovic, who has already completed his sixth Wimbledon, his change of diet was a great leap in his performance after giving up gluten and then betting on a completely plant-based diet, which has not prevented him from being the number one tennis player and winning 20 Grand Slams.
Djokovic says it wasn't until he began working with Dr. Igor Cetojevic, and modified his diet, first eliminating dairy, gluten and refined sugar, so that he felt relief. In the years that followed, he eliminated all animal products and now eats only plant-based foods so he already became a vegan athlete.
Tennis player Venus Williams says that switching to a vegan diet changed the condition of her skin and health for the better, but she still enjoys eating junk food. Following a healthy lifestyle has helped her improve her athletic performance and control the autoimmune disease she was diagnosed with in 2011 called Sjörgen's Syndrome. Eating only non-animal foods allows Williams to live with his condition without the need for medication. In addition, research also supports the improvement in the appearance of her skin. Venus Williams confessed that veganism transformed her life: "It made my skin amazing."
She also created a vegan products company that includes dietary supplements suitable for vegan athletes. If you want to know more about vitamin supplements you can read Organic Vitamins: 6 Options to Supplement Your Vegan Diet.
The Argentine striker, who played for Manchester City and Barcelona and recently announced his retirement from soccer, admits that he no longer eats meat, pasta or sugar and that, thanks to this, he is fitter and does not get injured as much.
For him, being a vegan athlete is not only a way of eating, but a philosophy of life. According to the player himself, he would only eat meat in case of life or death and his blood tests only show minimal deficiencies of vitamin B-12, which he replaces with sports supplements.
In other values such as iron, cholesterol and other vitamins, his values are much better than those of his teammates. Other footballers, such as Leo Messi himself, have made major variations in their diet as a result of injury problems. Some small steps for a healthier life can start in snacks, you can learn more about in Post Workout Snacks: Which Are the Best Options For You?
Mike Tyson, now back to eating only wild meat, claimed in his vegan days to be "in better shape than ever" at 53 and attributed it to his vegan diet and a rigorous exercise routine. "Becoming a vegan athlete has given me the opportunity to live a healthy life. I was so congested from all the drugs and cocaine that I could hardly breathe," he admitted.
He also acknowledged that since changing his diet, his stress and arthritis problems have been significantly reduced. "I had high blood pressure, I was almost dying and I had arthritis. Becoming a vegan helped me eliminate all those problems from my life," confessed 'Iron Mike'. The former world heavyweight champion was a vegan for nearly a decade.
Mike will probably have no problem with fish oil products, but many vegans do, so here you can also read Vegan Omega 3: Different Natural Alternatives to Skip Fish Oil
Now, I do not intend this to be mere illustration of an almost perfectly healthy life. It's just an impetus to show you that there are no excuses if the goal is to be a vegan and also an athlete. You may wonder, how to start then?
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If you were hesitant to face a vegan diet because you are an amateur athlete or close to the high performance, now you can see how that is not a limiting factor. The secret is to know how to complement your diet well, be informed, learn and why not, look at the examples of these great sports stars.