5 Sports Superstars You Didn’t Know Were Vegan
Where do you get your protein? Calcium? Won’t I become nutrient-deficient if I ditch meat, dairy, and seafood? These are common questions that have already been answered here on Vegan Tuck Box. But if you need more convincing that anyone can thrive without eating animals, take a look at these athletes who are pushing the boundaries of sports on a vegan diet.
1. David Haye
Anyone on this side of the pond knows that The Hayemaker is one of the best British heavyweight boxers of all time. His impressive physique and strength are proof enough that protein is not really an issue if you know where to look. A few years before bowing out of the ring, David Haye transitioned to veganism to help him recover from injury. He divulged to The Telegraph that the diet has made him a better athlete overall and even helped with other conditions such as eczema. It was noticeable during the last few years of his 16-year career that Haye may have lost some speed, but he made up for it with more power and precision.
2. Kyrie Irving
The NBA has been seeing a lot of their players adopt a plant-based diet; Kyrie Irving is one of them. The Boston Celtics point guard credits his energy boost to his new lifestyle and is hoping that it will give him a competitive edge over the others who still highly depend on meat. Aside from the obvious health benefits, Irving is a big believer in the ethical advocacy of veganism previously stating that, “Once you become awake, you don’t see that stuff anymore.”
3. Venus Williams
A few years ago, things were looking bleak for Venus Williams. After a series of injuries and withdrawals from important matches, the tennis superstar found out that she had an autoimmune disease that caused joint pain and chronic fatigue. Fast forward to today, the American tennis player has made an impressive comeback thanks to a predominantly raw vegan diet. Williams stated in an interview with Health.com: “Once I started, I fell in love with the concept of fueling your body in the best way possible. Not only does it help me on the court, but I feel like I’m doing the right thing for me.” Even her version of dessert is healthy and her favourite is an ice cream made of whole food ingredients and no sugar!
4. Lewis Hamilton
To complete the three main tenets of veganism is the four-time Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton. In a press conference, he mentioned that he chose to forgo eating meat because of the damage food production from animals is doing to our planet. As a professional racing car driver, Hamilton is aware of his carbon footprint and he does not want to add to that by supporting traditional and destructive practices.
5. Lionel Messi
Aside from basketball, there is also a rise in the amount of vegan athletes in football. Although not fully vegan yet, Lionel Messi follows a plant-based nutrition plan especially during the season. To sustain his performance, Barcelona’s star player was prescribed a diet of whole grains, fresh fruit and vegetables, olive oil, nuts and seeds which is a huge contrast from the standard diet most Argentinians consume. His dietary change has not taken away from his game as he is considered one of the greatest players of all time. Lionel Messi’s wages are also over £60m a year with Barcelona, not counting his endorsement deals with Adidas and Hawker; he is considered one of the highest paid athletes in the world. With so much influence let’s hope Messi uses it to persuade his fans to eat more plants and spare the lives of animals.
Feature specially written for vegantuckbox.co.uk
Prepared by EatsSmarter18