You Don't Need Meat - Enjoy the Performance Benefits
In my last installment of the “You Don’t Eat Meat” micro series (if you will) I merely humbly brought to our community’s attention the release of the film The Game Changers. I hope that many vegetarians and vegans encourage their omnivore friends—in a non-self-righteous way—to take a look at the documentary themselves to decide if they need to continue on their meat-consuming path.
Many high-performance athletes have found they don’t need to partake in animal flesh to pursue their career. Just some examples:
Jack Wilshere (football)
Meagan Duhamel (ice skating)
Venus Williams (tennis)
Nate Diaz (UFC)
Georges Laraque (ice hockey, retired)
Lewis Hamilton (F1)
Chris Smalling (football)
Barny du Plessis (body building)
Fabian Delph (football)
Scott Jurek (marathon runner)
Colin Kaepernick (american football)
Amanda Riester (bodybuilder & boxer, retired)
Jermain Defoe (football)
Patrik Baboumian (weightlifter)
What about the rest of us?
Well, perhaps it goes without saying, but any changes in nutritional intake should be undertaken in consultation with your doctor. Any nutritional deficiencies can be prevented or almost entirely mitigated, however it is always best to seek professional advice. Certainly, no doctor worth their salt will say you must eat meat in order to make up for any nutritional shortfall; it may just be a matter of increasing the proportion of mushrooms, legumes, nuts or other rich sources of vitamins and minerals in your diet. And, it is always a good idea to reduce the percentage of processed foods, while increasing pure/raw fruits and vegetables.
This note of caution notwithstanding, you can generally expect to see the following results:
A vegan diet can help reduce inflammation
You may feel more energised; vegan foods tend to be low-GI (a good thing)
Your sleep may improve (the protein spike often caused by a “good old steak” in the evening is, in fact, inadvisable)
Studies show strong correlation with a vegan diet and reduced incidence of certain cancers
Heart disease risk, on average, is reduced
You will likely lose weight
The health of your Human Gastrointestinal Microbiota (Let’s say “Gut Community") will be improved
And, let’s not forget:
You will cease to be a participant in the horrors of factory farming
Plus, you will have a markedly reduced ecological (including carbon) footprint
So, if you’re still a meat eater, please – give this change in dietary lifestyle a chance. You’ll never look back.