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Plant-Based Whole Foods for Athletes - YES

I want to dispel, rather briefly, the common myth that plant-based whole foods are not an adequate source of protein for athletes. Eating a WFPB (Whole Food Plant Based Diet) diet just makes sense. If you are an athlete, how could you possibly not consider eating this way. When we lift weights our body becomes inflamed, tears occur in the muscle fibers, and eating whole foods like fruits and vegetables, which are full of anti-inflammatory nutrients, and antioxidants, help our muscles to recover and rebuild quickly after workouts. We are constantly bombarded with commercials and marketing ploys advising that we need more protein in order to achieve optimal fitness - nothing could be further from the truth! The average American gets way more protein than needed - on the upward side of 30%-40% per day, and this seems to be an issue with athletes as well. So what's the problem? Well 5%, possibly less, may be sufficient for the average individual to consume daily, and 10% or less for an athlete. You do the math. Too much protein in the diet can be dangerous, as these continuous high levels put stress on our bones, kidneys and liver. As I learned in my classes at eCornell, “Adults cannot increase the amount of muscle or other body protein by eating an excess amount of protein.” Muscle mass, as described in our course, consists of genetics (which we have no control over), hormones (which can be manipulated), and the frequency of which the muscles are loaded, as in weight bearing (which we have control over). When we choose to consume animal protein, as in beef or chicken, these animals are loaded with growth hormones, which we then ingest when we consume them. The long term effects of consuming these growth hormones may have long term effects on our health such as cancer, aging, and acne. We have better options - Broccoli has more protein than beef, and no added hormones or chemicals. Add into the mix that those who consume a WFPB diet feel better with increased energy, faster recovery and better performance. If the above is not enough to entice an individual to ditch the animal products, look at the career of Robert Cheeke, and the plethora of elite athletes who have attained the highest levels of athletic performance all while consuming a WFPB diet. As a trainer and fitness expert, what more needs to be said. The science does not lie. As an aside - try finding science on the the multitude of supplements being touted daily - unregulated, untested, garbage. WFPB - all natural, packed full of everything the human body needs to perform at optimal fitness, packaged beautifully and no chemicals or fillers required. Complete Nutrition.

Stay Healthy,


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