6 of the Best Athletes in the World who are Vegan

Yvonne O'Halloran

More and more professional athletes are turning vegan. And while many credit animal welfare or helping save the planet as big reasons why they started. The reality is the results are what these athletes speak about once they become vegan.

Faster recovery between matches, speedier rehabilitation from injury and clarity of mind and focus become key factors in their careers.

We feature 6 of the best in the world at what they do – who are vegan.

Venus Williams — Tennis player 

In 2011 Venus Williams tennis career almost ended, suffering from an autoimmune disease she was ready to give it all up.

But instead, the 7 time Tennis Grand Slam Singles winner turned to a vegan diet and turned her career back on.

Speaking to Health magazine, she gave her tips to turning vegan.

“I always tell people that you have to enjoy what you’re eating. If you’re eating a plant-based diet or a mixture of one, make sure you’re eating something you like. Find a restaurant, recipes, or join a community—that way, you can learn and enjoy your food. If you can’t enjoy your eating, I don’t know how fun life would be!” 

Lewis Hamilton — Formula 1 racing driver 

The world champion Formula 1 driver and one of the highest paid athletes on the globe turned to a vegan lifestyle just two years ago telling Business Insider magazine he feels “the best I’ve felt physically and mentally ever.”

He adds “Every time I eat, actually, I pray. So, whether it’s a couple of seconds, a minute or whatever you are praying for, take that moment.” 

Colin Kaepernick – Nike Cover athlete – NFL 

Kaepernick was named the face of Nike’s 30th Anniversary “Just Do It” campaign.

He almost took the San Francisco 49ers to a Super Bowl win his first year, but then a few short years later was dropped, after taking a knee during national anthems in protest of blacks being shot by police in the USA.

Recently he settled a collusion case with the NFL for keeping him out of the game. 

Griff Whalen – NFL Player

The one time Oakland Raider and now Baltimore Raven became Vegan a few years ago and credits the lifestyle for a lot of his success in sports.

Telling ESPN  in 2016 “nutrition plays a huge part in how quickly you can recover, how hard you can push yourself the next day.” 

Kyrie Irving – NBA Player 

In the past few years, there have been several stories about how NBA players are turning to vegan. One of the biggest names is Kyrie Irving.

This year Irving starred in an ad for “Beyond Meat” a health food company that produces plant-based meat alternative foods.

Irving has said the vegan diet he follows helps him recover faster between games and keeps him healthier and stronger. 

Jermain Defoe — EPL Footballer 

He is older than most professional football (soccer) players at 36. But he is still a force in the EPL.

At just 5” 6” he is a small target for big defenders and bruising tackles. But his ability to rebound and win trophies is his health and fitness.

The English forward claims that following a vegan diet allows him to understand his body more and thanked his girlfriend for helping him become a vegan. 

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Co-founded by Accredited Professional Nutritionist and Dietitian Yvonne O’Halloran, LivingVegan.com aims to provide a safe, informative space for anyone wishing to transition to and thrive on a vegan lifestyle. Aside from the proven health benefits, a whole-food plant-based diet has massive positive impacts for the environment and all the creatures we share our planet with. Our goal is to bring you news and resources that will dispel the myths associated with veganism and make the change second nature.

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