One of the biggest misconceptions about going vegan is that you’ll have to sacrifice your form and athleticism. However, you’ll be glad to know that’s just not true. In fact, there are several top athletes and bodybuilders who live completely vegan.
Although being a vegan athlete means getting a little creative with your diet, here at Willow, we’re prepared to offer more than innovative vegan dishes—we want to give you the advice you need to succeed as a vegan athlete. Read on to learn the top 4 vegan athlete diet tips.
Willow Vegan Bistro serves nutritious vegan dishes with innovative preparations. Visit us today for dine-in, delivery, or takeout!
What to Know About Nutrition as a Vegan Athlete
For all athletes, whether you’re vegan or not, there are several important points to remember when it comes to your diet.
First, hydration should always be the top priority. Whether you’re at home or working out, staying hydrated is one of the best ways to ensure your success. While eating the right foods can dictate your performance, your base health and wellbeing can be significantly impacted by your water intake (or lack thereof).
It’s also important that you take the time to plan out your meals. Knowing what and when you need to eat can help make sure that you’re reaching your daily nutritional goals.
Top 4 Diet Tips for Vegan Athletes
Here are the top four diet tips for vegan athletes:
Know What You’re Getting – And What You’re Not
One of the biggest concerns for vegan athletes is whether or not they’ll be able to get enough protein on a plant-based diet.
Surprisingly, though, there are actually many fruits and vegetables that act as a source of protein for vegans. In fact, with such a wide variety of cuisine falling into the vegan category, there are few important nutrients that you won’t be able to fit into your diet.
However, it’s important to know what nutrients you aren’t getting, and whether or not you should consider supplements. One vitamin you won’t be able to find in a vegan diet is B12. B12 works to keep your cells healthy while also preventing conditions such as anemia, and it’s mostly found in animal-based products such as meat and dairy. As a result, supplements for B12 are encouraged for all vegans, whether they’re athletes or not.
Know Your Proteins
As we mentioned above, protein isn’t scarce in a vegan diet. From dishes such as seitan to legumes and even leafy greens, there’s no shortage of protein available for vegan athletes. However, as an athlete, it’s important to know what these vegan protein sources are.
View our blog, 7 Best Sources of Vegan Protein for more information!
If you’re worried about a bland or boring diet, don’t fear. When it comes to protein, your options are nearly endless and can branch away from the usual vegetables. In fact, here at Willow, we offer a variety of meatless “meat” options, serving everything from cheeseburgers to lasagna.
There’s an old saying that the more colorful your plate is, the more nutrients you’re getting. When it comes to eating a vegan diet, there’s more truth to that than you might think.
Fruits and vegetables come in a wide variety of colors, from blues and reds to greens. Each one offers its own nutritional benefits, with certain colors hinting at different benefits, such as dark green acting as a great source of folate.
As a result, one of the best ways to keep your body in top form while eating a vegan diet is to fit as many different colors on your plate as possible each meal. This ensures that you’re receiving a variety of vitamins and nutrients necessary in a healthy diet.
Understand Sweat and Salt
Naturally, a plant-based diet is lower in sodium than one that includes animal products such as meats or dairy. While lower sodium levels are important in staying healthy, you don’t want to eliminate salt completely.
When it comes to proper nerve and muscle health, salt is one of the most important factors. As a result, for top performance, maintaining a healthy level of sodium during workouts is a step you won’t want to miss.
With already lower levels of sodium in your diet, though, it can be difficult to maintain the right levels of salt when you’re constantly sweating. Thus, one of our top diet tips for vegan athletes is to find healthy ways to incorporate extra sodium during your workout routine. Our suggestion? Pair your water intake with the occasional sports drink while working out to restore any sodium or electrolytes lost through sweat.
Visit Willow Today
We hope these 4 vegan athlete diet tips assist you! Remember, veganism and athleticism don’t have to be opposites. At Willow, we provide a wide variety of nutritious vegan cuisine that you’ll absolutely love. Join us for dinner out at our restaurant at 199 8th Avenue in NYC or indulge in pickup or delivery. However you decided to receive your plate of high-quality vegan cuisine, we look forward to serving you an outstanding meal!