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Ironman Triathlete Brendan Brazier Says Vegan Diet Is Best For Athletes

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Brendan Brazier is the type of guy you’d want to bring home to meet your folks. He’s an Ironman triathlete, bestselling author of The Thrive Diet, creator of an award-winning line of whole food nutritional products called Vega, and has also worked with celebs like Hugh Jackman to get them into the best shape of their lives through plant-based diets.

At a benefit for PCRM LF we caught up with the athlete— who is one of the few in the world to stick to a 100% vegan diet— and he told us what makes a plant-based diet so vital to performance.

“I’ve been vegan since I was 15, and I got into it just because I wanted to be a better athlete, I didn’t care what I ate,” the 35-year-old said. “At the time I would’ve eaten anything if I thought it would have made me a better athlete. And I just tried different ways of eating… That’s what brought me to it, it was really selfish reasons. I mean, I’m kind of embarrassed to admit it.” Brazier explained, “Then I found that a properly put together, plant-based diet was a real performance advantage, and I started racing professionally.”

The Canadian native was voted one of the 25 Most Fascinating Vegetarians by VegNews Magazine, and one of the Top 40 Under 40 most influential people in the health industry by Natural Food Merchandiser. So, when we asked him if he thinks being vegan makes for a better athlete, he responded, “If it’s a properly put together vegan diet I really do. All the top level athletes I know at this point eat a primarily plant based diet.”

Brazier cited his good friend Dave Zabriskie, a Tour de France cyclist who recently became vegan for performance reasons. “He’s top level, and he’s vegan now so it’s exciting,” Brazier maintained. It will mark the first time a cyclist on the tour has ridden completely vegan.

So, for all of you athletes looking to enhance your game— this might be a good time to go veg!

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