one of the places where the paleo diet is used extensively in an athletic arena is in mma. the other most popular diet is the vegan diet. joe rogan just talked a little in the middle of the fight about how it seems that fighters are falling into the two camps. my question is how are vegan fighters able to be so competitive with the ones who follow a paleo diet- all other things being equal? what protein sources are they using to keep muscle mass as they train? it's something i've been wondering about for awhile now...
asked byluckybastard (12407)
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on July 02, 2011
at 11:36 PM
Very few MMA fighters have been vegan or vegetarian for their whole careers. Mac Danzig is the only person who I can recall that fits this category. Even so, veg*ns can get enough protein through things like soy protein powder, and enough calories through starch. Although the meatless superstars (Jon Fitch, Jake Shields) have not been spectacular lately.
For a laugh, check out how Jon Fitch read The China Study and learned how bad meat is for you.
"In fact, the problem with animal protein is that it causes cells to split too fast. Ultimately, though, it's not protein that we need - it is, in fact, amino acids. There are a lot more enzymes in raw food and those enzymes then translate into amino acids."
(P.S. GO WANDERLEI!!!!)
on July 02, 2011
at 11:29 PM
Generally the vegan camp supplement with some kind of concentrated vegan protein powders. Which, when you think about it, a (grass fed) cow is just concentrated vegan protein.
on July 03, 2011
at 02:54 AM
Its kind of like the fact that some people can smoke a pack of cigarettets a day yet live till they are almost 100.
Who cares? Ok, I'll admit its a little interesting but how do you know he is not on steroids? What about protein supplements?
It is a FACT that a vegan would NOT survive in a world without supplementation or fortification. Vitamin B12 is an ESSENTIAL nutrient but is only found in animal foods.
So vegans can be muscular because they supplement or consume foods like temph and tofu.
Mark Sisson used to consume tons of grains, ice cream, etc. He finished 4th in the ironman! But he also suffered with a host of problems including IBS. So how do we know that this vegan is not suffering from the same problems? I would be SHOCKED if he was in "perfect health."
on July 04, 2011
at 07:04 AM
The least acceptable diet for these people is the VLC version of Paleo. They at least understand that carbs are necessary to replenish energy after a had workout. As long as you keep your vegan diet to healthy starches and soaked legumes, they are not really suffering much.
We're dealing with largely long-term health issues when you start going crazy with soy, corn, wheat, and other toxins in the vegan diet. Unless you're gluten- or legume-sensitive, you will do well with a vegan diet during your MMA career, which normally doesn't last more than 5-7 years. Heck you could do a whole lot better than those on a SAD.
You gotta understand the benchmark for comparison. Against the SAD, just about any whole food diet will do better. And there is no major diet school that actually advocates gorging on Little Debby cupcakes or gulping down Dr. Pepper. So, surprise, but Vegan is actually an improvement.
on July 03, 2011
at 11:50 PM
Young, athletic people do well on any whole foods diet. Let Urijah Faber, Jake Shields, Mac Danzig or any of the other ones report back in 15 years. Shields is a lifelong vegetarian and Danzig is a long-time vegan, but let them try to keep performing at a high level into late-athletic life.
on March 19, 2013
at 12:41 AM
The answer to your question in my opinion is because pretty much any diet based on whole foods is pretty healthy and can result in strength and performance. The argument starts being about toxicity and anti-nutrients after that.
on March 18, 2013
at 08:52 PM
The human body does not require protein which is globular compounds of amino acids, protein taxes the body because it has to be broken down, it also stresses the kidneys. I have not had protein in years and only get stronger on a frugivorous diet, I mostly eat fruit and am pretty active, I do breakdancing which requires strength. I can do backflips, handstand pushups with no support. Strength comes from muscle contractility and super human strength requires use of the neural system which is very complicated and runs off complex bio-chemicals found in fruit, not meat. People say protein but rarely do they know what it means, to say it is "amino acids" is like saying a house is bricks. If you want to build a house, you want bricks, you don't want "house" to build a house.
We are carbon based life forms made of mostly water, fruit based carbohydrates is the ideal source of fuel for the physical human vehicle.
Vegan is okay, but in the long term a frugivorous diet is the only diet compatible with the human physiology as indicated by its design (digestive tract, nutritional requirements like vit C, lack of larger conical shaped canine teeth, etc.) and most vegans who do not follow this will continue to have health problems just like the rest of the population, although generally not as many or as severe health problems.