plant based recovery

The secret of plant based sport nutrition in recovery

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The secret of plant based sport nutrition in recovery

Eating healthy has always been an issues for top athletes. The last years, vegetarian and vegan nutrition has become more popular among sportsmen. Is this a trend that will simply blow over or is this an important step in our wellbeing? However, it is already clear that plant based nutrition has a lot of advantages for athletes.


Why would you choose for a vegetarian or vegan diet?

In contrast to what a lot of people think, it is possible to consume all the necessary nutrients with a vegetarian food pattern. There are a lot of vegetarian athletes who perform very well on high level. A vegetarian diet has a lot of advantages. This diet does not contain any animal fats and let it be these fats that cause cardiovascular diseases. Next to this, you are supporting the animal welfare and the environment.

But off course, the nutrients that aren’t available in plant sourced food have to be replaced in a fully way. These substances are for example: proteins, iron, vitamin B12, calcium, etc. Below you can find an overview of the plant based sources of these nutrients.   


Plant based source


Beans, peas, lentils, tofoe, soy and derived products, quinoa, nuts, seeds, eggs, dairy products


Beans, peas, lentils, nuts, seeds, whole grains, dark green leafy vegetables, dried fruits


Broccoli, cabbage, kale, almonds, milk, cheese, yoghurt, soy, rice

Vitamin D

Fatty fish (salmon, sardines, mackerel), eggs, milk, fruit juices, yoghurt, mushrooms

Vitamin B12

Dairy products, eggs, soy milk, grains


Beans, peas, lentils, nuts, seeds, whole grains, soy, hard cheese



The same kind of proteins?

The success of every sport performance is based on two important aspects: training and recovery. While you are training, you muscle cells are used very intensely so there will be damage. During the rest period, your body will repair or replace the cells. Our body is able to do this thanks to the amino acids produced by proteins. These amino acids will look after the recovery of muscles, the strength of the bones, etc.

Vegetarian athletes have to consume these proteins from plant based sources instead of from animal sources such as nuts, seeds, superfoods, etc.). Plant based proteins contain in general less essential amino acids than their animal variant. That is the reason why vegetarian athletes have to consume more proteins. But this doesn’t have to be an invincible task.plant based recovery


Plant based recovery

Brandon Brazier, a Canadian former endurance athlete, is firm believer in a vegan diet. In his book, Thrive, the Vegan Nutrition Guide to Optimal Performance in Sports and Life, he stated that the more he at fruit and vegetables, the faster he recovered. He found out the reason for this fast recovery is the acidification of the body. When you are sporting intensely, your body produces acid; the muscle cells releases lactic acid as waste. For a good recovery the body needs minerals to make this lactic acid harmless. Fruit and vegetables contain a lot of these minerals to speed up this process.