One of Healthy Hollywood's new favorite wellness gurus is former professional Ironman triathlete Brendan Brazier.
The Canadian-born superstar has dedicated his life to sports and inspiring others to eat a plant-based diet. As a life-long runner, Brazier discovered through trial and error that a plant-based diet (or in his case, vegan) fueled his performance. Now, through his health-food line, Vega, and his best-selling Thrive book series, he hopes to spread a message of health to others.
"I've eaten a plant-based diet for 22 years and I don't think I could have had pro-career in triathlons at all, if I hadn't. My athletic level is average at best," Brazier tells Healthy Hollywood.
Brazier, 37, works a lot with pro athletes from football, hockey and other strength sports.
"Those guys need some muscle mass, but if you're doing strength training workout and you eat really clean and eat plant-based whole foods. You have a smoothie post-workout that has a pea or rice protein. Inflammation comes down, but you still get enough protein to build muscle. Plus, if inflammation goes down, functionality goes up," explains Brendan.
Yet it's not just pro athletes who can benefit from this type of eating. A plant-based vegan diet is hailed as a cure-all for certain ailments, is life extending and helps all of us feel more vibrant. Brendan suggests to Healthy Hollywood that people begin a vegan diet slowly. "It's like running a 10k; you first have to run the 5k. It's just getting into it."
With a vegan diet you eliminate all animal and animal bi-products (such as cheese, dairy, and eggs). "A good way to begin is have a smoothie in the morning; you can mix in hemp, flaxseed, and some greens." Another suggestion is to try the elimination diet; take out certain foods for 10 days and notice your bodies' reaction. "A lot of people find when they cut out dairy, their sinuses clear up and they breathe easier. They can breathe deeply," reveals Brendan to Healthy Hollywood.
While, going vegan seems intimidating, Brendan assures Healthy Hollywood, it's a lot easier than it looks. "I'm not a disciplined person. Like a lot of people think; 'Oh, you're a triathlete and you're vegan. You must be disciplined" and I'm not. Once you get past that hump there's no discipline involved. You just eat what you want. It just happens that what you want to eat is good, healthy, plant-based whole food."
Healthy Hollywood is going to take the challenge and with Brendan's guidance is going to go on a 21-day vegan diet. If you would more information on a plant-based diet and other nutritional tips, check out www.thriveforward.com.
-- Terri MacLeod
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