Without a doubt the most common question I get. I think it’s fair since it was the biggest issue I had when converting to a plants based diet. The last thing for me to give up converting from vegetarian to vegan was whey protein powder.
As we all know the food you put in your mouth is what fuels your body day in and day out. So I had my doubts as to whether I was giving my body everything it needed to recover from a hard workout. To be honest, I can’t really say yes or no with 100% confidence, though I feel very strongly that I do.
I think the problem most people have is similar to this. Take Person A (the vegan) and compare them to Person B (meat eater) and put them through the exact same training program over the course of 1 year. Who’s stronger at the end of the year?
To that answer I really don’t know. But I think there’s a problem with the question. I think it should be who’s healthier? Again I could not say with 100% confidence – though there are people on both sides of the fence who would say with 100% certainty that it’s Person A or Person B. For me, that’s not the point.
Here’s how I break down the whole issue on sufficient amounts protein. Whether I would or would not be stronger adding the occasional chicken breast to my diet (or salmon as everyone suggests), that’s not really the point. The medical studies are very conflicting on this subject – so I’ll go with personal experience. This I do know: If you workout – and you eat a balanced plant based diet you will get plenty of protein to make yourself stronger week in and week out.
If you are solely focused on maximum muscle gains after a workout I would suggest taking steroids. Try to find a study that doesn’t prove steroids will make you stronger faster. To that you might argue – but what about the side effects? Interesting! If you still believe there is no relation to meat and dairy consumption and the rapid increase of chronic disease, my only response would be large corporations still have the best PR and Marketing teams money can buy.
The difference between steroid side effects and eating meat 3 times a day for 50 years is the side effects of steroids are well documented and happen fairly quickly. It takes time for people to adjust their beliefs on what was once considered healthy. We all know some 90 something year old person who swears the only reason they are still alive today is because they’ve been smoking all their life.
This article kind of trailed off more into personal benefits vs the real reason why I choose vegan. Which is, even if eating animals did make me slightly stronger and faster I’m fine with that. Sometimes there’s more to life than me.
Whether you agree, disagree or just have something to add – I would love to hear it.