Formula One Driver Lewis Hamilton Credits Plant-Based with Winning
When an athlete changes anything—their coach or caddy, training routine, their swing or even their usual grip on the handle of a golf club, tennis racket or baseball bat—and they suddenly get winning results, others sit up and take notice.
So when Formula One Driver Lewis Hamilton changed his diet to a fully plant-based eating plan, it made news among the racing community and the rest of the world. Hamilton had the winningest start of his career and recently told The New York Times that he credits his new plant-based diet with making the difference. Hamilton gave up processed food and animal products in exchange for a regime of vegetables, fruit, nuts, and grains. And he doesn't actually like to talk about it too much, for fear that his competition might get the memo and try it themselves.
In fact, Lewis Hamilton is not the first well-known vegan driver to make headlines and win races. Andy Lally, Landon Cassill and others have made plant-based their passion, too. We're also super inspired by Leilani Münter, a biologist, eco-activist and race car driver to whom ELLE magazine awarded their Genius Award for her work, and who uses her platform to lobby for solar power, electric cars and animal rights. Plus, she wins.
In the newly released documentary The Game Changers, athletes and scientists discuss the benefits of plant-based eating on athletic performance, not just long-term health effects. The elite athletes, including Hamilton, are featured as examples of how the misperception of needing animal protein to perform at the highest level. Also included in the doc are an Olympic cyclist, sprinters, distance runners, members of the Tennessee Titans, NBA stars and extreme fighters. The Strongest Man Alive contest winner is also vegan and gives a heartfelt testimonial about how going plant-based enhanced his sports performance.
We aren't saying you have to change your grip if your game is suffering. But that grip might just be on your drumstick, lamb chop or burger. Because it turns out Hamilton isn't alone. Novak Djokovic won Wimbledon this year and credits his energy and recovery to his plant-based diet. And co-captain of the World-Cup winning U.S. Women's Soccer team, Alex Morgan, has been vegan for years. Kyrie Irving won a championship ring with the Cavs and is a six-time all-star MVP. The Williams sisters are plant-based. We see a trend here. Just sayin'.