When a 315-pound NFL player tells you he’s vegan, your jaw is likely to drop. But as more and more athletes experience better results without the inflammation foods of meat and dairy, this will one day be the norm.
Adding to the long roster of plant-based athletes is Patriot’s lineman Lawerence Guy, who stands at 6’4″, weighs 315 pounds, and fully blocks out meat and dairy along with trying to swat the ball away from offensive players. Guy has already proven that plant-based is winning: He’s already contributed to earning 2 Superbowl rings for the Pats and fans have high hopes for a third this season (despite the drama that led to Vegan Cam Newton getting released). One thing we know for sure is that Guy’s diet has set him up to be a key player for New England.
For better recovery and fewer injuries, plant-based is the athlete’s diet
Guy, 31, credits being able to recover faster from bone-crushing workouts to his dairy-free, meat-free meals. In an interview with ESPN, he told writer Mike Reiss that his vegan diet has helped his career and that he believes it’s the answer to better physical performance.
“You get beat up on this field every day. Your body needs nutrition more than ever to recover. What’s the best way to do that? I think it’s plant-based,” Guy says, as Reiss tries not to drop the mic. “All you’re doing is prolonging your career in a certain way.”
Guy’s vegan diet is a major driver that has allowed him to last 10 seasons and sign a four-year contract last spring for $11.5 million, with $4 million of it guaranteed. He went vegan ten years ago, and has been vegan during the full span of his pro career.
Guy started eating vegan during 2012-13 when with his wife, Andrea urged him to start. “To me, it’s an aspect of replacing things with a healthier way of living. It has helped me fully recover and just flush the body out,” he told Reiss.
Other athletes like tennis pros Novak Djokovic and Venus Willaims, pro surfer Tia Blanco, and all-star basketball player Chris Paul agree with Guy that a vegan diet has made them better athletes. The Game Changers documentary, released exactly two years ago, shocked people by showing the breadth of athletes from runners to strong-man weight lifters who all depend on a vegan diet and never lack for protein, nutrients, or taste. They swear it’s the key to their longevity in the sport and their super-human endurance and improved performance.
Here’s How Lawrence Guy Went Vegan
The switch from carnivore to completely vegan was gradual for Guy as he explained to GQ in an exclusive interview that he and his wife eliminated “heavy red meat products” first and when his “body and joints felt better,” he explored cutting out dairy.
Giving up dairy was easier for Guy since he never “really drank milk.” Next came the poultry, then the fish, and slowly he cut out all animal products. ” I needed to make sure I slowly worked myself into this,” he told GQ. He shared advice from his personal experience for anyone looking to eat more plant-based or follow in his footsteps: “When people jump straight into it, you get the headaches and you start losing too much. We did it over the years, constantly going towards a more plant-based diet.”
What Lawerence Guy Eats in a Day. Here’s How to Recreate His Vegan Diet
Guy’s meals vary depending on the day but for the most part, he’s a simple eater. The pro revealed everything he eats in a day to GQ.
- Cauliflower rice, pizza, lasagna, and hash browns
- Grilled veggies and sweet potatoes
- Beyond Meat and bean burgers
Days when Guy exercises in the gym, he has dairy-free pancakes and cauliflower hash browns to load up on carbohydrates before a sweat. After his workout, he has either a green juice or an acai bowl. He likes to have small snacks throughout the day, like almonds, apples, avocados, and smoothies. For dinner, his wife serves up some type of unique meal, mentioning he loves potatoes.
During the pandemic, Guy was on a cauliflower craze. His wife served everything from cauliflower rice, pizza, lasagna, and hash browns. “Last night, it’s gonna sound weird, we had a cauliflower hummus grilled pizza. The cauliflower crust, hummus on top, and grilled veggies on top of that.” Guy gave Beyond Meat a shoutout as his favorite vegan burger, and a bean burger wins second place.
Guy mentioned that losing weight is never an issue, but gaining and maintaining weight doesn’t come as easy. When the pro is getting ready for game day, he loads up on potatoes and often eats pancakes and oatmeal rice in the morning.
“Your body’s gonna adapt to everything you’re putting into it, you just have to make sure you’re fueling it enough for what you’re putting out on the field and even in the off-season, so you’re not dizzy or lightheaded,” Guy told GQ.
The NFL Star Has Better Results on a Plant-Based Diet
When Guy ditched red meat ten years ago he immediately noticed a difference in how he felt, but when he went completely vegan, that’s when the health benefits really started to kick in. He mentioned benefits like reduced bloating, joint pain, groggy sensations, and noted he never feels terrible after eating a meal and referred to when people say, “Man, I feel terrible that I ate that last night.” Instead, Guy boasted about having more energy and better digestion eating every meal completely vegan.
When teammates or anyone curious about Guy’s plant-based diet asks about his eating habits, he normally has a full conversation about his signature vegan pancake mix or other vegan products because there are so many on the market now. “Years ago it was a lot harder,” he said.
If you’re curious about eating more plant-based, check out The Beet’s meal plans and choose which one looks right for you.