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Vegan UFC Fighter Nate Diaz Beats Conor McGregor in Shock Victory

Written by veganbodybuilding | Sunday, 6th March 2016 | 16 Comments

Vegan UFC Fighter Nate Diaz stepped in to fight the formidable Conor McGregor on only 12 days notice and claimed a impressive victory after beating his opponent in the second round. McGregor was unable to keep up with Diaz and was completely overwhelmed by Diaz's energy and unrelenting pace. McGregor had been in training for months leading up to this fight as he was originally going to fight Rafael dos Anjos who withdrew at short notice with a foot injury.

Diaz stepped in to replace dos Anjos with only 12 days notice and without the months of proper training usual before a fight of this magnitude - McGregor is ranked third in world of the UFC's pound-for-pound rankings, behind light heavyweight Jon Jones and flyweight champ Demetrious Johnson, and was previously undefeated in UFC.

McGregor was caught by a powerful left hand in the second round which stunned the UFC featherweight champion - fighting for the first time at welterweight 25lbs heavier - and Diaz simply took his opportunity and poured on the pressure.

Diaz took McGregor to the ground and the fight was his. The Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt finished the fight quickly after McGregor was forced to submit.

McGregor went into the bout as the overwhelming favourite and was looking to claim his 20th win in MMA and his eighth-consecutive victory in UFC. But instead suffered his first UFC defeat and only the third of his career.

Ido Portal, one of Conor McGregor's coaches leading up to the fight once famously stated: "I can't view vegan diets as something healthy. I've never met a vegan who was able to perform with the same energy levels as I see with someone with a more carnivore diet. I actually refuse to work with vegans"

One can only assume Ido Portal is now eating some humble (vegan) pie.

Diaz, who maintained an incredible energy throughout the match, has been a strict vegan since he was 18 years, following the advice of his older brother Nick Diaz, who is also a UFC fighter. The Diaz brothers consume a predominantly raw plant-based diet and credit this with their superior performance capabilities inside the ring. Both brothers have incredible cardio, compete in triathlons and never seem to fade for a second in fights despite pushing a frantic pace.

“I’ve been vegan since I was 18 years old,” comments Nate Diaz, who was the winner of “The Ultimate Fighter 5 reality series. "I’ve been eating raw for the last year and a half, not full complete raw, but as much as I can."

Nate has been eating this way for almost a decade and his diet allows him to train exceptionally hard. Diaz's cardio is among the best in the UFC and he runs or bikes twice a day on top of wrestling, boxing and martial arts training.

Additionally, the retired fighter and TUF 9 winner, James Wilks, found that adhering to a whole food, plant-based vegan diet enhanced his performance capabilities.

The idea of meat, often filled with hormones, pesticides, and other harmful toxins, decomposing in their bodies, isn't something that appeals.

There are plenty of great sources of plant-based protein such as:

  • Legumes such as beans, peas and lentils
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Soy products including soy beverages, tempeh and tofu
  • Whole (cereal) grains.
  • Quinoa Rice
  • Spirulina

And according to the American Dietetic Association, a vegan lifestyle brings many benefits, including guarding against these illnesses:

  • Heart disease
  • Colorectal, ovarian, and breast cancers
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)

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Patrick Shanahan | Mon, 7th Mar @ 4:46am

The Diaz brothers aren't vegan. They eat fish and eggs.

Sam Murphy | Mon, 7th Mar @ 10:56am

They are vegan. That article only says they occasionally eat eggs or fish, and it doesn't talk about the context. They almost always eat vegan, and on those rare occasions they eat eggs or fish We need to look at the whole story, maybe there was nothing else to eat. Both brothers say they've been vegan for years. We shouldn't be too strict on what we call vegan, when we look at the state of the world and our options at times.

Jonas Guedes | Mon, 7th Mar @ 7:33pm

It´s 2012

Jonas Guedes | Mon, 7th Mar @ 7:34pm


veganbodybuilding | Tue, 8th Mar @ 2:09am

We'd really like to know the source that article used to claim Nate eats fish and eggs, because in every interview with Nate we've seen, Nate has always said he's vegan, and has never mentioned eating fish/eggs.

veganbodybuilding | Tue, 8th Mar @ 2:15am

Also the article you linked to is 4 years old and seems to be the only article claiming Nate "occasionally throws in fish and eggs" to his diet. It's counter to everything he's publicly stated in the interviews we've seen. Would be good if Nate could clarify.

Jonas Guedes | Tue, 8th Mar @ 8:56am

Veganbodybuilding you right. Just him to say it. But please send interview that he´s said been vegan?

jonny2gnar | Mon, 7th Mar @ 12:35pm

pace had nothing to do with it. Connor took a gamble with a big hit, and missed. Diaz was just able to capitalize off the misjudgment.

It's because he's a good fighter, not because he makes plants suffer.

Oli Fletcher | Tue, 8th Mar @ 9:38am

I gotta understand this.. to build effectively Arnold says a gram of protein for a pound of weight. i.e. I weight 180lbs, so I need to find 180g of protein on training days. If lentils are a good source of protein (9g/100g) I would need to eat around 2kg of lentils... CAN SOMEONE PLEASE POST A VEGAN MEAL PLAN THAT ACHIEVES AROUND 200G OF PROTEIN IN A DAY. I would love to be vegan, but I can't find a way of getting all of it into my body without sitting there for hours trying to stuff lentils and peas down my throat.

Rob Laichalk | Sat, 12th Mar @ 1:39am

Diaz didn't take McGregor down. McGregor turned into a 'panic wrestler' and shot in for a takedown. The devil's in the details people.

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