In Nike’s latest advert, vegan NBA star Kyrie Irving shows off his impressive dribbling skills and credits his talents simply to: “a plant based diet”.
The advert features Boston Celtics point guard promoting his new sports line, the Kyrie 4 Collection.
Kyrie Irving switched to a plant-based diet in 2017 and claims 'going vegan' has improved his play.
"My energy is up. My body feels amazing.” Irving told basketball analysts after following the plant-based diet for a while.
His head coach, Brad Stevens agrees:
“He’s had great energy all year - the nutrition side is huge”.
Retired four-time champion NBA player John Salley has been credited as one of the catalysts for this dietary shift in the NBA. The documentary What the Health further inspired Salley to become a vegan advocate.
"If you ever see that movie and you still eat meat," Salley told Bleacher Report, "then you're just stupid."
Many other NBA stars have followed John Salley's lead including Damian Lillard, Wilson Chandler, Al Jefferson, Garrett Temple, Enes Kanter, JaVale McGee, and Jahlil Okafor with notable performance improvements.
It's great to have NBA stars and Nike advertise a plant-based diet and a significant amount of Nike apparel and footwear is now free of animal products. Sadly Kyrie's collection isn't vegan friendly as it includes suede.
However having athletes promoting a plant-based diets as the preferred diet for reaching your true potential and for increasing your sports performance really helps demonstrate to everyone that eating animal products really isn't necessary at all - and that eating meat has actually been holding our sports stars back.
These are great steps forward - they've made the health connection - now we just need to encourage them to make the ethical connection as well and realise we don't need to wear or use any animal parts either.
Another great athlete who went vegan for ethical reasons and has been vocal about the performance improvements he's experienced is 252lb Irish international rugby player Anthony Mullally.
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