5 Vegan MMA Fighters Who Have Still Found Success | Explained

Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to obtain success in combat sports with a Vegan diet.

In this page, we'll go over MMA fighters who still found success while on a Vegan diet, what they've accomplished, and why they choose this diet.

Table of Contents

  1. Nate Diaz
  2. Nick Diaz
  3. Jake Shields
  4. Karolina Kowalkiewicz
  5. Alex Caceres

1. Nate Diaz

One of the most popular fighters in the UFC also happens to maintain a Vegan diet.

Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to fight at the highest level and have success while being a Vegan, and Nate Diaz shows this.

He has been a part of some of the biggest Pay Per View events in the history of the UFC, and famously submitted Conor McGregor.

Diaz explains that he actually eats seafood and eggs occasionally, but the majority of his diet is Vegan.

He explains that he actually adopted the Vegan lifestyle when he was 18 years old, and at one point he tried to go back (to eating meat) but his body did not react well to it.

2. Nick Diaz

Widely regarded as the original Diaz, Nick Diaz is one of the most beloved fighters to have ever fought in the UFC.

He also is one of the first fighters to adopt the Vegan diet, and bring it to the spotlight as he endured success in his career.

He explains that during his training camps, he follows a very strict vegan diet, but similarly to his brother he dips in fish and eggs outside of training camp.

He also mentions the benefits that he personally feels while training, including quicker recovery time and lack of soreness.

3. Jake Shields

Another member of the tight-nit 'Skrap Pack', alongside the Diaz brothers, it is no surprise that Jake Shields shares a similar diet.

Shields would rack up an impressive record of 33 wins and 11 losses and at one point challenged George St-Pierre for UFC gold.

At one point he had a 15 fight winning streak during his career where he looked absolutely scary.

Shields is a great example of reaching high levels of success while maintaining a Vegan diet.

4. Karolina Kowalkiewicz

Kowalkiewicz suffers from Hashimoto's disease, a disease

condition in which your immune system attacks your thyroid, a small gland at the base of your neck below your Adam's apple. The thyroid gland is part of your endocrine system, which produces hormones that coordinate many of your body's functions

She admits that this disease had an effect on her health, and possibly impacted her in the lead up of fights, as well as during fights.

It's tough to argue with that, as she was an undefeated 10-0, even beating Rose Namajunas, before going on a multiple fight losing streak.

Due to this in early 2020, she switched to a Vegan diet, and hopes that she can reclaim success as she manages her health.

Her physique in some of her latest Instagram posts definitely seem to back this up.


5. Alex Caceres

Caceres is a UFC Featherweight fighter who has racked up 30+ professional fights, and has recently racked up a 5 fight win streak.

He is not fully Vegan, but explains that he watched a movie, 'Forks Over Knives', where he learned that most if not all, degenerative diseases can be linked to animal-based and processed foods.

This was a big reason for his shift to a Vegan diet, and he had cut out dairy, lactose, processed foods and processed meats out of his diet.

This also in turn, kept him at a lighter walking around weight, which made his weight cut easier.

He also mentions that his energy levels have skyrocketed upwards:

Now, I do have this excess amount of energy that I can't seem to spend all the time. I get into the gym and I'm not satisfied until I'm crawling out of the cage.

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