Ever since the tyrannosaurus-rex set the trend, the carnivore has long been associated with the masculine stereotype. Simply put, eating meats that consist of high protein was the best way to put on mass and gain muscle. However, after millions of years, things have started to change. With an increase in technological advancement, different ways to intake protein have become available. As a result, essentially all people and, specifically, many athletes have integrated vegetables to become a staple in their respective diets.

Interestingly, some athletes have gone even further. They’ve turned to veganism. Though the vegan lifestyle has amassed a sizable following in the past couple years, the people who have hopped on the vegan bandwagon are not stereotyped as being strong or ripped. That being said, looking at these five vegan athletes could change your mind.

No. 1: Billy Simmonds


Simmonds is an Australian body builder who won the 2009 Mr. Universe championship. Currently, Simmonds works as a nutrition consultant and a professional stuntman. Simmonds also owns a black belt in the Korean martial art hapkido.


No. 2: Austin Aires


A TNA professional wrestler, Aires decided to become a vegan in 2011. He made his choice because he believed that the corporate food industry does not serve food that’s healthy enough to consume. Aires has felt healthy since the switch in 2011 and, in 2012, he won the TNA World Heavyweight Championship.


No. 3: Dominick Thompson


https://www.instagram.com/p/3NNqVAvoEp/ Thompson may not have national fame, but he sure knows how to carve out a niche in instagram. Thompson, who has over 90,000 followers, has not eaten meat for thirteen years. His main reason for giving up animal meats was that he felt humans were not designed to consume animal. According to him, without machines, we wouldn’t be eating them. Thompson acted on this mindset. He started off as a vegetarian and, three years ago, he hopped aboard the vegan squad. Thompson also participates in triathalons and ironman competitions. 


No. 4: Mac Danzig


Danzig, a former MMA fighter has been a full-fledged vegan since 2004. In 1996, when Danzig was 16, he decided to stop eating beef and pork purely for animal rights reasons. In 1999, Danzig decided to eliminate dairy products from his diet because as he grew older he began to develop inner ear infections. He thought cutting out dairy could help him stave off the infections. In fact, since he cut them out of his diet, he hasn’t had one infection. Finally, in 2004, Danzig eliminated chicken from his diet because he didn’t like it any more. After 2004, Danzig went on to very successful UFC and MMA careers. He won the season six of The Ultimate Fighter and finished his MMA career with a 21-12 record.


No. 5: Griff Whalen


https://twitter.com/GriffWhalen/status/486912147507519488 Whalen is one of the few current NFL players that adheres strictly to veganism. Whalen switched to eating solely plant based foods after his girlfriend convinced him. Since then, Whalen has felt quicker and much lighter on his feet. Though Whalen only had two receptions last year, he still looks to establish himself this year as one of Andrew Luck’s many reliable targets.


No. 6: James Wilks


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Wilks is best known for winning Spike TV’s The Ultimate Fighter: United States vs. United Kingdom. Wilks, a United Kingdom native, is a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, a black belt in taekwondo and a black belt in kick boxing. Wilks currently owns a 7-4 record in MMA contests. Wilks thought so highly of his vegan diet that he created an organization called “Plant Athlete” that promotes the athletic-oriented benefits of veganism.