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No matter what anyone tells you, don’t ever believe Formula 1 as a sport is just driving cars around in a circle and doesn’t require any preparation. The F1 faithful know how physically grueling the sport is because of various factors like G force, temperatures, the high speeds, and especially the G force the drivers feel throughout the race. To sustain these varying conditions and still perform at the highest level week in and week out, all drivers on the grid need to stay in top shape. Staying in top shape takes is a 24-hour, seven-days-a-week task. However, some factors pull you back in this constant battle to stay fit and age is one of them. Although Lewis Hamilton has been defying the age factors for years and looks in top shape at 39. His secret? Vegan/Plant-based diet.

After a fascinating and enlightening conversation with a friend in New York, the Mercedes man started following a vegan diet. His love for wildlife and awareness of animal cruelty sparked this change in his life but he was always skeptical about the impact of his diet on his health and subsequently his performance. What surprised the Brit was the positive impact on his life and fitness levels. His plant-based/vegan diet transformed not only his lifestyle but also his body and outlook toward the general trends. So after making the switch, let us tell you what the seven-time world champion consumes in a day to stay in top shape.

What does Lewis Hamilton consume in a day to sustain the grueling life of an F1 driver?

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Everyone knows a healthy and balanced diet consists of three major macronutrients namely proteins, carbohydrates, and fats, among other micronutrients. Out of the three, the most important macronutrient is protein, which helps in muscle building and recovery. Carbs fuel an athlete and keep them energized throughout the day, whereas good fats keep them satiated.

For an F1 driver, proteins and carbs are the two most important nutrients and many believe only meat, eggs, and dairy are the best sources of protein. However, a person who follows a vegan diet cannot consume any of the three. Does that mean a vegan and/or plant-based diet lacks sufficient nutrients for an athlete? Absolutely not!

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Lewis Hamilton, among many others, is proving this theory wrong as the Brit is thriving after turning vegan. He has not only won four world titles since 2017, he also feels and looks in top shape at 39. The Brit has just changed his sources of protein and is not adhering to the general perception. His change in food choices and diet has not only seen him put on more weight, essentially through muscle but also made him more energetic and improved his sleep cycle, another important aspect for an athlete.

“My taste buds learned about things that I never thought I would eat and that I now love: falafel, avocado, beetroot, fresh and dried fruit,” said Hamilton about his change in diet. “I’ve also noticed a marked improvement in my fitness level since I switched, which is motivating. When I switched to a plant-based diet, those highs and lows decreased significantly. I’ve also noticed positive effects on my sleep and on my health in general. The benefits keep coming, and I’ve honestly never felt better.”    

He also revealed, “Adding weight was easy and I did this on a vegan diet. People say ‘oh I need my protein and that’s why I could never go vegan’. I have plenty of protein in my diet and I’ve gained muscle, and I’m healthier and happier than I’ve ever been.” when he increased his body weight from 150lb to 165lb.

The Brit is breaking the stereotype around vegan/plant-based diets being inferior to carnivorous diets. He also revealed how he rarely consumes chocolates, avoids pasta, rice, and carbs in general, and maintains a high-protein diet.

Read More: Fernando Alonso Follows in Lewis Hamilton’s Footsteps as New Diet Leads to “Surprising Results” at 42 Years of Age

Hamilton is living proof plant-based/vegan diet not only works but might be better in the long run and can help an athlete with longevity. In fact, the Brit is convinced this is the right path, so much so that he has put his believed French Bulldog Roscoe on a vegan diet as well and has noticed a significant shift in his energy levels.

What else? He is out there proving to the world that vegan food can be tasty and enticing as well with a $100 million burger chain.

Lewis Hamilton’s Neat Burger investment and idea behind the vegan burger joint

The Brit isn’t afraid to put his money where his mouth is and apart from his charities; he invested in the idea of vegan burgers, as well called Neat Burgers. The brand was founded by Tomasso Chiabara, Zack Bishti, Stasi Nychas, and The Cream Group and they attracted investment from the F1 champ. After opening their first outlet in Central London before gaining popularity and invading the US market with an outlet in New York.

Even though Hamilton doesn’t own the company he owns a substantial stake in the venture advocating veganism to the world. Apart from him, Neat Burger also attracted investment from Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio into the company which is now valued at around $100 million.

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DiCaprio reasoned, “Neat Burger’s pioneering approach to alternative proteins is a great example of the type of solutions we need moving forward.”

Hamilton’s involvement in the company also saw them set up shop at the 2022 Abu Dhabi GP. Why? The idea is simple: it’s to tell the majority one can get the same flavor profile without sacrificing a living organism. The CEO, Stasi Nychas, said it best when he expressed, “Our target is people who want to eat less meat, maybe once or twice a week. And how do we convert meat-eaters? It all comes down to taste. We want our customers to have that nostalgic feeling they get when eating from the popular [fast food] brands.”

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WATCH THIS STORY: Lewis Hamilton invests in rapid grocery delivery start-up Zapp

Not only incorporating it in his life, the Brit wants to make the world a better place and spread veganism, and Neat Burger is a good way to go about it. The active steps Hamilton is taking to spread his ideas are commendable while maintaining a full-time F1 career. Let’s see what more can he do to spread the lifestyle he is thriving on.