Published: 08:00, 14 December 2019
A Sheppey wrestling Champion who has reached international acclaim has credited his success to going vegan.
Zack Sabre Jnr who grew up in Sheerness has teamed up with charity People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) to dedicate his success in the sport to his diet.
The fighter made the life choice after watching a Netflix documentary four years ago.
As well as making sure he is getting all the right nutrients, the 32-year-old British heavyweight champion is keen to make sure his wrestling equipment is also vegan-friendly.
In a video put out by the charity, he said: “I decided to become a vegan in the summer of 2015 after watching Forks Over Knives and everything changed instantly.
“I just felt so much more energised just eating plants and whole foods full of minerals and vitamins. You just feel good.
“I’m really proud to be part of a wrestling scene which has so many vegan wrestlers now four out of the top six British wrestlers are vegan which I think is absolutely incredible.
'I just felt so much more energised just eating plants and whole foods full of minerals and vitamins' - Zack Sabre Jnr
“Making sure my ring gear was fully vegan was a really important part because for me being vegan isn’t just dietary, it’s the clothes that I wear.”
He added that his ring jacket and shin guards are leather free and his shoes are cruelty free.
He said: “There’s no reason to be wearing clothes that have come at the expense of tortured animals.
“The question is usually ‘can you be a wrestler as a vegan’ and I say not only can I, but I’m going to be a better wrestler because I’m vegan.”
Zack is one of many athletes who have decided to go vegan, though it’s not just sportsmen and women who have famously adopted the plant-based diet.
'I’m really proud to be part of a wrestling scene which has so many vegan wrestlers' - Zack Sabre Jnr
Many celebrities are now putting their names to the movement which has gained traction in recent years, including actors Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch and Natalie Portman, former US President Bill Clinton, singers Madonna and Ellie Goulding.
A PETA spokesman said: “Compared to meat-eaters, vegans are less prone to suffering from heart disease, strokes, diabetes, cancer, obesity and numerous other health problems.”
A number of athletes have decided to ditch animal products in favour of a vegan lifestyle.
Among them is American Grand Slam singles tennis player, Venus Williams, and seventh best Premier League goalscorer, Jermain Defoe.
Also cutting out animal materials from their lives is British boxer David Haye, who made the change after suffering a shoulder injury, and Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton who said it had benefits to the environment.
More high profile names to switch to a plant-based diet are former Australian cricketer, Jason Gillespie, and tennis sensation Novak Djokovic became so fascinated with plant-based diets he opened a restaurant.