Professional football player Malcolm Jenkins—who plays the safety defensive back position on NFL team the Philadelphia Eagles—credits his plant-based diet for achieving success on the field. The Eagles have had a particularly rough season, with many defensive players succumbing to injury. However, Jenkins is the only defensive player that has not sustained an injury this season and has not missed one game in the last five years in his decade-long career. “I didn’t even tell anybody about it for a long while until everybody started realizing my plates didn’t have meat on them,” the 31-year-old athlete told ESPN. “They were clowning me for a little bit, until I was the old guy still running past everybody.” Jenkins transitioned to a plant-based diet last year after watching vegan documentary What the Health and explained that once his performance improved on the field, his teammates became curious about what he was doing differently. “Then a couple guys would pull me to the side, like, ‘Hey, you know, tell me about the diet, I’m thinking about it,’” he said. Jenkins—who is an avid prison-reform advocate off the field—joins a growing list of professional football players who have eschewed animal products to achieve optimal performance, including 15 players on the Tennessee Titans.
Want more of today’s best plant-based news, recipes, and lifestyle?
Get our award-winning magazine!