Novak Djokovic Attributes Australian Open Success To A Plant-Based Diet

mbg Editorial Assistant By Christina Coughlin
mbg Editorial Assistant
Christina Coughlin is an editorial assistant at mindbodygreen. She graduated from Georgetown University in 2019 with a degree in psychology and music.

Image by Justin Setterfield / Getty Images

Tennis star Novak Djokovic is serving up aces—on and off the court. His recent success in the Australian open has been no surprise, but we were pleased to hear what he credits his success with: a plant-based diet.

Djokovic has been avoiding meat and animal products in his diet for over four years, and he claims that it helps support his athletic performance. After his most recent win in the third round of the tournament, he opened up in a press conference about this part of his life. When speaking about his diet, he noted that it boosts his recovery time, increases his strength, and helps build up his muscles. "I'm not a weightlifter, of course, but I do have an optimal balance between the strength and power and speed," he says. 

The physical and health benefits aren't the only reason Djokovic chose to go plant-based, however. "It's a lifestyle—more than just a diet because you have ethical reasons as well," he says. Djokovic cites animal cruelty and climate change as other reasons contributing to his practice of the diet. 

Djokovic was a producer on the recent documentary Game Changers, which explores the benefits of plant-based eating all around the world. As a producer, Djokovic joined other celebrities like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jackie Chan, and James Cameron. On the decision to be a part of this project, he says, "I was definitely very happy to be a part of a very impressive group of people. From sport, the movie industry, different fields of life, very successful people who are eating plant-based, being healthy, happy, and successful in what they do. This is what it is all about."

The tennis star looks to the future, anticipating that more sports players will adopt the diet as well. "It is something I'm really proud of," he says. "Hopefully that community grows even more; hopefully I can inspire other athletes that it is possible to be plant-based." We hope so, too!

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