Why Venus Williams Went Vegan

Venus Williams wearing a blue t-shirtCelebrity athlete Venus Williams was diagnosed with an incurable immune system disorder this past summer that caused her to reconsider her eating habits.

Through the recommendation of her sister, Serena, Venus began looking into holistic treatments for Sjogren’s Syndrome, which has no conventional remedies. The seven-time Grand Slam winner decided to give up meat and dairy opting for a raw, vegan diet to help manage her symptoms. Her sister Serena Williams has joined her and both tennis players have become role models for women who want to fully embrace alternative diets for health.

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The painful and debilitating symptoms of Sjogren’s caused her to cancel her second U.S. Open match, after winning the first back in August of 2011, and most recently the 2012 Australian Open.

She told People magazine that the diagnosis was a relief after years of going to doctors without results. ‘I would go to the doctor and start crying. I couldn’t help it. I just want a chance to play on the same field as other people, I want to feel normal, but as frightening as the diagnosis was, it was also a relief.’

Making preserving and improving health and fitness levels a New Year’s resolution is a noble goal for both men and women. However, if the William sisters use their collective star celebs power wisely as fit and trim celebrity athletes in the new year, they stand to help not only the African-American community who looks up to them as fashion icons and role models but also to help promote the health of all women.

Vegan Diet

A vegetarian diet is one of the common recommendations for people suffering from Sjogren’s Syndrome. Since it is considered an autoimmune disease, the dietary changes for Sjogren’s aim to reduce the impact of inflammation. Patients are advised to change to a vegetarian diet while increasing the amount of vitamins and minerals they consume from food sources.

There have been rumors among fans that Venus Williams may be on a gluten free diet. However, she has not confirmed this information, and her previous statements only mention a vegan diet. Although some medical experts recommend a gluten free diet for people with Sjogren’s Syndrome, there is still debate on this topic. Not everyone who suffers from Sjogren’s has celiac disease and requires a gluten free diet.

Venus has admitted to now carefully evaluating her food choices to reduce the impact of the disease and the adjustment bodes well for the future of her health.

Are you a vegan or vegetarian who has seen your health improve after eliminating meat or animal products from your diet? If not, do you know of anyone else that has?

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