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Jon Fitch’s Weirdo Vegan Diet: A Valid Concern? Or Just Nasty Hippie Bullsh*t?

(Vid: YouTube/OfficialJonFitch)

In the final days leading up to UFC 127, a fair amount is being written (much of it by the fighter himself) about Jon Fitch’s new, surprisingly not-that-disgusting-sounding vegan diet. About a month ago, Fitch posted the above video to his official YouTube channel showing him pouring hemp milk and raw agave into his oatmeal, casually mentioning that sometimes he “opens up a coconut” to drink with lunch and that he only eats nuts when they’re “raw and organic.” Insert your own joke about that last part. For a fairly standard “fighter blog” the vid actually has some pretty high production values – dig that scene at 2:19 of Fitch opening the cupboard … shot from inside the cupboard. Also, judging by the easy tenor of Fitch’s voiceover narration (and the soft guitar soundtrack), we’d wager there are a couple of Bright Eyes CDs kicking around somewhere in the guy’s condo.

“I like my oatmeal lumpy,” Fitch says at one point, apparently without irony. Meanwhile, every other 32-year-old man in America snickered and then said, “Hey fat girl, c’mere, are you ticklish?”

Predictably, in an MMA subculture that seems by turns very accepting and/or totally intolerant of quirky lifestyle choices, some eyebrows were raised. Fitch responded by penning a further explanation of his diet as part of the pre-UFC 127 “Fight Journal” he wrote for MMA Sure, choosing to minimize your “meat intake to at least five percent or less of your overall calories” doesn’t sound like it’s for everybody but if that’s what Fitch wants to do, no harm done, right? Well, maybe not. As Kenny Florian told SBNation this week, there are some concerns that the diet may have cost Fitch some of his natural size advantage over BJ Penn this weekend. Check it out, then let the rampant speculation begin:

“I just was with (Fitch) at (UFC 126) in Vegas and he’s actually walking around at 176-pounds,” Florian told Luke Thomas. “He’s a vegan now. He’s 100 percent vegan. He’s changed his whole lifestyle. And the first thing I said to him was, ‘Man, you’re looking pretty darn skinny’ and he said, ‘Yeah, I’m a vegan now and I’m 176-pounds right now’. That is actually, I hear, maybe even a concern with people in his own camp.”

OK, full disclosure: We actually think it’s totally cool that a dude who started his “adventure” (his words) as captain of the wrestling team at Purdue – where we assume there weren’t a lot of in-depth discussions on the politics of food going on in the locker room – has grown into what appears to be a fairly socially conscious adult who professes to care about the continuing corporatization of the average American diet, not to mention the physical implications of what he puts into his body.

On the other hand though, if Fitch really cut only six pounds to make weight for this fight and Penn was walking around at 165-pounds circa the pre-fight press conference, perhaps the AKA product isn’t going to have that tremendous edge in size and strength we’d been counting on. Will it even matter? Unknown. Fitch will still be the better wrestler and probably have the much better cardio. Still, with just one day left before the fight, we wouldn’t be doing our jobs as scumbag internet bloggers if we weren’t fretting about a rumor we heard regarding some guy’s walk-around weight. Right?

While Fitch doesn’t seem on the verge of moving to Vermont, joining a sustainable living co-op and campaigning for Ralph Nader, he says he’s committed to this vegan thing.

“Ultimately, this will probably just be the way I eat from now on,” he writes. “It will be a lifestyle change. I don’t believe in short-term diets or the idea of a quick fix. If you can eat a certain way and feel the benefits of it, why do anything different? I feel great eating and living the way I am right now, so I’ve got no doubt this will be a continuous thing in my life.”

Unless he loses this fight, in which case the vegan diet probably gets tossed on the trash heap alongside all our CrossFit T-shirts and Billy Rush nutritional pamphlets. Also, we can’t help but wonder: Now that Fitch has been revealed as an obvious pinko, does Brock Lesnar want to change his pick?

Cagepotato Comments

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fatbellyfrank- February 26, 2011 at 3:41 pm
^ Thanks mate
BigPhil- February 25, 2011 at 8:26 pm
@ffb-yeah. It has something to do with vitamin k. Usually you get it from the byproduct of gut bacteria that breaks down meat. You can get it from fermented veggies like sauerkraut though. It is only a big problem if you've been veg for an extended amount of time.
danomite- February 25, 2011 at 7:19 pm
veganism is beyond stupid.
i'm actually the only person in the world who's not on an organic diet. i eat only sand and other silicon based, non-living things.
fatbellyfrank- February 25, 2011 at 5:55 pm
@ Bigphil, i have heard that a vegan/veg diet also slowed down your blood clotting ability? and therefore cuts round the face, busted nose etc are gonna bleed worse, anyone else heard of this or is it from Dr Tito's research?
BigPhil- February 25, 2011 at 4:23 pm
@ghostboner- it can work but it is just really hard to do. I wrestled with a couple of kids in college and worked with a few triathletes in grad school who were vegan/veg and it just seems that they get hurt and burnt out a lot more often than others. I also just question any sort of idea or lifestyle were people jump up and down and go out of their way to tell you about it. But maybe it will all work out for him, what do I know.
fatbellyfrank- February 25, 2011 at 3:22 pm
Skeletor wins this round of the interwebs, fucken funny shit mate
fatbellyfrank- February 25, 2011 at 3:19 pm
@ Acrocerid, I always thought the answer to that one was kick her in the cunt
ghostboner- February 25, 2011 at 3:12 pm
@big phil - Fitch and Shields have both said they take protein supplements like mad, and eat eggs and occasionally fish for Fitch. One thing I will say though, this diet does seem to help out your cardio, and Fitch already had great cardio, so unless B.J comes in in extra good shape he is gonna have an emaciated pinko hippie vegan energizer redbull snuggie blanket all over his ass. Like Lindsay Lohan on a glass table full of coke.
ghostboner- February 25, 2011 at 3:06 pm
Oh sheezy skeletor wins. I voiced this very conceron on Fightlinker when they posted Ariel interviewing Fitch earlier in the week. He looked small. It worries me. And yes Rwilson, it is a valid concern as well as nasty hippie bullshit.
BigPhil- February 25, 2011 at 3:03 pm
Having a pretty extensive background in nutrition and human performance I have to say that I do not agree with a high level athlete cutting out a major component of their diet. Most of these guys train so hard and burn many calories they need all they can get and cutting out an important component like protein can lead to overtraining very quickly. Remember during the olympics when Michael Phelps was talking about the absurd amount of calories he ate every day? However Mac Danzig is doing okay for himself. But then again he's not really in consideration for any title shots is he?
Waxedpants- February 25, 2011 at 1:59 pm
How can you say you " don't like the taste of organic food "? WTF does that mean ? You like beef? Well organic beef tastes better. You like any vegetables ? They all taste better grown organic.

Maybe you don't like " crazy hippy" foods like seaweed cakes and granola pies but saying you don't like the taste of organic food is fucking retarded.

Paleo diet ftw
cecils_pupils- February 25, 2011 at 1:32 pm
I once got busy in a Burger King bathroom.
El Famous Burrito- February 25, 2011 at 12:49 pm
Skeletor, so simple, yet so hilarious.
skeletor- February 25, 2011 at 12:46 pm
El Guapo- February 25, 2011 at 12:41 pm
RSparrow- February 25, 2011 at 12:33 pm
Putting her back in her wheel chair
RSparrow- February 25, 2011 at 12:33 pm
What's the worst part about eating a vegetable?
RearNakedSpoon- February 25, 2011 at 12:25 pm
Fitch drinks like a Fish :D GSP is still not impressed.
ReX13- February 25, 2011 at 12:21 pm
“I like my oatmeal lumpy,” Fitch says at one point, apparently without irony. Meanwhile, every other 32-year-old man in America snickered and then said, “Hey fat girl, c’mere, are you ticklish?”

Goddammit, Chad, i snotted all over myself.

And +1 to GetOffMe for "three round decizzy"
El Guapo- February 25, 2011 at 12:12 pm
You and me both, Fitchy, you and me both. I like my oatmeal lumpy, too. Cook up about a half cup of bacon strips, lump 'em together, stir them into your oats. Extra tasty lumpy, playa.
RwilsonR- February 25, 2011 at 12:11 pm
^^^ Didn't Fitch start his career fighting at 205? That would be crazy to see him at 155.
Anhonestmoose- February 25, 2011 at 12:06 pm
If he's walking around at 176 how hard would it be to cut to 155? I mean, he's beaten everyone at 170 not named GSP, and a lot of guys cut way more than 21 pounds.
RwilsonR- February 25, 2011 at 11:59 am
How long until Fitch is into the coffee enemas and nice warm cups of urine tea? Why even stop there with the bodily fuids? If he were creative, I'm sure he could come up with an interesting way to make his own protein shake.
GILL-uh-TEEN- February 25, 2011 at 11:49 am
Fitch takes his decisions seriously. They're all he's got.
RwilsonR- February 25, 2011 at 11:38 am
Can't it be both a valid concern AND nasty hippie bullshit? Damnit Fitch! Your size and strength was the best thing you had going over BJ. You don't make blankets out of salad, and I need you to do some blanketing this weekend.