Early November, Kunal Mutha, founder Only Earth trekked the Summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, Africa’s Highest Peak. With an altitude of 19,340 ft/5895 m it is the largest free-standing mountain in the world and referred to as the roof of Africa. It took him 7 days, 60 km of hiking through 4 different climatic zones to get to the summit. The climb doesn’t require technical mountaineering skills, but the summit day was a long and strenuous one with sub-zero temperatures and a 7-hour midnight climb in the dark on steep and rocky terrain to get to the summit point in the morning hours. 

As an athlete who has also trained for multiple long distance international triathlons, he speaks strongly about how his shift to the vegan/plant-based lifestyle helped him prepare for these ultimate feats. 

A plant-based diet provides all of the nutrients your body needs for training and competition. Because a plant-based diet is high in carbohydrates, low in fat, and rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, it can support or improve your athletic performance.

Improving the fitness and results– through faster recovery time between workouts, quicker healing from injury, and being able to build leaner, stronger muscles. 

While meat, dairy and eggs provide a great deal of this important macronutrient, but so do beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, soy-based products (such as tofu and tempeh), spirulina and many types of grains. Even certain vegetables, such as broccoli, asparagus, leafy greens, and sprouts will top up your protein intake. The good news is you can absolutely get all the protein you need with plant-based foods. Once you move beyond your protein anxiety, you can take advantage of all the benefits of eating a whole food plant-based diet, including the freedom to eat a large quantity of nutrient-dense foods that boost your energy, stamina, recovery time, and strength.

More and more studies today show that you can build muscle on a plant-based diet that gives you enough protein, paired with resistance exercise. All whole plant foods have sufficient protein and by consuming a variety of foods together you can get a complete source of essential amino acids that make up protein.

While a sense of excitement was building as he got closer to the summit point after a hard climb, he was also saddened to be reminded that he was probably among the last few to catch a glimpse of the famed glacier which has melted away by over 85 % of its size in the last few decades. As a brand, Only Earth is carbon neutral and climate positive. It funds many environmental initiatives to protect Oceans, forests and endangered species.