Former NBA champion John Salley’s nickname during his playing days was “The Spider.” Considering all spiders thirst for blood, you’d think the television host’s diet would consist of loads of meat and dairy, but, much to the surprise of many, John is a strict vegan.
Giving up meat for good five years ago after working with PETA for an event, the 6’11 Basketball Wives reunion host now shares the wonders of his new lifestyle with anyone who will listen. Recently, Salley sat down with the Los Angeles Times to discuss his diet and what he thought his life would have been like if he had found veganism during his playing days.
“If I had a vegan lifestyle when I was playing, I would still be playing,” the 48-year-old, who retired in 2000, told the site. “I’m just rebuilding my body now from all the wear and tear.”
The former co-host of the now-defunct The Best Damn Sports Show (damn, I miss that hour of sports-talk mayhem) apparently still workouts rigorously since he claims that he consumes 4000-5000 calories per day.
“In the morning, I eat organic grits … and I have ginger tea with coconut oil. I eat a lot of kale, and I drink about half a gallon to a gallon of water a day. At night, I’ll make pizza with almond cheese and different vegetables and seasonings; I put turmeric on everything.”
John has clearly taken a liking to the vegan options that are abundant in Southern California. In addition to grubbing, John went to Congress to lobby for the inclusion of more vegetables (not just tomato paste) and fruit options in school lunch programs.
With his advocation and indulgence, John Salley has definitely taken the lead by example for men of color who think plant-based lifestyles are unsustainable and emasculating. Check out this video I found on EcoRazzi, where John and Rachael Ray prepare a guacamole dish.