Philadelphia 76ers center Jahlil Okafor has committed himself to a vegan diet over the summer and it has proven to be a major success. The 6-foot-11 Okafor is down to 258 pounds, 20 pounds less than his weight entering training camp last year.
“I’ve cut out dairy, so that’s cheese, chocolate, stuff like that,” Okafor said Thursday at the Sixers’ Shore Tour in Wildwood Crest, New Jersey. “But every now and then I still might eat some fish.”
Okafor changed how he starts his day. Now, his uncle prepares a meal out of a vegan cookbook for him each morning. Okafor likes the recipe options so he doesn’t “get bored going vegan.”
“I feel lighter, I feel great,” he said. “I’ve been taking my body seriously, my health seriously, what I eat very seriously. So I think it’s going to pay off.
Fall Of Okafor
The former No. 3 overall pick has fallen way down in the Sixers’ big man pecking order behind Joel Embiid, Dario Saric, and even Richaun Holmes, and will need to play his way back into head coach Brett Brown’s rotation.
This upcoming season will be an important one for Okafor. After a solid rookie year where he averaged 17.5 points and seven rebounds per game, Okafor suffered a massive sophomore slump as his numbers dipped to just 11.8 points and 4.8 rebounds per game.
Trust The Process Of Weight Loss
There’s some undeniable benefit in Okafor slimming down, and his willingness to commit to weight loss is a promising sign. But he’ll still need to apply that on the floor, which means showing more energy on the defensive end while boosting his repertoire offensively. If Okafor can stay healthy, he could become a great dark horse candidate for the sixth man of the year award. If not, his days in Philadelphia could be numbered.