Brendan Brazier and Thrive Book Review

by Nicole on July 19, 2010

Right now I am writing this post from my in laws balcony that looks out onto the ocean. It has been so incredibly hot here on the Jersey Shore (and east coast) the past couple of days. There is such an unbelievable ocean breeze, I am so thankful to be here. We are heading home tonight because Danny has to work Tuesday and Wednesday. I was thinking of staying, but with everything that happened last week, I thought it would be best to go home and check on my family. 

It has been a nice long weekend, it’s felt like forever since Danny has taken a day off for himself. He really needed this break and I wish it could have been the entire week, but I do appreciate the time he does have. 

While I have some time before dinner I thought I’d finally write up the Brendan Brazier seminar and Thrive book. A couple of weeks ago I found out about the seminar from Jes and I signed Danny and I up. I really enjoyed the book, so I figured I’d love to hear him speak about his experience being a vegan athlete. The seminar took place at Lululemon in Tribeca.

A little background on Brendan Brazier: He is a professional Ironman triathlete and the creator of VEGA, a whole food, plant based nutrition product line. When Brendan was 15 he decided he wanted to be a professional athlete. As he trained he kept looking for ways to be a better athlete and he realized that there were 2 things that make up an athlete’s routine: training and recovery. Brendan figured out that what greatly varied among successful athletes’ was their diet, which eventually led him to become a vegan. The vegan diet helped speed his recovery time and allowed him to work harder in a shorter period of time. 

When we walked into Lululemon we were seated at the very, very front of the room, basically right next to him…because we were late…as usual. Brendan really looks like your average guy. Don’t you always expect celebrities (is he a celebrity?) to stand out? For some reason I always do. He was well spoken and went through his experience as an athlete and how he ended up creating VEGA. I was amazed, as I was in reading the book, how much he knows about nutrition and food. He really has done his research. Danny couldn’t get over it as well. Danny took home the idea that you really have to know your body, what’s good for it and what it thrives on. Neither of us are vegans, but I really like the idea of adopting many of his principles. Eat whole foods, avoid processed foods, reduce stress (nutritional, mental and physical) being some of them. Brendan was very interesting and added many personal antidotes and then explained his product line. 

What continues to blow me away is the standard American diet (SAD), how ridiculously poor it is and how people have no clue about how to eat well, or just don’t care to. I already eat healthy, but this diet is the next level. It’s meant to improve the quality of life. 

The Thrive Diet is meant to:

  • improve the ability to burn body fat as energy
  • better sleep quality *quality not quantity
  • eliminations of junk cravings
  • reduced body fat
  • less joint inflammation
  • improve mental clarity
  • improve ability to build lean muscle tissue
  • quick recovery from exercise
  • reduce cholesterol level
  •  stronger bones
  • better skin quality

The Thrive book goes through a background of Brendan Brazier, research on nutrition, food, exercise, meal plans, recipes and an explanation of types of foods. It is very detailed and comprehensive and I had many “aha” moments. I would read parts of the book aloud to Danny because some of the facts were so interesting. I highly recommend this book, vegan, vegetarian, meat-eater or not, it has facts and knowledge for all. If you are interested in learning about the Thrive Diet but don’t want to read the book (even though you should) then you can go through the Thrive in 30 which is a series of 5 minute videos that cover the important parts of the book. 

Interesting facts and blurbs:
“Food cravings, usually for sugary or starchy foods, are often a telltale sign that the diet lacks nutrients or is tired.”(page 61)
“Appetite will diminish as the quality of food improves.”
“The absence of healthy food in diet is a form of stress.” (page 23)
“Corn derivatives are used in upward of 90 percent of processed food.” (page 67)
“More fossil fuel is burned in the production, processing and delivery of food than in any other industry.” (page 99)
40 percent of the average North American’s total stress can be attributed to diet.
6 types of common food allergies: soy,dairy, yeast, wheat/gluten, peanuts,corn

and my most favorite quote….”Find something you love to do. Not everyone is meant to be a runner.”

I just won a VEGA product from Ashley and I actually just ordered the VEGA protein. I will let you know about it as soon as I try. I was able to sample some of the VEGA bars and protein at the seminar and I did really enjoy it. When I make some of the recipes and drinks and try the protein I will review that. So I say go out and get this book or watch the videos, you will learn a lot. 

Have a good night! Remember to check out my very first giveaway for Food Should Taste Good chips. Winner announced Wednesday!

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen July 19, 2010 at 6:11 pm

I haven't read his book, but I think I would like to. We practice a lot of his principles here already. I want to try vega, so let me know what you think. Unfortunately, I think the SAD diet is made up by the government to help who it gives money to. It is such a cycle…

Enjoy the evening and have a safe trip home!


Simply Life July 19, 2010 at 7:00 pm

oh that's so interesting – thanks for sharing!


Jennifer July 19, 2010 at 7:10 pm

Wow I haven't read his book or heard of him, but it sounds like he is awesome and that you got a lot from the seminar! Sorry your vacation is coming to an end, but I am so glad that you got to get away for a few days!! :)


Laury @The FitnessDish July 19, 2010 at 8:45 pm

Thanks SOOO much for this review…THRIVE was next on my list to read, after The Food Revolution. I LOVE Vega protein, I am obsessed!! I prefer it over sun warrior. I am so glad to see such a great review of the book, a lot of these books get redundant, but to hear from an Ironmans POV, and a Vegan Ironman, at that…sounds like an extraordinary book!!!


pegasuslegend July 20, 2010 at 7:45 am

sounds like a great book…nice review on this


Noelle July 20, 2010 at 8:25 am

This is the third time I have heard this:

"Food cravings, usually for sugary or starchy foods, are often a telltale sign that the diet lacks nutrients or is tired."(page 61)

I need to research more on this. I am starting on a powder form for smoothies for minerals and vitamins and also one for a detox. Great article.


Claudia July 20, 2010 at 8:26 am

thanks for the review, I've been meaning to pick up this book.


Abby July 20, 2010 at 6:09 pm

Thanks for sharing! Now i'm curious because I'm always craving carbs!


Kelly @ Healthy Living With Kelly July 20, 2010 at 7:29 pm

Wow…this sounded great! I am going to check into this!

Reply July 20, 2010 at 7:31 pm

you are so lucky you got to hear him speak in person! i would have loved it….thank you for the interesting info about him. i believe we all must find the "diet" that works for us.


Your best advice July 20, 2010 at 11:02 pm

The book sounds good.


Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) July 21, 2010 at 2:20 am

i have both books and am a die hard fan! not a big surprise, im sure, but even if anyone only buys ito say 10% of his message, just that little bit can change their life so profoundly! so awesome you saw him in person!


Christine@Grub, Sweat and Cheers July 21, 2010 at 1:08 pm

Oh I've been looking forward to hearing your review. I've read his books and use his whole food optimizer sometimes too. I have to be careful with it though because it keeps me awake if I have it later in the day!

Nice to hear he's just a down to earth kind of bloke. I like his approach but didn't find the listed meals/food that appetizing sounding – I wonder if he's going to put a cookbook together some day…perhaps with pictures.


Laury @The FitnessDish July 21, 2010 at 9:19 pm

PS–just ave you a blogger award :-)


hbobier July 21, 2010 at 11:01 pm

Thank you so much for the review!! I was debating buying the book a few months ago but decided against it with the rationale that I'm not a triathlete or body builder so I wasn't sure it was for me. I've also been meaning to try the VEGA powder for smoothies and stuff, so now I'll definitely be keeping my eye out for it.

Sounds like a great seminar–he needs to scoot his speaking tour to the Midwest!!


Rosey Rebecca July 22, 2010 at 7:24 am

Thank you for your comment on my guest post on FitChickNYC. It means a lot to me. It was a hard story for me to share ,so I really appreciate the support. :-)

Awesome review, too, by the way! And totally jealous that your wrote this review on a balcony overlooking the ocean!


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