Simon Hill is building a rock-hard physique one broccoli floret at a time.
The Australian fitness expert — who also happens to be a millionaire entrepreneur who made his fortune selling tea and coconut vodka — has been making waves with some recent Instagram posts showing off his muscular build.
The catch? He says he built it by following a strictly plant-based diet.
Let’s talk about calcium 🌱💪🏼! For an average male or female in their 20’s and 30’s the recommended daily intake (RDI) is 1000mg. As we get older it goes up to 1300mg and it’s also higher during our teenage years where it’s important to lay down a strong bone structure. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Calcium has many important roles in the body & is much more than purely a mineral for bone strength (despite what media and marketing would have you believe). In addition to Calcium there are other vitamins and minerals that all work in conjunction to promote a strong skeletal system – namely Phosphorus, Vitamin D and Vitamin K2. Calcium gets all the hype and our attention because of the milk industry making us think it’s the be all and end all for proper bone strength….”we will have osteoporosis if we don’t consume cow milk” is how we are programmed from our early days. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Other than bone strength Calcium plays a very important role in: ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ✔️Neural signals ✔️Heart rate, rhythm and contraction ✔️Skeletal muscle contraction ✔️Blood clotting ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I know we have grown up thinking of it as COWLCIUM however studies have shown that we do not need to drink cows milk to get our daily calcium requirements…so we can avoid cows milk and get calcium without the pus cells, hormones and blood! Furthermore clinical research has shown you can absorb the same amount of calcium from fortified Soy milk as you can from cows milk, if not more (around 300-400mg per cup). It’s time to unlearn what marketing unfortunately made us believe ❌🐮 ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Other than soy milk or another fortified plant milk some of the other best places to find Calcium in a plant based diet are dark leafy greens: ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Bok Choy Kale Broccoli ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ & ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Fortified tofu, Chia seeds, sesame seeds or tahini, beans, almond butter, black currants, figs, oats and amaranth 💪🏼 ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Want to increase your calcium absorption? Make sure you are getting adequate Vitamin D ☀️ (20 mins a day) because along with the Parathyroid hormone Vitamin D is what regulates Calcium absorption in Small Intestine and reabsorption in the Kidney. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Simon 🙏🏼 🎥 @charlesgrantcreative
If you want to go vegan, there are ways to follow the diet without sacrificing your fitness goals.
“The world’s changing — there are so many options that are plant-based,” Hill told Men’s Health. “It’s … no longer this weird thing you have to be quiet about when you order at a restaurant. It’s only getting easier.”
Hill’s Diet: “Heaps of Hempseed”
Hill splits up his daily calorie intake into a 50/30/20 model. Fifty percent of his daily calories come from carbs in the form of brown rice, quinoa, and legumes like chickpeas; 30 percent comes from protein including soy, organic tofu, tempeh, and beans; and 20 percent comes from fats found in nuts, avocados, and “heaps of hempseed.”
“I’m pretty strong on intermittent fasting,” Hill added. That means he eats his meals within an 8-hour window, then fasts for 16 hours a day. Intermittent fasting remains slightly controversial, with at least one study proving it’s no more effective than classic calorie restriction. (The 16:8 eating plan must be popular among super-fit Australians, because Hugh Jackman has subscribed to it, too.)
A typical breakfast for Hill — which he eats around noon, since he stops eating around 8 p.m. — usually includes some overnight oats with lupin flakes, almond milk, berries, and hemp seeds.
It’s no secret! I love breaky bowls + boy do they taste better in a Coconut Bowl @coconutbowls 🌱🙏🏼 ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ This bowl has approx 30g of protein, 15g of dietary fibre and a bunch of essential fatty acids. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ What are essential fatty acids? These are healthy fats our body cannot produce & thus we rely on the foods we eat to get them. You may know these better as Omega 3 and 6’s. In the common western diet we over consume Omega 6’s and under consumer Omega 3’s – this trend has been documented over the past 150 years. By throwing this ratio out of whack we put ourselves at risk of a number of health issues including: ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 1- Heart disease and other cardiovascular problems ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 2- Inflammation ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 3- Dry skin ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 4- fatigue, poor memory and concentration ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 5- mood swings ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ People eating a non plant based diet typically get these essential fatty acids from fish or fish oil tablets. The fish get the Omegas from the Algae they eat… from a plant 🌱⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ What are some STRONG plant foods we can get Omega 3’s from? ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Chia seeds, hemp seeds (perfect omega 3 and 6 ratio – you can see them in my bowl above), Brazil nuts, walnuts, flaxseeds, algail oil, hemp oil, flaxseed meal, pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds. Our body will convert a % of the Omega 3’s in these to the long chain essential fatty acids DHA and EPA – research is now showing vegans actually adapt and get better at this conversion than people eating an animal based diet that includes fish. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Wanting to take a supplement? Try a DHA/EPA Algail oil supplement. This is the long chain Omega 3’s in a concentrated form direct from the source (no conversion needed)… cutting out the middle man (fish).⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Happy weekend everyone. Want more FREE plant based nutrition info? Click the link in my bio and register your email ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Simon 🙏🏼
As for lunch and dinner, Hill enjoys grain bowls stacked with veggies and proteins like tempeh or soy.
“Everything I eat is typically available to the masses,” Hill said.
My Journey Part 2/3: 🌱💪🏼 The switch to 100% plant based: During the initial pescetarian period I continued to listen to my body and educate myself. I would feel better after days of just plant based eating. My body would feel lighter after meals and I would feel more energetic in mornings so the switch to a 100% plant based diet was an easy one from there. I started to notice I was able to lift more and my recovery from workouts was way faster… I couldn’t explain it then but it felt like my body was thriving with the new foods I was feeding it so I continued and dug deeper and deeper into making sure what I was eating weekly was made up of ‘premium fuel’ and no longer the ‘diesel’ I’d been putting into my unleaded petrol tank. Having now been eating 100% plants for over 12 months these are the benefits I have noticed first hand already. ✔️ zero bloating, prolonged heaviness after meals or that ‘yuck I overate’ feeling which I would so often have after heading out in previous years for a meat based meal. ✔️ stronger in the gym and way more endurance. I used to walk into gym and at 30 minutes be tired and ask myself what I’m doing here and make an excuse to leave. Now I get to 30 minutes and want to push harder and longer to finish off the session and make some proper improvement in strength and endurance. ✔️ leaner and more vascularity ✔️ quicker recovery post workout which I now credit to reduced inflammation in the body ✔️ clearer skin. It’s amazing but lots of people have said I look younger in the face. ✔️ reignited my passion for food and creativity in the kitchen which has become an outlet for me to stimulate my brains away from my daily work. ✔️ deep sleep for 7-8 hours straight per night ✔️ 6 month blood tests show lower cholesterol at the very very bottom of the desirable range which is a great indicator for avoiding cardiovascular disease in future years. I’ll be doing a blog on my blood tests from before going plant based, 6 month test and 12 month test shortly.
Hill’s Workout: Hitting the Beach for an “in and out”
Hill works out every day because he’d “go crazy” without it, but keeps each session to 45 minutes or an hour.
“I do go into the gym, but I don’t lift heavy like I used to,” he said. Because of his training as a physiotherapist, he likes to create his own moves that are far away from a classic squat or deadlift.
One of his favorite workouts involves hitting the beach with his buddy Tim Robards — a world-class bodyweight expert and the former star of The Bachelor in Australia — to do what’s known as an “in and out.”
Part 1/2: Is Soy healthy? This is quite a common question so within Instagrams word limit I’ve provided my answer based on the current research available. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Firstly I want to start off by looking at some of the research & why it’s been misinterpreted.. & why soy has a bad name in the first place. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 1- 85% Soy in USA is genetically modified. I only recommend Organic/Non GMO Soy. GMO in general pose a risk to our health as they can withstand massive amounts of herbicides, pesticides etc which you are also consuming. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 2- studies showing any side effects have looked at subjects consuming 14+ serves of soy a day. Thats a ridiculous way to look at the affect of any food / I would never recommend consuming one food this frequently – we need balance. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 3- most of the negative research and public scaring has been pushed by animal backed bodies to discredit soy and cause confusion. Confusion means consumers stick to their animal products- it’s the animal industries way of trying to slow down the growth of soy consumption which affects their bottom line ($$$). ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Will Soy cause breast cancer or ‘man boobs’?: most people assume soy causes breast cancer/man boobs because research links excess oestrogen to these. Firstly soy does not contain oestrogen (animal hormone). Rather, Soy along with chickpeas & other legumes contain isoflavones/phytoestrogens (plant hormone) which have been shown to be 1,000 x weaker than animal oestrogen. These isoflavones have actually been shown to lower cholesterol and help regulate cell growth – reducing some cancers. In particular studies have shown soy to actually reduce breast cancer risk – & some of the lowest incidences of breast cancer in the world are in Asian countries where the most soy is consumed. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Is soy bad for our thyroid? If you have a normal functioning thyroid gland there is no compelling research to suggest that soy will negatively affect thyroid function. If you have an existing thyroid issue then soy may affect the absorption of your meds so you should consult your GP and a good tip is to only consume soy a few hrs after you’ve had your medications.
“We go into the water to about belly button height and then we turn toward the shore,” he explained. “Through the water there’s a lot of resistance, so essentially you’re pushing through the water and then sprinting all the way to the backside of the beach.”
“It sounds relatively easy, but pushing through the water is really hard,” he added. “Just to get the heart rate up.”
They spend the rest of their workout doing soft sand runs for about 4 kilometers — about 2.5 miles — and finish off with some body weight calisthenics.
Hill is also gearing up to launch Plant Proof, a website revealing exactly how he got in shape.
By Stacey Leasca