James, who famously returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers, is following in the fork-steps of his buddy, Miami Heat point guard Dwyane Wade, who has been adhering to the Paleo plan on the advice of fellow Heat player Ray Allen, who has been eating similarly since 2013.
“When you start eating the salads and the proteins and fruits – in Whole Foods, I kill the fruit and vegetables section – you just feel so much fresher and cleaner," Allen told CBSSports.com in an article last year that looked at the nutrition habits of NBA players.
Clippers star Blake Griffin and Manu Ginobili of the 2014 NBA champion San Antonio Spurs also are fans of the plan.
Athletes, who are looking for ways to gain a competitive advantage rather than fit into their skinny jeans, often tweak the Paleo program, adding in some of the verboten starchy carbs to fuel their grueling workout on and off season.
Wade posted before-and-after Instagram photos a couple weeks ago, showing off his progress on the diet that ditches dairy, wheat, beans – actually it’s easier to list what you can eat rather than what you can’t. Meat, fish, nuts, leafy greens, berries, seeds and healthy fats are all on the table.
Wade posted a caption with his photos: "Setting goals for myself... Started this a month ago. To the left is before. To the right is now. #tryingtogetsexy #thisdietiskickingmybutt"
Rather than his butt, Wade’s knees are why he’s loading up on Paleo eats. Wade missed 28 games this past season as the team had him on a maintenance program to preserve his joints. Obviously less weight on his knees will prolong his career.
James and Wade have been training this summer with Miami-based strength and nutrition coach David Alexander, whose website features lots of links to Paleo diet information.