CLEVELAND — Dynamic, versatile and impactful are three words that perhaps best describe Browns rookie linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah on the field. Pensive, organized and holistic are three words that perhaps best words to describe him off of it.
The Browns second-round pick in this year's draft, Owusu-Koramoah has proven already what a draft steal he was with his 57 total tackles, 1.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and four passes defended so far in his rookie campaign.
Owusu-Koramoah's hard work is shown in practice and training, but his dedication to his craft, and his body he puts on the line each day, is apparent off the field as well. The linebacker studies the game non-stop, taking color-coded notes and analyzing every area of his performances, his team's performance and each opponent. But he also has a very detailed approach to his health as well.
"The main thing inside of health is diet first. I'm alkaline vegan, as some may know," Owusu-Koramoah said.
You're probably wondering what an alkaline vegan is. Like a traditional vegan diet that prohibits animal-based foods, an alkaline vegan diet also prohibits animal-based products, but takes even more into consideration and sticks to natural plant-based foods—restricting the diet to foods with higher pH chemical compositions like nutrient-rich vegetables, nuts, seeds fruits and herbs.
Those restrictions, in addition to no animal-products, can include no sugar or unnatural sugar alternatives, limited acidic food, no hybrid foods, no GMO food, no microwaved food, no pre-packaged foods and snacks, no processed white grains and drinking only natural spring water.
"I try to stay on that specific diet to be able to abstain from some of the stuff that may be in certain food so that's mainly what I do," Owusu-Koramoah said.
The belief of those on an alkaline vegan diet is that the compounds in such foods can help balance the body's pH levels which can in turn help optimize health in ways traditional Western medicine may not.
Like his diet, Owusu-Koramoah takes a holistic approach to his health and wellness, using his approach in addition to the more traditional measures—both in terms of staying healthy from a football standpoint and in regards to COVID-19.
"I kind of get into the holistic health with the herbs and things like that and that's kind of where my aim lies," Owusu-Koramoah said.
The rookie spreads his knowledge and approach to health with his teammates, helping care for them when they are feeling under the weather.
"I've helped some of the guys as they're sick. Brought them tonics and certain tinctures and some sea moss and some herbs and things like that to just be able to help a little bit and apply some of those things that I was using," Owusu-Koramoah said.
At the start of training camp, Owusu-Koramoah tested positive for COVID-19 and was out for 10 days. He was asymptomatic and while it's not clear what impact it had on him, he hopes that his holistic tips might help ease the effects of the virus for his teammates who test positive for it.
"Even when I had gotten the COVID I was asymptomatic and I wasn't sick at all in my book, I was feeling okay," Owusu-Koramoah said.
But while Owusu-Koramoah chooses holistic medicine as his go-to, he also knows that traditional medicine has it's values and doesn't shy away from it when need be.
"It's just about health first in terms of diet and then we can move on to the extra medicines and the vaccines and the extra stuff that science may apply, first and foremost, but we try to push forth a good diet," he said.
And with COVID-19 on his mind, Owusu-Koramoah is following other best practices to avoid the virus, like not going out too much.
"If I need to get something to eat I'll probably go out to get something to eat but after that I'm not going go-karting, I'm not out at a jazz club or something like that," Owusu-Koramoah said. "If I'm going out I'll go eat or whatever, sit down and then after that I bounce."
Camryn Justice is a digital content producer at News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Twitter @camijustice.
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