The Cameroon-born defender has lost his place in the France international side with Clement Lenglet – his Barca teammate – often preferred in both line-ups, while Gerard Pique is still first choice central defender at the Camp Nou.
He has been beset by injury and fitness problems in recent years and has now revealed the drastic changes to his diet in order to benefit his career.
Now aged 26, Umtiti is yet to feature under Ronald Koeman due to an ongoing knee injury that was sustained in early July, to continue the defender’s injury frustration in recent seasons.
Umtiti told Canal Football Club, as per Diario Sport: “I became vegan, I do not eat meat or fish. I take it very seriously, I don’t even eat pasta, now I take vegetable protein, which makes you feel great. I lost three kilos and the truth is that I needed it.
“I think it will make a big difference in my career – I have never felt better.”
Ronald Araujo has also been promoted to the first-team squad while Barcelona transfer news has also linked them with a return for Manchester City defender Eric Garcia, although no move materialised this summer.
Umtiti was heavily linked with an exit from Barcelona this summer due to his high wage and lack of first-team opportunities, but he has stayed at the club for now.