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President Bill Clinton Goes (Mostly) Vegan

President Bill Clinton Goes (Mostly) Vegan

Former president Bill Clinton has shocked many by announcing that he has adopted an almost completely vegan diet.

Citing his desire to lose weight and avoid more cardiovascular troubles, the former president told Wolf Blitzer he had sworn off all dairy, eggs, and all meat except for the “rare” small piece of fish.

Clinton had quadruple bypass in 2004 and earlier this year had to have surgery to supplement part of the surgery after complaining of mild chest pains. The follow-up surgery was a wake up call for Clinton, who appeared slightly emotional when he said it wasn’t something he wanted to go through again.

Most Americans remember Bill Clinton as a glutton and a fast food fanatic. Those of us who grew up during the Clinton presidency remember reports of his jogs to McDonald’s and the brilliant portrayals of the president by Phil Hartman on SNL.

But it turns out an old dog can learn new tricks.

In order to lose weight for his daughter Chelsea’s wedding, he gave up all dairy, eggs, and almost all meat. He has since lost 24 pounds and says he feels great.

Among other things, he said the famous book, The China Study influenced his decision and referenced studies of people who adopt a plant-based diet in order to cleanse their body of the cholesterol and calcium deposits that clog their arteries.

People on a plant-based diet consistently have lower rates of heart disease, and research by physicians such as Caldwell B. Esselstyn shows that a vegan diet can cure heart disease. Bill Clinton also mentioned Dr. Esselstyn in his interview with Blitzer.

The proven health benefits of a plant-based diet certainly increase Clinton’s chances of seeing his dream of helping his daughter and son-in-law to raise their grandchildren.

Even if issues of animal cruelty were not at the forefront of his decision, his decision is benefitting not just his own health, but the well-being of animals as well. If he followed through with being vegan he would not only rid himself of harmful chemicals like mercury that are found in seafood, but would be making a profound positive impact on the lives of sea creatures and the ocean ecosystem.

Let’s keep our fingers crossed.

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Photo: World Economic Forum

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511 comments

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5:08PM PDT on Apr 24, 2013

Thank you Mr.Clinton!! Can you please have a chat with the current 1st lady, Michelle Obama and kindly ask her to stop eating "Fois Gras"...kindly appreciated!!

5:05PM PST on Jan 19, 2013

Great news

12:43PM PST on Jan 18, 2013

I live in San Luis Obispo on the beautiful central coast. We have rolling hills dotted with cattle known as "Happy Cows" and they are... until you drive along the 101 on round up day. Beautiful animals on the way to death camps. No more happy cows and it is sad to see and not necessary.

10:07AM PST on Jan 18, 2013

More and more folks, famous and otherwise, are touting the benefits of vegetarian eating as well as vegan. Good to read about a former fast food fanatic going mostly vegan.

3:00AM PDT on Oct 15, 2010

I am proud of him for doing this not only for his health but also to promote eating less meat!

3:37PM PDT on Oct 10, 2010

This article makes me crave a big steak.

4:48PM PDT on Oct 8, 2010

billie, Chris Dodds, and Barney Frank should should be on bread and water after destroying our banks in their socialist scheme. Thanks for giving all our secret satellite guidance to the Red Chinese too, billie. You sure are a cute little thing, though.

4:33PM PDT on Oct 8, 2010

Good for him! I myself wouldn't be able to do it but oh well I'm a lacto-ovo pascatrian vegetarian and that's something...

11:29AM PDT on Oct 8, 2010

The media is misleading others on what is veganism and what it is not. Bill Clinton is not vegan for veganism encompasses eschewing all practices and products of nonhuman animal exploitation at once. He only tackled diet. Secondly, veganism stands for the justice that nonhuman animals are in dire need of. Health and environmental reasons are secondary. Thirdly, he will most likely not stick to a plant based diet if the acknowledgement of nonhuman animals doesn't come into play.

The definition of "vegan" is not flexible. Donald Watson created the term, therefore it us his definition that one must abide by when calling oneself or others "vegan". Why is this important? Because exploitative industries have used the terms "compassion" and "humane" and twisted it in their favor. Another thing: the term "vegetarian" is still widely misinterpreted so let's not misinterpret veganism please. It's the only hope that nonhuman animals have.

7:54AM PDT on Oct 8, 2010

Do you think there's any truth to the rumors that Hillary is sneaking a dollop of saltpeter into his smoothies?

: )

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