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President Bill Clinton's Heart Healthy Vegan Diet

August 29, 2011

Celebrities turning to a vegan diet have been making quite a splash in the media. Everyone from Alicia Silverstone to Mike Tyson has converted to a healthy, vegan lifestyle. The newest public figure to join the club: former US president, Bill Clinton. A man famous for his love of Big Macs and French fries while in office, his new dietary decision may have come as a surprise to Americans. But after two serious health scares, including triple bi-pass heart surgery in 2004, changing his diet may have saved his life. He tells Dr. Gupta in a CNN interview, that his new lifestyle was necessary to improve his health:

“I essentially concluded that I had played Russian roulette,” Clinton said, “because even though I had changed my diet some and cut down on the caloric total of my ingestion and cut back on much of the cholesterol in the food I was eating, I still — without any scientific basis to support what I did — was taking in a lot of extra cholesterol without knowing if my body would produce enough of the enzyme to support it, and clearly it didn’t or I wouldn’t have had that blockage. So that’s when I made a decision to really change.”

While it is wonderful that President Clinton is happier and healthier on his new vegetarian and dairy-free diet, it is important to remember that being a vegan is not for everyone. Of course, no one needs fast food or packaged food high in sodium and trans fats, but before you declare yourself a full-fledged vegan, make sure that a diet void of all animal products is right for your body.

 

According to bio-individuality, every person is different and has uniquely individual nutrition requirements. Depending on your age, gender, natural body shape, metabolic rate, blood type, and even cultural descent, everyone needs different foods and nutrients to feel their best. For example, people of Scandinavian descent might need a diet that includes high-quality dairy whereas people from Japan might need a lot of seafood and rice to feel their best. Consider eliminating foods one at a time to see how you feel with out them in you diet or consult your doctor or Health Coach to figure out what type of diet is right for you.

If you do decide that a vegan diet is for you, that’s great too! Just remember to get plenty of plant-based proteins and fats such as dark, leafy greens or nuts in your diet so that your body continues to get the nutrients it needs.

If you are already vegan, do you have any advice for anyone that is considering becoming a vegan? 

Check out Dr. Gupta's interview with Former President Bill Clinton Here: