Who would have thought the president most famous for his penchant for fast food burgers would ever be hailed by PETA? But in some most unexpected news, Bill Clinton has been named as "Person of the Year" by the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
And just when we thought Lady Gaga had it in the bag.
Forget the fact that Clinton once dined on a double burger, fries, onion rings, and a milkshake on the eve of an obesity conference. Or the fact that he was so well known for his regular trips to a certain fast food joint that Saturday Night Live did a hilarious skit about it. Bubba has seen the light, embraced a vegan diet, and impressed PETA along the way.
"Thanks to his new plant-based diet, he's shed some pounds, decreased his risk of future heart problems, and spared the lives of many animals," PETA said in a statement.
His change of habits was prompted by his previous heart problems as well as daughter Chelsea's wedding. His says the difference he's seen since making the switch has been remarkable.
“I live on beans, legumes, vegetables, fruit. I drink a protein supplement every morning. No dairy,” he recently told CNN's Wolf Blitzer. “It changed my whole metabolism and I lost 24 pounds, and I got back to basically what I weighed in high school.”
He went on to cite research that found 82 of people who follow a vegan diet have "begun to heal themselves." Pretty amazing, and PETA notes a few other benefits as well:
"By choosing a plant-based diet, President Clinton has spared the lives of nearly 200 animals a year and reduced his risk of cancer, strokes, and other diseases. Of course, the reasons for going vegan don't end there. The meat industry also contributes to world hunger, exploits workers, and devastates the environment."
Definitely food -- or lack thereof -- for thought. It's hard to believe that someone like Bill Clinton could make such a drastic lifestyle change, but I guess it's pretty motivating when you see such drastic improvements in your health as well.
Are you vegan? If not, does Bill Clinton's experience make you want to try the lifestyle?
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