The myth that plant-eaters don’t get enough protein is ready for an upgrade, says Will.i.am, frontman of the Black Eyed Peas and star of ITV’s The Voice.
The 42-year-old artist went vegan a few months back to address some health issues; his health improved dramatically once he adopted a vegan diet.
“When you go to the doctor and he says, ‘You have high cholesterol and blood pressure and I’m going to provide you with pills’ you’re like, ‘Pills? I’m 42. Why do I need to be taking the pills that my uncle takes? He’s 60-plus,’” he told the Evening Standard.
That pushed Will.i.am to a wellness retreat and a vegan diet. “It took me 10 days to drop my cholesterol. I lost 8lb, my blood pressure came down. In 10 days my skin cleared up and my breathing was right.”
The shift in his own health then led him to explore meat-eating on a deeply personal level:
“I thought about what I was eating — I was gnawing on flesh, dead animal. And if you think about it, it’s kind of sick. Imagine you’re hungry — almost starving. You have a bushel of broccoli, and then a chicken walks by. Are you going to rush the chicken, no utensils, and just eat it? Defeather it — eat the skin and cartilage, no seasoning and salt? No, you’re going to dive into that bushel of fricking broccoli. Turns out gorillas are buff as f***. They have big-ass muscles, they just eat leaves and sh**. Rhinos are tough as gladiators and they aren’t gnawing on people,” he said.
The musician is in good company. A number of musicians now follow a vegan or predominantly plant-based diet for the health and environmental benefits as well as for ethical reasons. Fellow musician Moby has been vegan for more than thirty years. Sir Paul McCartney is a longtime vegan as is his daughter, the fashion designer Stella McCartney. Miley Cyrus is an outspoken vegan; the artist appeared at the Met Gala this past week in a design by Stella McCartney and vegan shoes from MINK. “I want to bring a message, which is veganism and that there doesn’t have to be torture in fabulous fashion,” Cyrus told reporters.
Image Credit: Will.i.am/Facebook