Veganism is growing worldwide; it’s estimated that there are around 15.5m vegans in the United States and approximately 80m worldwide. It’s an impressive figure that is set to continue to rise as people become aware of the benefits of switching over.
There are also a number of myths around veganism that some people feel act as a barrier to new converts adopting the diet. They’re often myths such as veganism is expensive, restrictive in terms of flavors, or it doesn’t give you enough protein. Some people see vegans as awkward, ruining a good trip to a steakhouse, or only socializing with other like-minded meat dodgers. For every converted vegan, you’ll likely find someone else waiting to tell you how veganism is bad for you.
Luckily, a number of high-profile people are fully behind veganism, and their voices are now being heard. As we explored in our piece ‘Reasons You Should Consider a Vegan Diet’, there are plenty of positives for going plant-based. When you consider the words of these famous people, there are increasingly fewer reasons why you shouldn’t.
Travis Barker – Veganism Doesn’t Give You Protein
Travis Barker was once famous for being in pop-punk bands Blink 182 and The Transplants, but he’s now commonly associated with his wife Kourtney Kardashian. Drummer Barker has two children from his previous marriage and has tried to raise them as vegans too.
He spoke of the excess energy he found he had after turning vegan, dispelling the notion that a lack of protein from a vegan diet can leave you feeling washed out. “Ever since I found this way of eating [plant-based], I have endless amounts of energy…I can go all day, and after it all, I never find myself getting tired. No matter what kind of shows I have done or workouts I do on top of it, I still have to force myself to sleep at night.” If veganism meant Barker lacked protein, over time, he would lose muscle mass and feel lethargic, something that has not happened.
Daniel Negreanu – Veganism is Boring
Daniel Negreanu is a poker player and a very good one at that. He has six World Series of Poker bracelets and an estimated net worth in excess of $30m. He’s one of the best-known poker players on the circuit but is an anomaly in a world often associated with drinking, smoking and excess. He’s a vegan and an incredibly healthy one at that. Not only that, but he has an incredible array of different foods he takes to tournaments which underline the rich and varied options available to today’s vegans.
“I pack protein bars and snacks from Go Raw like chocolate cookies made of coconut, dates, sesame seeds, and cocoa—everything’s organic,” he said. “They also have these little crackers that taste like pizza, but they’re just made of organic seeds and tomato.” The variation doesn’t stop there either – he’s even turned other pros to his way of thinking with delicious food. “I had 12 bags of food delivered to the casino floor from an Asian-themed vegan restaurant called Loving Hut. I was handing it out at the poker tables; everyone loved it.”
Natalie Portman – Vegans Are Not Anti-Social
Natalie Portman is a Hollywood megastar and perhaps more famous than the two celebrities we’ve already picked. She was just 13 when she made her first movie, Leon, and has since won an Oscar for her role in Black Swan. She’s starred in Heat, Thor: Love and Thunder and three Star Wars movies. She is also known for her activism and is a committed and devout vegan.
Portman is often dispelling myths about veganism. One myth is that vegans can be anti-social and a bit militant, only dating other vegans; Portman laughed this off in an interview with Pop Sugar, explaining, “My husband isn’t vegan at all; he eats everything. I date him every day!” She addressed whether she has forced her kids to be vegan or refuses to go to barbeques with friends where there’s meat. “No, everyone gets to decide for themselves because we’re all free individuals. I like to hang out with people who eat whatever they want to eat because people should make those decisions for themselves.”