HEALTH

Bill Clinton: From McDonald's to vegan

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From "fat kid" to vegan poster boy, former president Bill Clinton did a complete 180 with his eating habits--and couldn't feel better.

Clinton, famously known for stopping at a McDonald's after jogging, described himself as a "fat kid" who weighed 185 pounds by the age of 13.

Campaign aides said it was typical for him to eat five or six meals a day during his race for president.

However, junk food and a family history of heart disease caught up with him. Since leaving office a decade ago the former president has undergone two separate heart procedures.

In 2010, a blistering email from a friend and doctor about his diet and the incentive to lose weight for daughter Chelsea's wedding caused him to make a radical change and go vegan.

"I essentially concluded that I just played Russian roulette because even though I had changed my diet some and cut down on the caloric total of my ingestion and cut back on how much high-cholesterol food I was eating, I still was taking in a lot of extra cholesterol," Clinton said.

See PHOTOS of Clinton's vegan transformation

Dr. Neal Barnard heads D.C.-based Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. He advocates a diet free of meat, dairy, egg and cheese for helping to reverse heart disease.

"You can actually open up those arteries again and it's not by surgery and it's not by prescriptions," Barnard said. "It's by changing what you eat."

For a list of vegan-friendly restaurants in the D.C., Va. and Md. areas, go here.

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