I’ve been gluten free and on a restricted diet since 2000.  I was diagnosed with coeliac disease after years of physical emaciation. I dropped to 10 stone and a 28 waist at 38. The doctor in Yorkshire pulled no punches. When I went back for the umpteenth time – “You look terminally ill. I’m phoning the hospital for an emergency admission.”

I feared bowel cancer but after tests, fasts and scopes, gluten was revealed as the culprit and I’ve been on that diet for 17 years now.

Vegetarian to vegan

Vegetarianism has been in the Walton household for less time. From 2013 when son James at 12 years old (now 19 at Cardiff University) decided meat was murder.

In the past two weeks, after revulsion dicing chicken where I nearly gagged, me, my wife and daughter perversely decided to become vegetarian after moaning about son’s moral choices for six years. I’ve gone vegan.

Hypocrisy at its finest I know.

On Friday though, I left my foxy home office to watch Toy Story 4 with daughter Ruby on Apple TV and on Sunday, surfing Netflix, I stumbled upon The Game Changers, which a few people had mentioned to me on social media.

Go watch it and decide.

Therefore the basic premise is scientific – meat, fish and eggs does nothing for us as humans and is as misplaced as saying smoking was cool and safe in the 1940s. Gladiators didn’t eat meat, oxen are herbivores (the strongest animal allegedly) and a whole raft of sporting celebrities were showcased for their success on plant-based diets.

I was convinced.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’ve not done this for environmental reasons (I drive a new gas guzzling BMW X3 #humblebrag); I used to go fishing and have no real moral objection to meat eating.

I want to live longer – and the evidence for improved health and lifespan from adopting a vegan diet seems pretty strong to me.

  • Think of animals as protein middle men or women. They are herbivores and we eat them with the protein that they’ve acquired from plants being diluted.
  • Our teeth are not designed to eat meat – they are made to crush nuts and plant material.
  • Cholesterol levels in the New York Fire Department dropped when plant based diets were adopted.
  • One of the world’s strongest men is vegan.
  • Lewis Hamilton, Novak Djokovic and the Williams sisters are too.
  • Certain plants have more protein too than meat – even the humble iceberg lettuce beats a steak it is said!

Now I’m not doing this to emulate their sporting prowess, I’m being selfish.

I would like to live until beyond 100.

To see my children grow into adults and watch whether Brexit will be resolved by 2065.

Above all, I don’t want to build up this nice business and suffer heart disease as a result of poor dietary choices and lack of exercise.

I don’t drink, I don’t smoke, I don’t eat animal products. I’m now vegan.

Finally, if you’ve not seen the movie, have a look at the trailer here and get on Netflix and chill?