What do Waka Flocka Flame, Russell Simmons, and Mya have in common? Not only are they some of the biggest names in music, they’re also part of the growing vegan movement that’s sweeping up everyone from RZA to Ne-Yo and Jhené Aiko to Raury.
Health was Waka’s inspiration after his weight ballooned in 2014. “I was fat. I had stretch marks. . . . I just got tired of it,” he says. But the “Round of Applause” hitmaker slimmed down after trying vegan meals, and he says, “I got on stage, I felt better. My attitude was better. Like, everything about me was better.”
Russell, who’s been vegan for nearly 20 years, adds, “It’s the 100 billion animals that I worry about . . . . When you’re looking at your plate … you see the process of the throats being slit, the mistreatment of animals, the souls that they do have.”
And Mýa agrees: “So now it’s a lifelong commitment, because now I can’t turn back.” She notes that she went vegan over three years ago when she learned about the meat industry’s impact on human health. “I was awakened to things that my parents didn’t know,” she says. “I was raised on pork … steak, chicken, everything. . . . And everyone in my family pretty much of the older generation has diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, cancer. My mother is a two-time cancer survivor.”