A former body builder, who once abused drugs and alcohol, says he owes his life to a vegan diet.
Liam Russell, 30, decided to change his lifestyle after the sudden death of his father due to heart failure, aged just 55 years old, which gave him a wake up call.
Not only did Liam ditch the drugs and booze, he also switched from eating meat to adopting a plant-based diet in 2012.
Now he has gone one step further and set up his own vegan restaurant ’13th Element’, which opened its doors for the first time on Thursday, January 30th, at the Intu Centre, in Nottingham.
Following his father’s death Liam decided he wanted to be healthy and live longer for his son.
“My Dad had a very unhealthy lifestyle – one that I followed. He smoked heavily and after work he’d be in the pub drinking. I grew up thinking that was a normal life,” he said.
“My dad loved to eat rubbish food and I looked at myself and thought I’m overweight, I’m smoking, doing drugs and drinking… I needed to change.”
Liam taught himself how to change his diet; “I didn’t actually understand micro-nutrience and good quality carbohydrates, proteins and fats. I educated myself.”
Since 2012, he has gone from 16st to 11.7lbs.
“I was in pain, you know. I wanted out, I wanted this to stop.
So it was definitely the right way for me.”
LIAM RUSSELL, OWNER OF 13th ELEMENT
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Carri'beyond' @nottsstreetfood 30th Jan – 1st March beyond meat pattie topped with cheese that sits on a bed of lettuce mayo then topped with our homemade sweetcorn salsa and a rich smoky bbq sauce and served in a brioche style bun #vegan #veganfood #vegansofig #plantbased #veganism #veganlife #govegan #whatveganseat #veganfoodshare #vegansofinstagram #veganuary #nottingham #beyondburger
Liam, who used to be a Tesco delivery driver, was vegan before it became the widely popular lifestyle it is today, which has now been adopted by around one per cent of the population.
13th Element is open Thursday to Sunday, until March 1st.
- If the world went vegan, it could save 8 million human lives by 2050, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by two thirds and lead to healthcare-related savings and avoided climate damages of $1.5 trillion. Source
- If the UK population was killed at the rate farmed animals are killed around the world, it would end in just 11 hours. Sources: , , 
- Over a billion farmed animals in Britain are killed each year in slaughterhouses. Source
- Over 10 million pigs, 15 million sheep, 14 million turkeys, 15 million ducks and geese, 982 million broiler chickens, 50 million ‘spent hens’, 2.6 million cattle, 4.5 billion fish and 2.6 billion shellfish are killed in the UK each year – over 8 billion animals. Source
- Interest in ‘veganism’ increased seven fold in the five years between 2014 and 2019, according to Google trends. It now gets almost four times more interest than vegetarian and gluten free.Visit the Vegan Society website for more.