New York Mayor Eric Adams has finally admitted to eating fish. After reports surfaced over the weekend that the mayor was caught cheating on his vegan diet, Adams refused Monday morning to confirm or deny the rumors, only to confess hours later. that he had “occasionally” indulged.
“I’m not going down that rabbit hole what are you eating? … I don’t do that,” Adams said Monday morning as he stood in front of a plastic fruit and vegetable table at a press conference to announce the rollout of “lifestyle medicine” services in New York City Health + hospitals. The program will teach patients about healthy habits, including how to eat more plant-based foods.
“The more plant-based you eat, the better and healthier you are. That’s my (response) to those who follow me around restaurants wondering what I’m ordering. Look, I don’t do that. It’s is noise to me,” Adams told a reporter who asked if he ate fish.
At the end of the day, as controversy mounted in the national media and was dubbed “Fishgate”, Adams gave in to indulgence.
“I want to be a role model for people who follow or aspire to follow a plant-based diet, but, as I said, I’m perfectly imperfect and have eaten fish at times,” he reportedly said. said in a statement.
His exchange with a reporter at Monday’s press conference marked a rare instance of Adams rejecting an opportunity to talk about his diet. Moments earlier, he recounted how he changed his eating habits when he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, repeating a talking point that has been a big part of his personal brand. He published a cookbook of plant-based recipes and was featured in a short film by Forks Over Knives, which produces documentaries on the benefits of plant-based diets. Since Adams’ election in November, at least two local grocery stores gave their name to vegan wraps.
He’s also used the vegan hook to help promote his policies, such as the new lifestyle services launched on Monday, which fulfilled a campaign promise based on a similar initiative he championed as chairman of the borough of Brooklyn. The programs, which will be available at six hospital sites, will be accessible to people with heart disease, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, prediabetes and obesity-related health conditions. After announcing the effort, Adams put on an apron and demonstrated how to make a herbal chili pepper.
Last week, Adams introduced a new “Vegan Fridays” menu at public schools. Cafeteria lunches garnered poor reviews accompanied by less than appetizing photos. “I believe as much as you do in the power of healthy eating, but that’s not it,” said Senator Jessica Ramos. tweeted to the mayor, alongside a bag of sliced apples, baked tortilla chips, and a mix of zucchini, corn, and mushrooms.
Speculation around Adams’ eating habits began to swirl on Saturday when Politico published an article about his power dinners that quoted an unnamed employee of one of the mayor’s favorite restaurants, Osteria La Baia, as saying he frequently ate meat. fish. “He’s not vegan. He’s a pescatarian,” the employee reportedly said. Later reports claimed that sources had seen him eat chicken and even beef.
While a spokesperson for Adams initially told Politico he doesn’t eat fish, the mayor has avoided claiming vegan purity in the past. When City & State asked the mayor in October if he was deviating from his diet, he replied, “I don’t like to think in terms of ‘cheating’ or ‘failure,’ but rather ‘reducing “. If I make a mistake and eat something I shouldn’t have eaten, I promise to do better tomorrow. We are all in the same boat. No one should blame themselves for tripping,” Adams wrote in an email.
He also described how his views on veganism evolved to include animal rights and environmental aspects. He said he wanted to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, in part, by reducing meat consumption among residents. And his “Vegan Fridays” plan has been celebrated by prominent animal rights groups NYCLASS and Voters for Animal Rights.
“As a city, the less animal products we consume, the better our lives will be, the better the lives of the animals, and the better the planet will be,” Adams wrote in October.
In some ways, the Adams diet is even stricter than veganism allows. He doesn’t eat olive oil and swears junk food.
“Some people want to call me vegan. Vegans eat Oreos and drink Coca Cola. I don’t,” Adams said Monday as he coined a new term to describe his eating habits.
“I eat a plant-centered life,” he repeatedly said.