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Chaka Khan Speaks Out On Her Battle With Diabetes

June 25th, 2012 5:15pm EDT

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Soul legend Chaka Khan has been diagnosed with diabetes.

The I'm Every Woman hitmaker, 59, learned she had the blood sugar condition last year and the health revelation was the kickstart she needed to inspire her to lose weight and take better care of herself.

Khan also credits winning custody of her young granddaughter with making her more determined to slim down, and she managed to shed 60 pounds after embarking on a drastic weight loss program, which involved fasting and adopting a vegan diet.

She tells lifestyle website Essence.com, "I had diabetes type two and high blood pressure. I adopted my 10-year-old granddaughter last year. I have to be there for her.

"I knew I couldn't go out like this so I just fasted for, like, a month, then I went vegan and went off meats and all dairy and anything with eyes. If I have a craving for a little baked fish or something I might eat it. But that's about it. I've mostly been doing a lot of high-protein foods and a lot of vegetables and exercise...

"I felt like I need to heal my body, so I would just fast and eat no meat, no dairy. I've never been a fan of meat, dairy and sugar. And when I developed diabetes last year I said, 'Oh OK, I'm not going to be here long. A change is coming.' So I started getting my mindset, then I started the fasting."

But Khan admits she's not a fan of working out to keep the excess weight off her new slimmer frame: "I don't like exercising at all. I guess if I had one (exercise) of choice it would be walking. I do not run and I'm losing, like, on average about five pounds a month. I've lost 60 pounds since October."

 Khan was awarded permanent guardianship of her then-10 year old granddaughter in December after claiming her son and the kid's mother were incapable of caring for the girl as a result of drug abuse.

Photo Credits: chuck tuck / PR Photos