Eight years ago, Kane Lim stepped gingerly onto a scale in his home in Los Angeles and was gutted by what he saw.
But it was not until three years ago that the 32-year-old Singaporean – who has grappled with weight and self-esteem issues all his life – underwent a metamorphosis, thanks to Buddhism. “That was when I turned vegetarian and all my weight fell off,” he says.
This radical makeover, however, impacted Lim in more ways than one. It taught him compassion for himself and others, he says.
In person, he comes across as more grounded than what his Instagram feed or Bling Empire persona suggest. “Can you imagine if I was rich and good-looking?” he says with a laugh. “Oh my god, I’d be an a**hole.”
He is lounging at Happy Fish swim school in Bedok, seemingly oblivious to the stares he draws. His family recently invested in the school, which has 13 centres across Singapore and Malaysia.