I help people to create healthy mind live happier, healthier lives by showing them how they can nourish (not punish themselves through food, gentle exercise & wellbeing. I work with people to help them change their mind-set around nourishing living and show them how it can be all about eating, exercising and living in a way that makes you feel GREAT about yourself. No more faddy diets, punishing exercise regimes or January health kicks. Life is too short, so let’s just Nourish and NOT Punish our bodies.
My biological father walked out on me and my mum before I was even born. And that simple fact is a big reason why I grew up seeking approval from everyone around me, doubting my worth and punishing myself for the way I looked.
I grew up around strong women, being raised by a single mum and being cared for by my nan when my mum was at work.
My nan is a great cook and she would cook the most incredible meals and show her love by making sure we never went hungry. Her cooking consisted of delicious, creamy dumplings and sugary cakes as well as always a big Sunday lunch each week, where about 15 of us would cram around a tiny table and eat together, and then afterwards argue over whose turn it was to wash up! Growing up, food was a privilege and I loved my nan’s food. The only thing I didn’t love that she cooked back then was all of the fermented foods, like kefir. I was always tasked with going to the dairy to pick up ingredients for her. I hated it, the smell was awful, haha.
From the age of 12, I started cooking for myself more and more and discovered an even deeper love for food and mixing flavours. But then at 15 I moved to the second largest city in Czech Republic to go to secondary school. I lived away from my family during the week in a girl’s boarding home on a very tight budget. I used to eat cheap bread rolls, processed food, pot noodles, basically the easiest and cheapest food I could get my hands on. Back then I didn’t realise that this food was having a negative impact on my health. I suddenly felt so alone, surrounded by girls who were tall and skinny, suddenly there was a pressure to look and behave in a certain way to be accepted.
This new environment caused my insecurities, that were planted by my dad leaving, to bubble up again. I would tell myself I wasn’t good enough, pretty enough, thin enough and this resulted in an eating disorder. I used to starve myself through the whole day and wouldn’t eat much, apart from one piece of fruit. Sometimes, I didn’t even drink water, as I felt that it was bloating me too much. Then in the evenings, I would normally demolish everything I found at home and end up throwing up everything I ate, as I was feeling disgusted with myself. The eating disorder was just the top of a downwards spiral, because it negatively impacted my health and my skin would break out. This only led to me feeling worse about myself, and the vicious cycle went round and round. I tried all sorts of dangerous diets, I would get into binge eating and that led to bulimia. My need for approval from others and to be accepted and loved had taken me to a dark place.
When I finished school, I wanted to change the scenery and start fresh and escape everything around me. I moved to the UK, a completely different country, language, and culture. Let me tell you, it was terrifying!
English food was a huge shock to the system for me. There was lots of deep fried and processed foods so easily available and this change in my diet affected my weight and my skin to break out.
I eventually got frustrated with always feeling sluggish, tired, bloated and depressed, I decided to change my life. Step by step, I started slowly unpicking my negative relationship with food, and learned about what was and wasn’t good for my body and mind.
And then at 30, I had a cervical cancer scare. I had numerous cervical biopsies, followed by other procedures that, despite getting an all-clear, are still ongoing today. For the first time in years, confronted by the fear of my cervical cancer scare, I acknowledged how beautiful and important my body is. I started looking into how I could get healthier and living a more balanced lifestyle. I realised I have one body, and one life and I needed to cherish both.
Over the last 4 years, I’ve became more and more passionate about food, fitness, and wellbeing and how a blend of all three can help you heal and look after your mind, body and soul. I noticed that with more nourishing food, gentle exercise and mindfulness, my self-love started to improve and I felt much happier in myself.
I noticed more and more the relationship between nourishing food, exercise and wellbeing, when you nourish yourself (and not punish yourself as I used to) in all of these three areas you can live a much happier, healthier life.
This was something I KNEW I had to share with others. I wanted to help other women who’d struggled with their self-worth, body-image, relationships with food to see that there is a way to nourish yourself and be happy, rather than punish yourself and constantly be going after another version of ourselves that we feel we need to be.
I didn’t have a helping hand to guide me out of the place where I was punishing my body to show me a way of nourishing myself and finding that self-acceptance, but I don’t want anyone to have to go through that alone, so that’s what I do now, help people live happier, healthier lives by helping them nourish themselves through food, gentle exercise and wellbeing. If this is you and you are not sure where to start then contact me or, check out my online body balance/yoga classes or check out my Self Love Retreat coaching program which may help you to turn your life around and encourage you to change your lifestyle.