Today’s interview is with Natalie Palmer, an inspirational lady that went from eating the typical Caribbean diet that included lots of meat and animal based products to becoming a Raw Vegan Culinary Chef and Educator. She enjoys remaking her local dishes into much healthier vegan versions. In fact, Natalie is certified in many areas of holistic life:
-Raw Culinary Arts Associate Chef (Living Light Culinary Institute)
-Raw Pastry Chef (Living Light Culinary Institute)
-Holistic Health Coach (Institute of Integrative Nutrition)
-Certified Living Foods Lifestyle Coach (Ann Wigmore Natural Health Institute)
-Certified member of AADP (American Association of Drugless Practitioners)
-Health Minister (Hallelujah Acres), just to name a few.
Her passions are educating the public on the dangers of SAD diet and lifestyle, and creating unique, life giving raw recipes. I can’t help but be inspired by her. Scroll down to watch a video of her many colorful and yummy dishes.
What made you decide to switch to Plant Based diet and lifestyle?
One day I decided to do a 30 day raw foods and juice detox from Dr. Shultz. After doing the cleanse I felt so good that I made a decision to start eating Plant Based for the rest of my life. I decided that I would no longer eat anything that had a mother, a father, or a face.
Also, I didn’t like how the animals are raised in the United States, and how meat is being prepared for consumption. Most of it contains chemicals, antibiotics, and soy. The animals are corn fed, GMO everywhere… I could go on and on.
Who or what is your biggest inspiration?
My biggest inspiration is and comes from God.
What’s your favorite dish?
It would definitely be a Raw Pizza!
What’s your favorite Plant Based book, movie or website?
I don’t have a favorite cookbook, but I enjoy inventing my own recipes in my kitchen “Lab”. Every day I come up with new creations, then go home and try them. Growing up in the Caribbean I never used a cookbook. As a young teenager I was just doing my thing in the kitchen. When it came to preparing meals we did what some would call ‘soul cooking’. I learned that from my grandmother and my mom! So I transferred that skill to my new way of eating, which is Vegan, Raw, and Living Foods.
What is your goal in life?
My goal is to have a lifestyle and wellness center. I’d like to create a place where people can come and experience the natural energy of food as medicine.
What’s your biggest weakness/temptation in your Plant Based journey and how do you cope with it?
That would easily be overdosing on nuts! I have now stopped buying them in bulk. Instead, I focus more on seeds. I use nuts only as needed for when I have guests over, or creating a dish for someone.
What advice would you give to those wanting to become Plant Based Vegan?
First, get as much knowledge as possible. Veganism is not mainstream, there is a lot of mis-information on how to thrive on a Plant Based diet. I believe that’s one of the main reasons people fall off the wagon.
Next, be fully convicted in your mind why you are eating a Plant Based diet, and fully understand its benefits and challenges. Work with someone to ensure that you have a balanced approach to Plant Based to avoid deficiencies. Eating this way doesn’t mean that you will never get sick. Also, don’t go eating vegan ‘junk,’ highly processed, fat filled, sugar foods. You will still need to chose your food wisely, and eat foods that are non-GMOs, conscious about your IG health and what foods and lifestyle choices impact it. You’ll still need to be concerned about the level of toxicity in your life, your ability to absorb the nutrients from the food you eat, make detoxification an important part of your life and be mindful about proper elimination.
Finally, ensure you are getting sufficient Plant Based proteins, enough vitamin D, B12, Iron and essential fatty acids (more omega 3 than 6).
What’s been the one biggest benefit of Plant Based diet and lifestyle for you?
People say that I look much younger than my age, and don’t suffer from any of the common lifestyle diseases. Praise the Lord for that!