Madeleine ShawHealth Coach | Yoga Teacher | Bestselling Author
My food philosophy is all about enlivening the hottest, happiest and healthiest you. It’s about keeping things simple and delicious so you don’t feel bored or deprived. Food is the most powerful drug; it informs not just how we look but how we feel and think too. My philosophy stems from my desire to educate people about this – and to show how healthy food can be delicious, nutritious, affordable and simple to make. I wasn’t always this healthy, in fact as a young girl I had quite a torturous relationship with food and my body. My life was a cycle of depriving and binging – not much fun at all. I had dull skin, lank hair and no energy; I slept all the time and found it hard to concentrate or even sit through a film. Unsurprisingly this approach to eating meant I developed terrible IBS, leaky gut and even lost my periods. It wasn’t one moment in time that made me take stock and re-think my life; it was a long, process but I think something, somewhere must have been going on inside me because I slowly began to realise that I had to change my destructive ways. This increasing awareness of my health drew me to move to Australia where I began reading about food and actually listening to my body, learning to give it what it needed. I started eating whole foods and found I was gradually falling back in love with food, life and, most important of all, myself. My taste buds bloomed, that 4pm energy slump was eliminated, my skin began to glow, calorie counting went out the window and I beamed from ear to ear. It is amazing when you give your body what it really desires; it is the most empowering feeling. I began work in an organic café in Sydney where I met amazing people who taught me how to properly source, prepare and cook food. And something clicked: it was as if I had suddenly hit upon my purpose in life. I enrolled in a course at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and haven’t looked back since! Sydney as a city is such an inspirational place. It makes you really want to take care of your body, get out there on the beautiful beaches and lap up the endless summers. Your surroundings are incredibly important but not everyone can or wants to live on the beach, and anyway the desire to be healthy has to come from within. I found my means of doing this and I want to share it with the world the kind of positive nourishment that turned my life around.
I taught the cooking class on the first ever Teen 'Mini' Yoga Retreat with Maudie