Wholesome Bellies was created from my passion for healthy eating and cooking. A home cook since my teens, I grew up in the hospitality industry, spending most weekends since my early teens at our family restaurant. My mum was the head chef and I was surrounded by incredible cooks.
Wholesome Bellies is a resource to help you create simple, nourishing, plant-based meals in your kitchen. My intention is to inspire you to fall in love with vegetables, and learn how to transform plants into mouth-watering, unbelievable meals your friends and family will keep coming back for.
What began as a ‘side hustle’ blog and social media page a couple of years back has evolved into a collection of free recipes, hands-on cooking classes, a soon to be released cooking membership platform, a range of funky merchandise and a growing community that are falling in love with wholefoods more and more every day.
It was in 2007 when my philosophy around food and health took a sharp turn. The sudden passing of my father that year from a heart attack, prompted me to question everything about health. I couldn’t understand why my healthy, 60-year old father was taken from us so early. Six months after his passing, I was at Unleash the Power, a Tony Robbins event, and the last day of the seminar was all about health and vitality. People talk about those life changing moments; those light bulb moments, where something major shifts inside them. That’s the best way I can describe that day.
I left that seminar with a whole new outlook on health and well being and dove deep into vegetarianism and a plant-based lifestyle. I slowly moved towards a wholefoods diet, removing meat, seafood, dairy, refined sugars and flours. I learned the healing power of plants and the importance of eating food as close to its whole form.
As a child I grey up enjoying a varied diet, including meat, diary and vegetables. And I was healthy kid with no regrets on how I was raised. After all, my mum was a chef so we ate incredible food. What I did begin to realise was the impact our diet has on us, not just today, but for the future. We may feel healthy today, but sometimes our body doesn’t show the signs until much later.
I have also have struggled in my adult years ‘giving up’ the less nutrient dense foods, such as white sugars and refined, processed foods. I’ve really had to re-educate myself and train my palette to enjoy new flavours.
Over the past 13 years I have continued to educate myself around plant-based eating. I’ve re-created so many traditional recipes my mum taught me to suit my eating preferences. I’ve created new flavours and experimented with ingredients that were once foreign to me. Today, my diet is predominately plant-based. I occasionally have dairy and eggs; I do indulge in pasta from time to time, and still love my sweet treats.
Together with my husband, we are raising our two children (now 7 and 9) 95% plant-based, with the inclusion of some dairy and fish. And our family thrives as a predominantly plant-based tribe.
I want my kids to grow up with a broad palette. I want them to understand why we eat the way we do and ultimately, I want to empower them to make positive food choices.
I’m not here to convince you to become 100% plant-based. It’s not for everyone, and I totally understand that. No judgement here, and that’s a promise.
I’m focused on encouraging as many people as possible to eat more vegetables and cook more food from scratch. And that’s as complicated as I get. If that means you add a few plant-based meals to your week – great! If that means once a week you make a meal from scratch – great! It’s all about progress and giving it a go.
I’m all about being kind to yourself, removing the overwhelm and giving new things a try.
What I do know, is that we all need to eat more vegetables and fruit, we all need to eat more whole foods and less food from a packet. And this is no big secret!
So, I hope you’ll follow me, embark on a new journey for yourself and fall in love with plant-based eating and cooking as I have done.