2nd September 2014
We’re so excited about our new Fruiteatox Vegan Eating Plan created by Olive’s Kitchen, so we thought it was time you got to know the girl behind the recipes. Read our exclusive interview to find out more about Olive and her journey to becoming a vegan.
Meet Olive: a 22-year-old London girl living by the sea.
Her Instagram account, @OlivesKitchen, features the most divine dishes served in idyllic locations, and her array of colours, textures and combinations have had us salivating over our iPhones for the past year; dispelling the myth that vegans live off a diet of bird feed and tofu.
However, Olive’s life wasn’t always this way. In summer 2013 Olive lived a relatively healthy lifestyle incorporating meat, fish and animal products into her diet. Although she was eating well, she never had time to listen to what her body really needed. Feeling lethargic, she decided to do something about it, and has since documented her journey to becoming fully vegan.
“Initially I went vegetarian as, firstly, I’m really against animal cruelty, but I also generally wanted to live a more natural lifestyle. As I looked more into the pros and the cons of vegetarianism Vs. veganism I realised that a lot of people seemed to go vegan for health-related reasons. At the time I was constantly tired, I had bad skin and no energy, so I gave it a go for one month and have never looked back”.
After being vegan for six weeks Olive noticed a dramatic difference in her skin and notably had more energy.
“Before becoming vegan I felt like I was abusing my body. Once I took a step back and decided it was time to change things up, I knew that it was more than my diet that needed to be adapted”.
Being vegan has led Olive to spend half of her week in London, where she studies Naturopathic Nutrition at The College of Naturopathic Medicine, and the other half on the South Coast, researching new recipes and ingredients.
“I’ll wake up early and start my breakfast straight away. I generally have oatmeal and fruit with a cup of Fruiteatox. Then I take my dog, Pepsi, for a walk on the beach, come home and make a green juice before doing some work”.
Olive always makes time to exercise, visiting to the gym 3-4 times per week to incorporate 30 minutes of cardio followed by 20 minutes of weights and a long stretching session before returning home to enjoy a post-workout salad.
She spends the afternoons studying for her pending diploma and exploring new ingredients to add to her ever-expanding catalogue of recipes.
“I make sure that I always have my evening meal before 6pm so that my food has time to digest before I sleep. A typical dinner for me would be courgette noodles with a yummy avocado whip, which is featured in the Fruiteatox Vegan Eating Plan. After dinner I take Pepsi for another little walk, then come home and chill out watching TV with a calming cup of Sleeptox and a sweet treat, such as one of my flapjacks or bliss balls, which are both super delicious”.
Olive’s day revolves around creating, amending and sharing her delicious recipes with friends, family and fans alike. She admits that it can be quite time-consuming to lead a balanced vegan lifestyle and always organizes her meals a day beforehand to ensure that she has all of the best quality ingredients needed to hand.
“A massive stereotype of being a vegan is the lack of variety, but realistically, I feel that being began actually gives you more choice. I love researching for new food as it opens up so many different options. First you need the knowledge; knowledge is power”.
There’s no shortage of options in Olive’s Fruiteatox Vegan Eating Plan, with everything from her low-carb Pad Thai to decadent desserts.
“I still eat cake, I’m a massive cake lover! I find it important to indulge and have treats when I want to – I’m human, everyone has cravings and it’s about learning to understand what your body needs. My favourite sweet treats are my Chocolate Kidney Bean Brownies and my Vegan Strawberry Cheesecake, which are both featured in the plan”.
Whether you’re interested in trying out a new way of eating, are dedicated to becoming vegan or simply want to introduce new foods to your diet, Olive’s advice is to work on one thing at a time to avoid overwhelming both your body and mind.
“If you’re starting off and veganism is completely new to you, then you just need to listen to your body. It’s incredibly important to drink plenty of water, tea and other natural liquids to stay hydrated. When I decided that I wanted to change my lifestyle I chose to focus on food first. Once you feel confident in that aspect you can then look at your fitness. I think it’s best to get at least half an hour of exercise in per day to keep your metabolism going, whether it’s a session at the gym or just being out and about walking the dog. It’s your own personal race, so the winner is always going to be you”.
Aside from conventional fears of a vegan diet being boring and unvaried, vegans also come under attack for the lack of protein included in their diet due to the omission of meat, fish and dairy products. To counteract this lack of animal-protein, Olive recommends eating lots of pulses, beans, legumes and super-foods (such as quinoa) to ensure that the body is getting enough protein for growth and repair. Each of her recipes include at least of one these protein sources, ensuring that a natural source of amino acids are provided daily.
Being vegan has not only transformed Olive’s body and skin, it has also broadened her mind and given her more confidence in her daily life.
“It’s nice to step back once in a while and see what changes you can make for the better. Eating healthy and getting regular exercise are key, but I think it’s equally as important to distress your mind and constantly reevaluate what you are doing and why you are doing it. Stress is a massive factor to an unhealthy lifestyle, so try to decrease it – wake up early, make tiny changes and build a life that you want to live”.
Olive’s Kitchen has gone from strength to strength. Beginning as a personal Instagram food diary, Olive’s loyal followers have encouraged and championed her recipes, providing her with the confidence and aspiration to enter the nutrition field professionally.
“I want to see how different dietary choices can cure illnesses, and I want to help people to find the right kind of nutrition for their lifestyles. I’m currently in the process of setting up my own website containing food, daily inspirations and motivation towards a happy, healthy, vegan lifestyle. I am very passionate about it, and when you’re passionate there are no limits”.
We hope that you enjoy Olive’s Fruiteatox Vegan Eating Plan as much as we do, but we warn you… the range of delicious recipes will leave you wanting more! Keep up-to-date with all things Olive by following her at @OlivesKitchen.