How to find joy, make the right food choices & ultimately nourish your body, mind & soul.
Georgie Holt on a holistic approach to food, the perfect "diet" & self love.
The amazingness of the internet is most often remarked when it actually leads to the most amazing connections and friendships. As happened with the wonderful Georgie Holt, who I first met virtually and then had the pleasure to meet in real life and soon also to call her a very, very dear friend.
Georgie is a highly inspiring human being, and I keep being stunned by her knowledge with regards to food and self-care. Thus, easy-guess, I really wanted to share some of her wisdom with you. And, as a little teaser, her desserts are INSANE, and best news are yet to come: Georgie just worte an eBook, sharing some of her secret "Sweet Antidotes" with us. Believe me, luck's with us!
But for now, let's dive into the thoughts of this wonder woman and learn some highly interesting ideas about cooking, self love and recipes for a happy heart, sould and mind.
Georgie, it's a pleasure talking to you. I have been inspired from the very first moment, seeing your online content and then also meeting you in real life. Could you introduce yourself? .. Who are you? What have you been up to so far?
Thank you! At 26, it feels a little difficult to answer who I am, as I'm still figuring out the journey towards my biggest dreams in my career and personal life. But, for the past five years I have been delving deep into food and the culinary world. This has involved travelling and working in some of the most inspiring cities for me, including Berlin, Miami, New York, LA and Joshua Tree, working as a run around in kitchens at a very low level and working up to head chef in some.
I've been exploring the idea that food is not simply an act or philosophy of nourishment/nutrition, but a way of living and discovering rituals that are healing to the individual. Whether, that's eating slowly, growing your own herbs, making a spread of food for you and a loved one or getting creative with baking a dessert. For me, music, movement, and self expression have always been a part of and not seperate to the ways that we nourish ourselves and making this come alive for someone. I seek to educate all of my clients with these kinds of ideas, in an effort to help them become more playful and personal with the ways they eat.
You have an incredible knowledge about foods.
Ever since a young child I was fascinated with how foods, herbs, plants and flowers could heal us internally. It started as a fascination with everything my grandma and mum used to cook. I felt loved every time my mum slow cooked a stew for hours, or my grandma presented me and my sister with her famous meringues, battenburg or apple pies. But, I felt there has to be some deeper science to why foods had such a profound effect on our brain chemicals and overall health. When I was 6 years old my mum became an acupuncturist and herbal medicine practioner, so as I got older I started to read all of her books and became fascinated by the numerous ways we could nourish ourselves.
After university, I applied to be a PA to a skin nutritionist on Harley Street, and I got the job. I sat at a desk for a year and responded to clients emails about meal plans, meal ideas, supplement orders, recommendations, etc, while the nutritionist was in clinic. Everytime I didn't know what a herb/supplement did, I would ask the nutritionist, and she told me to use Google every time. I started to invest in a wealth of books and figured out the only way I could properly learn was by getting in the kitchen every day and exploring food at a soul level, not just a nutritional level.
What trends or struggles are you observing in peoples' or as well athletes' dietary decisions?
Well, I'm definitely always observing. People's relationships towards food and themselves always fascinates me. I think 'restriction' or 'punishment' is a word that resonates quite strongly with how I see people relating to their daily meals, nourishment and relationship towards food. The idea that someone can allow themselves something that has been so heavily researched to maybe not be (i.e. good, digestable, healthy) on the occasionable basis, for example refined sugar, gluten, high carbs, has gone out of the window for most people. I notice this inability to find a medium ground between allowing and restricting.
I notice this inability to find a medium ground between allowing and restricting.
If there is a tendency to over 'restrict' there has to be an even bigger effort on my part, as a chef, to help them fall back in love with the rituals surrounding food. The idea that food isn't just nourishment/nutrition, it's a culture, an experience. As soon as people come home to eating/laughing around a table with loved ones, making time to sit and be with themselves and the food they've made in the morning, or simply being grateful for the food they have at their fingertips, it becomes more of a love note to oneself.
What is your main belief / vision with regards to foods?
I think a vision is much more powerful than a belief. There are so many fads, diets, or recommendations out there that people have lost any sense of what inner guidance or intuition actually feels like in their own body. My hope is that chefs, healers, acupuncturists, and herbalists, can start to make food less confusing for people. That it can become something that feels so easy to recognise what feels good and what doesn't. Instead of feeling like you're constantly, 'underweight', 'overweight', 'not like him/her', you feel like yourself and that's the most comfortable place to be, full of JOY.
Instead of feeling like you're constantly, 'underweight', 'overweight', 'not like him/her', you feel like yourself and that's the most comfortable place to be, full of JOY.
What do you suggest to someone who is pretty much confused with all the diets and tips that you find all over?
Return to the core. Return to the feelings, emotions, memories you have when your mum used to cook for you when you were little (if you were lucky enough to experience this). This is where we first learn how to nourish ourselves. It's our intuitive state. A place where there is no deprivation or over eating, just enjoyment and fuel.
Do you see a correlation between foods and healing? On a purely physical but also emotional level?
There is paramount healing through many different forms. Touch, pressure, massage, energetics, movement, herbalism, breathwork, and love. Food for me has a special chime. It's something we can endlessly come home to. It's a way of feeding our emotional and physical state that truly has so much power to boost serotonin in the brain, distill hunger/blood sugar fluctuations, balance our hormones and bring a community of people together around a table. There's nothing quite like tasting a dish that has been cooked with pure intention and love by another.
Food for me has a special chime. It's something we can endlessly come home to.
What about hormonal influence? How can I, as a woman (or even man) positively influence my endocrine system? And where do I have to be careful in order not to disturb this balance? (thinking of hormonal fatigue, etc.)
We have to remember that our body functions off of a basic intake of nutrients. If we deprive ourselves of these nutrients for too long (i.e. fasting too many days of the week) our body goes into a state of fight or flight instead of the central nervous system being in a relaxed state, where our hormones are balanced. It is possible to eat and have a positive affect on blood sugar levels, energy and overall wellness, without feeling sluggish or fatigued. I think this is where people get confused. I would say the more we deprive ourselves of food, the more fatigued we generally feel.
Herbs like oat straw, blue vervain, reishi mushroom, mesima mushroom, pine pollen and ashwagandha, are all phenomenal herbs for assisting with food intake to balance the cortisol levels in the body and promote a state of rest.
Where do I get started if I feel like I am at point zero of how my diet looks like?
Experiment with new foods, greens, vegetables, fruits and creations of mother earth. Discover your cravings and try to sit with where they stem from, whether it's an emotion or physical feeling. Decide for yourself the things that truly fill you with JOY and make space for them.
You just released your first eBook. What is it about and who is it for?
The "Sweet Antidote" Cookbook was released for those in my community wanting to learn how to start making herbal tonics, elixirs and smoothies, as well as a selection of naturally sweetened treats. This arose out of my strong philosophy that we all need more sweet things in our life, and they don't have to be 'bad' for you. It makes life that little bit lighter.
If you want to order that gem of a booklet, send Georgie 14,99 British Pounds & she'll send you the eBook via your email. I am pretty very much totally sure that you won't regret your investment, even more so because you are also supporting an amazing human being in doing her work.
Where do you see yourself going with foods? Also in correlation with how the planet is developing, etc.
I see my passion for being in the kitchen being a very prevalent and long standing feeling. I've always felt comfort there and I've never felt stressed by it. Therefore, it will for sure always be a part of my career. I'd like to move away from our insistence as a society on utilising overly processed or packaged foods, as there is simply such little need to indulge in these things. I'd like to open people's eyes up to what they can create at home with such basic ingredients.
So, food is THE answer? Or how does a healthy holistic lifestyle look like in your eyes?
Quite simply, doing the work. But, doing the work with grace and ease. We can find the playfulness in each part of our lifestyle. Whether, it's movement, nutrition, or deep rest. In order to transcend a feeling of lack or needing more in our lives, we have to get honest about what makes us feel good. I think there is always a way of living naturally and holistically, however I don't believe there is a way to live 'healthy'. Healthy is a word that is described and defined by so many, without actually looking inward at what feels good for an individual person. It puts so much unnecessary pressure on our lives to be someone else's ideal of healthy. Living each day and adjusting as it comes with intuition, is what allows our body to constantly and truly heal. Patience with ourselves, the planet and the food we eat/assimilate.
Living each day and adjusting as it comes with intuition, is what allows our body to constantly and truly heal.
Anything you'd want to share?
I guess just a final reminder to never stop exploring or educating yourself on what eating naturally means to you or what makes you feel fulfilled, energised, and vibrant. When we get in the kitchen and create, we discover a means of nourishing ourselves that can't be found in a recipe book, by someone else cooking for us or with a ready prepared meal. There's nothing that compares to touching the food you will consume with your bare hands and fuelling that food with energetic love/intention. Your body needs this love.
There's nothing that compares to touching the food you will consume with your bare hands and fuelling that food with energetic love/intention. Your body needs this love.