An Interview with Nutritionist Jenna Zoe
Friday, 28 March 2014
What set you on your quest for a healthier life?
At age 17, I suffered from terrible candida and hormonal issues. It was detrimental to my health, yes, but it also gave me horrible acne which was so hindering. After seeing a nutritionist who prescribed a super clean diet, my skin started to clear up and all my issues re-balanced. That’s when I started to see the amazing power of food on our minds and bodies.
How important do you think nutrition is to how you look on the outside?
Eating 'beauty foods' is the most powerful thing you can do to combat premature ageing and to really get that glow. A good diet literally re-programs your cells to function like they are young and thriving. I can always tell the difference between someone who eats healthily versus someone who relies on fancy products to look good - because past a certain age, the miracle creams can only get you so far.
What are your top recommended ‘beauty foods’?
It's very common to say leafy greens like kale and spinach, and healthy fats from avocados, nuts, seeds, etc. While these foods do contribute to beautiful skin, the most powerful combination is to get a range of micronutrients from all different kinds of natural foods - so berries, squashes, sprouts and super foods are equally important. The most important thing though is not what you eat, but what you leave out; so the less junk in your diet, the better your skin is guaranteed to be.
How does your natural approach to nutrition transfer to the beauty products you use?
I'm a big believer that what you put ON your body is as important as what you put IN it. Your skin literally drinks everything you slather it with, so as a good rule of thumb I try to stick to beauty products with ingredients that I could theoretically eat. I love brands like Ilia and Oskia, which both have clean ingredients lists but still feel really luxurious. There are a few conventional products that I just can't give up, so I give myself the 90/10 rule, where a small percentage of the beauty products I use don't have to be as natural.
What top tips would you give to people who want to start introducing healthier aspects into their daily routines?
I usually tell people to make 3 small changes at a time. Making lofty goals like 'lose 15 pounds' or 'get fit' always backfire because they're unspecific and complete overhauls are overwhelming. Your 3 changes could be things like 'drink 8 glasses of water a day', 'start each morning with a green smoothie' and 'stick to one small sweet treat per day' - then once you've got those mastered, add 3 more. It's a great way to do it because you're building a solid foundation. And big changes happen a lot faster than you would expect when you try this method!
Have you ever tried Udo’s Choice Ultimate Blend Oil?
Yes, I use it on all my salads because of the amazing spectrum of oils it contains.
How do you incorporate fitness into your life?
In a good week I'll get 4-5 hours of exercise in, but that doesn't always happen. I work out to awaken my energy, which has massive knock-on effects in every other area of my life. Investing in exercise is like the gift that keeps on giving, because putting that hour in makes the other 23 hours in my day more efficient. For the last 6 months I've been to Crossfit South London and have never felt better about my physical wellbeing.
How do you relax?
I aim to carve out 30-60 minutes after the work day to do nothing - just sitting still and letting my brain wander really helps me feel more Zen. Alone-time is such an underrated tool for getting clarity, because it's only when we stop that we can have those amazing 'aha' moments.