This month we caught up with Collette White from Tasmania, Australia.
Collette changed her family’s lives by literally cutting out the crap some years back. She has since 5 published recipe books, all recipes are gluten, dairy and preservative/additive free. She shares some tips for those wanting to live healthier lives.
Hi Collette, can you please share the story of how Cut Out The Crap started?
I was diagnosed with multiple food intolerances around 12 years ago and fell into a mini state of depression as I loved my food so much and felt there were no recipes out there at the time to cater for me and all of my intolerances. During a treatment in the Blue Mountains I had a 'break through' moment when I was inspired by these words of wisdom told to me: "In life we are all dealt obstacles; strong people see the obstacles and somehow manage to get over them. Most simply stop there. What you have to do Collette is do something with the knowledge you have gained whilst getting over your obstacle, then run with it, it will change your life."
My immediate and not so confidant answer to her was "well maybe I could write a recipe book" (!!)
I started creating recipes and with encouragement from family and friends I decided to put them all into a book "Cut out the Crap" - in July 2010 I got a first print run of 2,000 copies and they sold in only 3 months! My little adventure bloomed into a business from there. In June 2012 I released "Cut out the Crap for Kids", in September 2013 I released "Cut out the Crap with Style" and in October 2014 I released "Cut out the Crap Lunchbox Solutions". I decided to focus on those books, my online store, my large Facebook loyal Community and of course, my family, and put writing any more books on hold for a while after that.
I understand you have now published four recipe books to assist people live healthier lives. What tips would you give to someone who knows they want to change the way they live but don't know where to start?
I think this answer comes down to your personality type as I have seen people approach a new healthy lifestyle in many different ways. If you are worried, overwhelmed and confused about the changes you need to make then I would suggest being kind to yourself, don't put extra unnecessary pressure on yourself and try to implement and stick to one new thing a week. Things like drinking more water each day, eating 5 serves of vegetables a day or doing 20 minutes of exercise a day is a great place to start. Look at it like you are changing your habits, not falling into a diet or current fad. The other way I see people do it (and it is the way I did it when I decided to become additive free and refined sugar free), was all in, 100% on day 1. I cleaned out my fridge and pantry, went shopping for new food, wrote lists of what to have and dove in head first. Still, of course, be gentle with yourself! Ask for help. Get support. Don't feel you have to make these changes alone … and most of all remind yourself WHY you are making these changes.
How to you juggle four kids and a growing business? Any secrets you want to share?
I don't think there is one particular thing I do to keep 'juggling' it all but instead, loads of little things. Running a full time business and four children (Miss 14, Miss 12 and 5 /12 year old twins!) can be exhausting both physically and mentally but I am sure I cope (most days) because of the fact my body is healthy and happy and that I love what I do. Good nourishing food, lots of water, daily exercise (even if it’s a 10 minute walk), fresh air, listening to your body, Prayer, meal planning and time management are my tools! Oh, and my morning coffee! I find that time management is super important and I always ensure I make 'me' time amongst the busyness of it all. This could be a detox bath once a week or a chapter of a book before bed each night. I also try to stay off social media when I don't have to be on there as it is such a time waster and makes hours just disappear!
What are you particularly enjoying cooking for the family at the moment?
Only three months ago, my family and I moved our entire lives interstate. We moved from family and friends and comforts in NSW to the unknown and dream place of ours, Tasmania! Because of the colder weather here, I am discovering a new passion for soups and slow cooking! Plus anything with bone broth in it, my body LOVES it at the moment!
Given your intolerances and allergies what do you like to brew your Prana Chai using?
I am allergic to dairy and soy, so my milk of choice is 'rice milk' (purely because of the taste), however I am doing a GAPS program at the moment which doesn't allow rice or grains so I am testing out nut milks! So far I have tried Prana Chai with almond milk, cashew milk and macadamia milk! I loved them all. My kids ask for a Prana Chai each afternoon when they come home from school and two of them ask for cows milk (with honey added) and the other two rice milk (no honey added). They don't love nut milks, so I always make one on that for me as a cheeky way for them to not drink mine! ha ha!
How can we find out more about you?
Facebook ‘Chat’ Group: www.facebook.com/groups/155127