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Luise Vindahl

nutritional therapist and co-author of the ‘green kitchen stories’ blog

What makes you feel healthy?

Being in balance; having a clean, organic diet; deep breathing and plenty of water.

What do you believe are the cornerstones of a healthy, balanced diet?

Eat organic, home-cooked whole foods: real food, without any restrictions. I never count calories or put numbers on my food and I would never use terms like ‘cheat meal’ for eating something unhealthy. I eat whatever I want to without feeling bad about it. That is incredibly important.

Cauliflower Pizza green kitchen stories

Cauliflower Pizza by Green Kitchen Stories

I never count calories or put numbers on my food and I would never use terms like ‘cheat meal’ for eating something unhealthy. I eat whatever I want to without feeling bad about it. That is incredibly important.

What foods or groups of foods (if any) do you avoid? And why? 

I avoid refined gluten, such as pasta and white bread, as it gives me stomach ache and contains no nutrients at all. I don’t drink cow’s milk – I feel much better without it and lots of studies show the benefits of giving it up. I also avoid refined sugar and use raw honey, maple syrup and fresh dates as a natural sweetener instead. But again, I avoid it by choice, I don’t forbid it.

Do you find yourself eating different types of meals or food depending on the season or weather? Or are you consistent?

Yes, I cook according to the seasons. Seasonal produce contains more nutrients than imported food, it is better for the environment and also cheaper. I eat more warm food during winter and more raw food during the summer. I always feel balanced when I’m in tune with nature. But I ferment (eat sauerkraut), sprout and soak all year around.

green kitchen stories family

Luise with her partner, David Frenkiel, and their two children.

Seasonal produce contains more nutrients than imported food, it is better for the environment and also cheaper.

What do you think are the most nutritious foods and how do you fit them into your diet and life? 

Green vegetables! I add broccoli, spinach or kale to smoothies and pancake batter and oven-roast or steam Brussels sprouts. I serve a raw salad with plenty of shredded greens at every dinner and I make kale chips as a snack.

green kitchen stories

Luise with her family while on their world travels.

What is your food routine? Do you eat three conventional meals per day or do you have smaller portions throughout?

I eat three meals a day and two snacks. My blood sugar gets unstable if I miss out on meals so my snacks are really important to me. If you were to look in my handbag you would always find a cooked egg, nuts and a pepper or celery stick – they can save my day.

If you were to look in my handbag you would always find a cooked egg, nuts and a pepper or celery stick – they can save my day.

What are your favourite snacks? 

Cold-pressed juices and nuts or leftover banana pancakes from breakfast. Smoothies or chia pudding with berries are other favourites and can be made ahead. I always keep jars of smoothie, cashew milk, overnight soaked oats and chia pudding in the fridge, that way I always have a snack in the afternoon for the kids and me. Hummus, cheese and veggie sticks are some of my daughter Elsa’s favourite snacks.

Chocolate_Bean_Chili green kitchen stories

Chocolate Bean Chilli by Green Kitchen Stories

Are you a breakfast ‘lover’? If so, what is your ideal way to start the day? 

Yes! Breakfast is my favourite meal. I’m really hungry when I wake up and most nights I look forward to breakfast when I go to bed. I start the day with warm lemon water, which is a great detox and digestion tip. I love buckwheat porridge and banana pancakes; most mornings I also drink a smoothie or a juice.

I start the day with warm lemon water; a great detox and digestion tip.

What supplements do you take, if any? 

I take a multivitamin/mineral supplement and omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA as a base, then I add extra supplements when needed. When I’m breastfeeding, my body needs extra zinc, B vitamins and I also take primrose oil for hormonal balance. If I get a cold virus or the flu I take extra vitamins C and D and zinc.

What’s your exercise routine/schedule? 

I have been exercising my whole life and being active is very important to me but my exercise routine changes a lot. At the moment I like calm and strengthening exercise like swimming, reformer pilates and barre classes. Before I got pregnant I did a lot of functional training with free weights and some running.

Do you power up for exercise with specific foods – if so, what are they? 

I usually drink my workout smoothie, which is a celery and banana combo. It sounds weird but it tastes amazing and has the perfect balance of nutrients for working out. I also like beetroot juice.