Holly White: ‘I’ve worked hard to curate my life and have nice people around me’

Holly White: ‘I’ve worked hard to curate my life and have nice people around me’

Plant-based chef Holly White has been vegan for seven years now. There were three key elements in Holly’s decision to make the switch – animal cruelty, her own health and the health of the planet.

“I worry about climate change a lot,” she says.

“Once you become aware of it, it’s very difficult to walk into a supermarket and see all the plastic and know that it’s polluting the sea.

“Ten years ago, I had no clue. The way I used to eat and shop was very carefree. It was easier to buy things without worrying, without knowing the impact.”

Now Holly believes we are seeing the devastation our lifestyle habits are causing and it is becoming more difficult to look away.

The 38-year-old is hoping to do her bit by encouraging more people to incorporate more plants into their life by showcasing how easy and tasty plant-based food can be.

To this end, she is launching a four-week vegan cooking and lifestyle course via Zoom in January where she will share everything she knows about living a plant-based lifestyle including meal planning, shopping, navigating social circumstances, and supplementing.

“You can live a full and rich life [as a vegan],” she says, “I still go out with my friends and I enjoy myself – I’ve just made some small changes.”

Holly White’s four-week vegan cooking and lifestyle course will begin on January 3 and run until January 24. She is also hosting ‘A Very Vegan Christmas Dinner’, a live cook-along, on December 15 (6.30pm – 8pm). For details see www.holly.ie

Plant-based chef and best-selling cookbook author, Holly White, will be hosting live online Christmas and New Year vegan cookery courses

What shape are you in?

I feel pretty healthy at the moment.

What are your healthiest eating habits?

Every day I try to have something nice and green, whether it’s a juice or smoothie and lots of plant-based proteins.

What are your guiltiest pleasures?

I can have two glasses of wine, the third one is the one I feel the next day… so that’s the guilty one.

What would keep you awake at night?

Too much caffeine and worrying about climate change.

How do you relax?

Walking in the fresh air, sea swimming. During the week I do a lot of meditation. I aim for 20 minutes a day – that might be 10 minutes in the morning or 10 minutes at night. Also, I’m trying to get back into reading a little bit more.

Who are your sporting heroes?

Fiona Oakes. She’s the fastest vegan marathon runner. I wear her trainers – it’s hard to get sneakers not made of leather. They’re amazingly comfy.

What is your favourite smell?

Fresh laundry, my mum’s kitchen and the smell of nature in summer.

When was the last time you cried?

Maybe six or eight weeks ago. I don’t cry too often. I think with meditation and journaling my emotions tend to come up quite regularly.

What traits do you least like in others?

Animal cruelty, ignorance and a lack of kindness.

What traits do you least like about yourself?

I worry quite a lot. A lack of confidence. Sometimes I don’t back myself as much as, in hindsight, I know I should.

Do you pray?

All the time. I don’t pray in the sense of sitting down and saying Hail Marys or anything like that, but I believe in a higher power and I always turn to that whenever I am overwhelmed.

What would cheer up your day?

A good chat with a loved one.

What quote inspires you most and why?

‘Live in the faith that the whole world is by my side provided I am true to the best that’s in me.’

I think we all have a best self and we know, deep do

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