Rowena Jayne is gorgeous.. inside and out! The ‘Real Food Yogi’ is committed to yoga, real food and, healthy living. I am so happy to connect with her in this interview to get more insight (and health tips, of course!) from this international Yoga Instructor, Raw food chef and passionate wellness advocate. Meet one of Brisbane’s most inspirational Health Hero’s – Rowena Jayne!
How did you first discover raw foods and super foods?
I went on fit for life in 1998 when I had glomerular nephritis (inflamed and bleeding kidneys) the book focuses on living foods, juices and lots of fresh raw and slightly cooked foods..I was then “formally” introduced to raw foods in 2004 when a fellow yoga teacher was a raw foodist and boy did we have some incredible dinner parties!!! I remember her telling me at one of our parties…that people would tell her “oh I could never be raw, I like food too much”….hahaha we laughed so much…if only they knew how great Raw food is and how much we loved the delicacys we were consuming, without the detrimental effects of high processed, inflammatory foods….!
Superfoods really came into play while studying nutrition and naturopathy and studying phytochemicals, though I have always been a spirulina advocate and had been dabbling in other superfoods…. Turmeric is my favourite superfood of all time!! Such a gift to our lives!!
What is your absolute number 1 health tip?
Oh gosh. Tough question… There are so many attributes to health and wellbeing and I feel there is never one answer, rather a culmination…. But I guess if you must pin me down to answer… Then I will say…start small to make changes so they are long lasting… Everyone is different and different things work for different people… My journey at this present moment is about stopping and checking in…the body is the barometer of our soul..so if we take time to stop, breathe and literally ask ourselves how we are each day.. We are more likely to hear what we need in order to maintain or improve our health…
Do you have a healthful morning ritual?
I sure do.. Though on the days I teach 6am yoga classes its a little disrupted and takes preparation the night before..
I wake up, clean my teeth, scrape my tongue and oil pull… I then drink a glass of lemon water with sea salt… Following this, I have a green juice.. If teaching yoga at 6am it stops there until I reach home… Otherwise, I then spend time chanting (a chant of nom myoho rhenge kyo – a buddhist chant that means the mystic law of cause and effect).. I chant for solutions to difficult situations and chant for the happiness of people whom I am experiencing difficulty with in my life..I then chant for the people of this world to see their incredible essence and become more self-realised so they are happy and reach their human potential.
I water my veggie garden in the morning and do some deep breathing…then my day feels ready to begin…. I take yoga in the morning or afternoon daily depending on my schedule, but it’s always a part of my routine.
To juice or blend?
I love both! Cold pressed juices are incredible to maintain high enzyme life force..but a high speed blender sure is a great device for healthy beverages, soups and more……as a traveller I can’t take both juicer and blender so opted for my vitamix.. It goes everywhere with me! Then I can juice and blend.. If I want fibre I keep the juice in tact. If I want the consistency of a juice..I strain the pulp through a nut milk bag… Not everyone has the funds initially to purchase both, so I would say go the blender as its more versatile…then work up to a juicer…
You have been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in the past, do you attribute your healthy lifestyle and eating to healing this condition?
Most definitely… I believe every action has a cause and effect… Its not bad luck or luck of the draw to have an illness… The health of our parents at the time of conception and during pregnancy contributes to our constitutional strength and of course the biggest component of health comes from our personal choices and how we treat ourselves physically, emotionally and mentally… I believe the body (and mind) has the most miraculous ability to heal or destruct, depending on how we nurture it. We each have an innate intelligence with its own natural pharmacy. I created the arthritits and now I have learnt how to uncreate it! Healthy diet and lifestyle choices facilitate the ability for the body to maintain homeostasis. We can be free of disease and symtpom free of ailments if we take care of our bodies.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an auto-immune disease, the two biggest triggers is stress and inflammation. As we know, stress of any kind leads to further inflammation and in the case of auto immune disorders the body begins attacking itself. Research shows the biggest flare ups often occur for RA sufferers during periods of high stress especially when studying.. It also shows people with this condition are most likely to return to their same way of being -i.e. pushing themselves too much, once the flare up is over! That’s my tendency, So through healthy living, yoga, meditation, more sunshine (which turns on healing genes and increases vitamin D which is a powerful immune modulator) and of course, through dietary choices that reduce stress and inflammation I am able to maintain my health and deter any further flare ups. I get fluid retention in my left calf when I am pushing too hard and my sleep becomes disturbed. Therefore, I know if I stop and rest, and increase my fresh juice intake at these times, I return to great health again.. Every one of us will have signals that will guide us…if we listen..
What is your favourite food/meal right now?
Oohh.. That’s a tough one… Juices are my favourite… I love to eat yummy food but I always feel so alive when I have juices…. And as a yoga teacher, juices are a great way to pump vitamins and minerals into the body fast without hindering my ability to practice yoga which requires an empty stomach (no food for a few hours before)…. My favourite is cucumber, apple, lemon, orange, kale spirulina and wheatgrass at the moment!!
Do you have a fav recipe you can share with us?
Yes… Hmmm which one to choose!
I have provided a Raw Chocolate Chai Fudge Recipe
Chai spiced chocolate Fudge
Makes one 9 inch tin of absolutely decadent chocolate..
1/4 cup cashew or hemp milk (if allergic to nuts)
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup liquid sweetener
1 tablespoon coconut sugar
1 cup of cacao butter, melted
1 cup of organic cacao powder
1 vanilla bean or 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 tsp cinnamon
1tsp each of cardamon, cloves & nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger powder
pinch of sea salt
Blend all ingredients to a smooth consistency in a high speed blender
Line a baking pan with greaseproof paper and brush with coconut oil. Pour chocolate into pan and freeze for 2 hrs or until set.
Rowena Jayne is a leading international Yoga Instructor, Advanced Raw Food Chef and Wellness Presenter.
She is a qualified Naturopath, Nutritionist and has studied Ayurvedic Medicine, Remedial Massage, Raw food Nutrition, Usui reiki and various other modalities.
Rowena’s passion, skills and experience has contributed to the transformation of thousands of lives across the globe through her classes, workshops, retreats, published articles, social media and contribution to a major international yoga teacher training academy, in which she worked for two years.
She has been featured on Inside Sport, The Y Magazine, Channel 9’s Sunrise, Channel 7 News, CNN, Complete Wellbeing Magazine and various other media outlets.
Rowena has an infectious, bubbly personality and is passionate about her personal mission to uplift YOU and make an outstanding contribution to the enhancement and transformation to YOUR LIFE through yoga, real food and healthy living.
You can find Rowena at www.rowenajayne.com
Be sure to sign up to receive her FREE ebook with recipes and more!