Annie Lawless is the New York Times best selling author of the Suja Juice Solution. When she’s not blogging at her online home Blawnde, she’s working on her other baby, Suja Juice. Before Suja, Annie was in law school, but dropped out when she realised that was not her passion at all. Meet Annie…
Tell us about your journey, what sparked your passion for the health and wellness industry?
My journey began long before I ever imagined being involved in the health and wellness industry and was really a happy accident of personal health discoveries through experimentation and exploration that changed my life forever. I grew up with terrible eczema all over my body that I remedied with daily steroid creams as well as severe allergies and autoimmune issues. Through a series of testing and doctor recommendations, I found out I had a Celiac’s disease, which is a gluten intolerance. I grew up like every other kid eating sandwiches, pasta, cookies, crackers, and bagels, but I never fathomed this had anything to do with my health issues. When I was told gluten was in basically everything I ate on a daily basis, I was not only devastated, but confused. Within a week or two of removing gluten from my diet, my eczema and autoimmune issues completely disappeared and that was a huge light bulb moment for me. For the first time, I realized what you put in your body is directly correlated to how you look and feel. I was determined to turn my lack of knowledge and confusion into opportunity and possibility for feeling the best I possibly could by learning everything there was to know about nutrition and share it with other people who may be able to benefit from making some changes too.
What’s your number one wellness tip?
Remove added sugar from your diet! Sugar has been shown to be more addictive than heroin and cocaine. SUGAR! The “harmless” white stuff you can legally go buy at any store right now and which is present in nearly every packaged product in our food supply. So many people have a hard time giving up the most unhealthy foods like baked goods, soda, candy, fruit juice concentrates, cereals, and granola bars because they’re really addicted to sugar. The problem with sugar is it creates a vicious cycle of craving and bingeing because it releases chemicals in the body and brain that make you feel good temporarily, but leave you with a blood sugar crash and rampant hunger hormones that make you crave and binge again to get back to that short-lived feel good place.
What’s your one non-negotiable when it comes to your health?
I obviously never eat anything with gluten no matter what because it makes me very sick, but beyond that, I make time every day no matter what to meditate before doing anything! That time in the morning is so sacred to me and helps me be my best self every day. I’ve suffered from anxiety and Type A tendencies my whole life, and meditation has been the only thing that balances me out and helps me see things from a clear, calm perspective. After meditating, I feel like I can take on the world.
What motto do you live by?
What you think, you become. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you create.
What is your proudest achievement?
Dropping out of law school to follow my passion and trusting that it would all work out. That changed my life more than anything else I’ve ever done.
What are your goals for the future?
To always be creating things, to live on my edge and do things that scare me a little bit,
Tell us something not many people know about you?
Growing up, I was a really big tomboy. I wore No Fear tee shirts with Umbro soccer shorts and Nike Air Jordans. My hair was always pulled back in a ponytail and I liked playing softball. Now, I’m as girly as they come and I don’t think anyone would ever believe that about me.
Can you share with us one of your favourite recipes?
The Kale-ifornia Salad is perfect because it’s great any time of the day and packs so many healthy ingredients into one dish for an easy and complete meal. It also tastes better the longer it sits so you can make big batches in advance and have a super nutritious meal at your fingertips all week.
1 head kale de-stemmed
1/2 red onion diced
1 whole avocado cubed
1 1/2 tablespoons tamari
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 pint cherry tomatoes
Wash the kale and finely chop it using a good knife. Place the kale in a bowl. Add the red onion, avocado, tamari, Dijon, and garlic powder to the bowl. Using your hands, massage all of the ingredients together for 2 to 3 minutes, allowing the kale to soften and the avocado to form a creamy dressing with the tamarin and Dijon. Halve the cherry tomatoes and gently toss them into the salad.
Where can we find you?