An Interview with Rachel Jujnovich - Holistic Wholefood Nutritionist
Rachel is the Holistic Wholefood Nutritionist and founder of Northland Nutrition in Whangarei, the Gateway to the Bay of Islands, in the Winterless North of New Zealand.
A wellness warrior with a truly holistic approach, she’s also the designer of the carefully crafted Organic Smoothie Mixes Dr Green and Ca-POW! (That we have online).
Rach has an incredible wealth of knowledge and works with a wide variety of clients ranging from Elite Performance Athlete to Cancer patients and everything in between. She’s also a Mum so understands the demands of feeding growing bods.
We caught up with her to get a better insight to her philosophy on what it means to be in good health. Read on!
What's your philosophy when it comes to wellness?
90/10. 90% of your life is routine so make a healthy one, the other 10% BLOW OUT and enjoy it!!!
How did you make the transition from clinical nutritionist to holistic wholefoods nutritionist?
I studied Nutrition in Otago where I did a Bachelor of Consumer and Applied Science majoring in Human Nutrition, a very mainstream course where I learnt about Vitamins and Minerals and diseases related to deficiencies. I learnt that 6 servings of carbohydrates per day was necessary for any given adult. Carbohydrate being defined in this course as bread, rice, potato white starchy foods which contain little nutrient benefit to the body. The staple recommended diet being Carbohydrate, Meat and Vegetables/Fats. This was extremely uninspiring and only led me to a job where I was totally discouraged because I knew what I was telling people wasn't the solution to optimal health. When you look at what nutritionists are taught at university and then look at the state of health in NZ, it is clear what is being taught and what is generally being promoted as healthy by the government is not a great standard of health…the proof is in the pudding right, just look at the health stats. So I quit that job, and did a full 360 and studied something that inspired me and brought me alive again - fashion design.
After a while of surviving on pies at morning tea, risotto for lunch, avoiding fruit because of the sugar (?!!!) and having a coke (?!!) or coffee to fuel my working day I burnt out. I moved home, my parents were on their own health journey at the time and not doing so great.
One day I went for a walk, I was so frustrated, I was so exhausted and depressed, I said "God what the hell is wrong with me", this led me to call a friend who suggested I need CoQ10 and perhaps had a mitochondrial energy producing issue. So I took some CoQ10, I then visited an absolutely amazing healer, Jan Inger, she introduced me to an Adrenal vitamin program and said I was severely adrenal fatigued, she said you will be a different person in 6 months, it took 5 days! I had energy. I then met a woman in Whangarei called Edith who was beginning to help my parents out and they were doing awesome on her advice. Edith introduced me to juicing vegetables, doing coffee enemas and eating plant based foods. Edith was a staunch advocate for cutting toxins from ones diet, cleansing and filling the body with goodness that renews and replenishes your cells. I was re-inspired to start up my own practice and with the degree I gained from Otago this was easy... and there began Northland Nutrition - whole food plant based, holistic health.
What's a typical day on your plate/bowl/glass?
- 2x 350ml glass of lemon in warm water
- 350ml Green Juice most days
- The CaPOW smoothie pack or the Dr. Green smoothie pack that I sell E.g. A Cacao, Maqui, Maca, seeds, Berry and Banana smoothie with Hemp seed or Pea protein and Hemp seed oil in it or a Spirulina smoothie with seeds, hemp seed oil and protein in it. (Vegan)
- Turmeric Toast with Avo on top
- Either a Dahl with purple rice, a yellow curry or a purple rice bowl with pickled ginger, cucumber, Kim chi, mushrooms, seaweed. on a lazy day I might have some more smashed avo with micro greens on top. Green mesclun greens.
- Some dark chocolate, medjool dates, or something not clean like Whittaker’s Salted caramel chocolate
- Dinner can be anything Vegan, repeat of lunch or baked potatoes with cashew sour cream, an Indian dish, a throw together of vegetables, kumara chips
- After dinner occasionally we have some little island cream or fruit and coconut yoghurt or something like kettle corn, chocolate or other sweet food that I probably shouldn’t have.
What advice would you give to people starting out on their health journey?
Start your day like I do, lemon water, green juice and smoothie and you'll be amazed at how your digestion improves. Cleanse!!! Liver flush (another topic) and get colonics done. We are all so full of shit, get rid of it.
What do you feed your daughter? Walk us through a typical day.
Florence is gluten, dairy, rice, tomato and corn intolerant – she can have these things sometimes but not as a staple. Basically Florence is a 90% vegan paleo child, which for some parents this would be a nightmare but because of where I have come to on my health journey I don't find it challenging to deal with at all.
- Florence demands an apple and smoothie on waking (same smoothie as our one - I make 3x smoothies before bed all the same so we have them ready in the morning).
- Turmeric bread with avo and one piece with raw almond butter
- Mandarins or other seasonal fruit
Lunch: Dahl and quinoa or whatever I am having (we swap out rice for quinoa with her most the time)
Snacks: More fruit, hummus with cucumber, carrots and raw broccoli to dip, dried fruit, seaweed crackers, another smoothie, 1/2 an avocado
Dinner: Kumara chips, carrots and hummus, kumara nachos, beans and quinoa, dahl, curry, sometimes some meat off her Dad’s plate which he has a couple of times a week ...pretty much what ever we are having for dinner.
When it comes to baby food and what to feed infants, there's a plethora of information out there. What advice would you give to new Mummies wanting to give their baby the best start in life when starting solids? (Or in general).
I think just keep it really plain and simple, don't stress about feeding them tonnes of different foods early on like I did, water everything down, avocado is amazing, kumara, fruit (don't be afraid of the sugar in fruit like I was), avoid beans and lentils early on. Keep it simple and organic where possible. Let them lead the eating once they are at an appropriate age. Chewing on carrots is great for their teeth too.
What advice do you have for mum's with picky eaters?
Eat it or starve. Haha
......or just give them lots of choice on the plate....a little bit of lots of different vegetables. Introduce the good stuff early and don't give them a choice to eat processed crap, this way they won't know any different.
What is your favourite area of health?
That's a hard one, there are so many, I'd have to say cleansing (eg. coffee enemas, the Organic Olivia Parasite Cleanse, colonics and liver flushing) and juicing vegetables are my top 2... these things are key to VITALITY. Cleansing and ingesting pure easily absorbable nutrients.
What's the most unusual thing you've done for your health?
Put coffee up my bum.
Tell us about your latest health freak find...
WATER!!!!.... so we are 60% water and the standard water that comes out of our taps contains toxins such as heavy metals, chlorine, hormones, parasites, contaminants, so 60% of the cells in our body have this stuff floating around in them!!! Purify your water!! I am about to have a four stage purifying system put on the ENTIRE house. Reason being... we shower in the toxins and bath in the toxins too... it absorbs topically, it is poisoning us in our shower and in what we drink....and we wonder why cancer is so prevalent wake up mofos and purify.
Also alkalising your water is so key, luckily I have just inherited an amazing alkalising machine for my bench top, so all the water we drink with be alkaline, disease cannot survive in an alkaline environment oh and the vitality this gives you is next level, you can feel the energy increase drinking alkaline water. 60% of my body is going to be pumping with vitality due to good water!
Your smoothie packs are amazing - what was the inspo behind these?
I found myself recommending my clients buy smoothie ingredients like cacao, maqui, maca, seeds, hemp or pea protein and spirulina. To buy everything it would cost over $300 ... so I decided to purchase bulk at wholesale and sell packs containing all the ingredients in them so that clients didn't have to go out and buy it all separately... they can just throw a few TBS of the Dr. Green or the CaPOW mix in their smoothie and they’re away.. it makes life so much easier and I love them myself!!
Who do you recommend them for?
Everyone, young and old. These will boost your nutrient intake and energy no end! Not to mention the healing properties of the ingredients, I have had people say to me, this skin issue has gone, or this body problem has stopped... put the nutrients in and the body will HEAL. Everything is pre-digested in a smoothie so it frees up the enzymes in your gut to heal and nourish taking the digestive burden away from your digestive tract.
What other areas of health do you dabble in?
- Love a bit of Kayla at home exercise. (ED: Kayla Itsines BBG)
- Kettle bells are great too, best trainers around are at Strength and Soul - Porowini Ave Whangarei... literally amazing.
- I see Dale Speedy on a regular basis for flinch lock release.
- Bob Sturges Accupuncture - haven't been for a while but keen to get back there.
- Sacral Cranial Therapy, a must for babies and Tish Rogers is the best I've come across. Think she'd be hard to beat actually, incredible healer.
- Homeopathy....the Queen is treated this way over conventional treatment..so why not?!!! But actually homeopathy has changed my life and meant my daughter has never had to have antibiotics..or any drug for that matter. I also immunise her with Homeopathy. It is called Homeoprophalaxis...it’s amazing and works. We haven't been sick this year... bar 5 spews Florence did the other week which we were told was a detox haha... she thought it was so exciting being sick and spewing, a novelty!
What's your favourite?
I think it'd have to be Homeopathy and HOMEOPROPHALAXIS.. Research before you vaccinate conventionally, there is a healthier way with zero risk!! Don’t be scare mongered into vaccinating, you do have a choice.
What's your approach to self care?
Every few weeks I hit up the spa. It calms me, forces me to lie down and stop which is key. If I could I'd have a massage a week though (with Tanya from Strength and Soul alternating with Kiri Newman from Dip Road Environmental health Clinic – both have magic hands).
If you had to sum up, in one sentence, your approach to VITALITY - what is it?
Early to bed, eat plants, drink pure water, move, stop and breath!