Keto diets are all the rage right now because of their supposed benefits for people who are looking for a way to lose weight. While it is true that this sort of diet can do wonders for some people, there are a multitude of misconceptions that surround what it is and how to go about it. Chef Nicole Derseweh is a vegan chef who’s looking to use her worldwide influence to inspire vegan newbies. Joining Jason Wrobel and Whitney Lauritsen, Nicole dives into what a keto diet can do for you, while also exploring its relationship with veganism and the vegan community as a whole. If you’re looking for a change in diet and lifestyle, this may be a good place to start.
Listen to the podcast here:
The Vegan Keto Journey With Chef Nicole Derseweh
I think a good place to start is that Nicole is someone Jason experienced the ayahuasca journey with that we talked about in our previous episodes.
That’s true. I cheffed that ceremony.
How many times have you done ayahuasca now?
I’ve cheffed and facilitated eight ceremonies now and I’ve participated three times. At one time, nothing happened. I didn’t have the experience, which can happen sometimes.
I did hear that from somebody else who had done ayahuasca and said they didn’t feel much. Why do you think that happens?
They say you have an internal resistance or something that, but in my case, I didn’t follow the dieta super strict because I was only planning that time to be a facilitator and to hold space for others. I hadn’t prepared my body. I didn’t cut caffeine. I didn’t cut sugar or spice. I’m wondering if chemically I wasn’t in a place to receive.
For the readers that don’t know what a dieta is, the way it’s been explained to you, what’s the purpose of it and what is it?
Essentially, it’s a diet but it’s more than that. It’s a lifestyle that you take on to prepare your body for the ceremony. The point is to completely clean out your body so it’s a clean temple and it’s more than a physical cleanout. There are dietary restrictions and things that you’ll start detoxing caffeine, sugar and spice. Also, it’s energetic and emotional detox too. You abstain from sex, masturbation, alcohol and overstimulating energetic encounters you’re supposed to Zen out. You present yourself to the medicine, a clean, fresh temple ready to receive.
A counter to that, because I assume you’ve probably seen dozens and dozens of people facilitating these ceremonies and chafing and nutrifying people, that there’s a variety of physical, energetic, emotional and spiritual responses people have. Have you seen a corollary between someone who comes in who is doing the opposite of a dieta? Perhaps they’re eating heavy animal or fried foods or they’re engaging in disruptive practices like sex addiction or listening to crazy heavy metal. I don’t know. I’m thinking of the opposite of the dieta. Have you noticed that? Is there a corollary between the types of experience someone may have if they come in like that?
With our Shaman, there are certain things that if they broke the dieta for, he will ask them to not participate. One, it can be to their own detriment. For example, specifically if they’ve cheated and had any pork products, there’s a chemical in pork that negatively reacts with the ancient medicine and so it can actually be dangerous for their health. He encourages people to be transparent and honest. That being said, the medicine is super gentle and has the ability to be a super gentle teacher. When you have not adhered to the dieta, I’ve observed that your journey can be a little bit more chaotic. The messages still come through, but it is more of an intense journey for those people. Whereas if you follow the dieta and prepare your body, you can get those same deep life messages, but in a more gentle, graceful way.
It’s a good thing none of us eat pork. We have a pig that’s a friend anyways.
Basil’s our bestie. We would never even say that word in front of him.Plant-based food is not necessarily quinoa and kale chips. It can be literally anything. Click To Tweet
The B-word never gets mentioned in the household. The B-word, the P-word, the H-word.
B is just bananas. P is plums, H is hazelnuts, which Basil is a fan of all of those snacks.
He’ll eat all those snacks if they were offered to him.
He’s such a good pig. He likes carrots. I figure his eyesight’s better than anyone’s.
He eats a lot of carrots.
His beta carotene levels are up there, the cutest little pig.
We spent the previous two talking about ayahuasca.
We’re on it and we’re probably not going to come back around to it. I want to scrape the bottom of that pudding bowl a little bit before we continue on this journey with Chef Nicole. You clearly do understand the title of this, so let’s jump in. You have done an ayahuasca ceremony three times. It’s a feminine spirit, this medicine. As part of the ceremony, there’s also the mapacho, which is the masculine spirit. What things did you experience top-level that came up in your reality that you needed to look at? What healing experiences? What things were like, “Nicole, take a look at this,” or maybe deeper revelations you hadn’t had prior to those ceremonies?
For me, one of the biggest messages was compassion. Obviously, as a vegan, you would think there’s a good level of compassion already in my soul, but a deeper level of compassion for people in my life, family experiences. One of the more profound things was this vision that I had on the medicine of being taken up into a helicopter and looking down at my life from an aerial view, but not my life right now. My entire lifeline and showing me the points in my life where I was feeling stuck or trapped, that they’re small moments in the grand scheme. To have compassion for myself in those moments of overwhelm and to adopt self-compassion in a sense of ease, knowing that it’s a moment in the grand scheme.
Also, compassion for others, showing people that maybe I had an uncomfortable relationship within my life, friends, family and stretching their timeline out. Showing me places in their past that informed the way that they behaved with me in the present and showing me that actually nothing is personal. It’s a mantra that we always say, “Don’t take anything personally.” It has very little to do with you, if nothing. How someone shows up and interacts with you has so much to do with themselves. Compassion for that and understanding human suffering.
That’s a good reminder for us right now, given the challenges that we’ve had with our book process. I find it’s interesting how life always finds a way to bring these things to your attention and it’s all about the way that you interpret it and the information that you have at the time. I find that interesting as I get older and have more experiences and learn lessons that I’m starting to interpret information differently than I used to. That idea of not taking things personally, there’s so much freedom. I don’t think I’m at a point where I don’t take things personally, but I feel it’s easier for me to understand that concept. Whereas in the past, I used to take a lot of things personally and way more extreme. Are these lessons things that you have made a lasting impression on you? In other words, you’re able to immediately deal with them better or do you have to constantly be reminding yourself of these lessons?
It’s much more at the forefront of my mind and I still have the natural knee-jerk reactions, but I’m able to comfort and coach myself through negative emotions much easier. I feel I have this added tool set now, which is making it easier for me to navigate emotionally painful situations in my life. It’s been as been such a blessing. One of the huge things that came out of my journey was complete healing with the relationship with my father, which I had been working on in traditional ways for years, going to therapy and doing different things. My first journey, I have so much compassion for my father and his childhood allowed me to write a letter to him that expressed gratitude for everything that he did right. If you were to read this letter, you would think that I had the most perfect childhood in the world, which is not true. I had a very intense childhood. I focused on everything that he tried to do and all the positive things and expressed gratitude to him.
When he received that letter, it broke his heart wide open. He felt seen and he felt so humbled and he cried and he was able to, for the first time in my adult life, take responsibility for his shortcomings. Whereas when I pointed the finger and said, “You need to be responsible for this. You did this wrong. I want an apology,” that was in a self-righteous ego unbeknownst to me. I thought I deserve those things. That made him in resistance to me and defensive. When I came to him with gratitude and expressed all these things that he was seen and acknowledged, he was able on his own to take self-inventory and make a phone call to me where he said, “This letter broke my heart open and I thank you so much for seeing me and seeing what I tried to do. I know I wasn’t a perfect father and I’m sorry and I love you and thank you so much for seeing me for how I did show up.” It was a pivot. It was a major healing for us. It’s been beautiful. Now, we get dinner on a weekly basis and it’s something that we both look forward to. If it doesn’t happen one week, we miss each other and we want to see each other. I haven’t had that cute little girl, “I miss my dad. I want to see him” since I was a little girl and I still have that. It’s like, “No, I’m having dinner with my dad tonight. I’m so excited.” That’s my Thursday night. It’s happening.
Every Thursday, you guys have dinner?
Almost. Sometimes every other Thursday because a girl’s got to date sometimes, but for the most part, yes. Almost every Thursday, we meet in Pasadena. We have a plant-based meal, which also feels so good because he’s eating plant-based with me. Every time we have our little dad’s daughter dates and we share plant-based food and we catch up on life, it’s been beautiful.
It mirrors the conversation we were having before we started, which is talking about veganism or sustainability or conscious living and how a lot of activists and people are in a motive being angry at other people for not choosing what they choose or being angry about their ignorance. What you’re describing reminds me of what we were all discussing about coming at it from a place of praise and coming at it from a place of acknowledgment and supporting people. Rather than saying, “You’re not doing this, you didn’t do this.” Whether it’s with our parents, “You weren’t a good enough mom, a good enough dad,” or “Don’t you know the damage you’re doing in the world by eating the way you eat?” There’s something to be said about how people respond to praise and acknowledgment and love versus shaming and dark, despair energy being thrown at them. Your dad responded completely differently once you acknowledged him and praised him and came from a space of love. Look at how he changed. That applies to us as activists too.
Would you ever do ayahuasca with your dad?
I would love to.
I haven’t done Ayahuasca yet. Is it something that you “do” with somebody or would you have him go do his own journey and then have your separate healing?
There’s a vulnerability of sharing that space together, whether you participate in the medicine or not over the weekend. The bonds that I’ve created by being a facilitator, showing up and serving food and putting a hand on someone’s back when they’re going through an emotional time or bringing them a tissue. They’re in such a vulnerable place that any little speck of love that you give to a person that’s in that raw open space is so appreciated and so bonding. I don’t have to necessarily “do” it with him. If I was a facilitator and holding space for him to go on his own journey, it would be incredibly bonding. If he didn’t take the medicine and came and helped me co-facilitate, even that would be so bonding because you’re in the energy of it.
I’ve seen miraculous things happen with couples specifically coming in one way with you can tell some tension and some distance and some pain and leave at the end of the weekend like newlyweds, like freshly shampooed puppies. They’re so cute and it’s beautiful. Because all these things and we get so hurt and we get so self-righteous and we hold onto and want to beat the drum of distance and we’re justified in it. Many of those things are not real in the grand scheme of things. The truth is whatever you’re angry or holding resentment about, if your loved one was all of a sudden on their death bed, all those things would dissolve and they literally don’t matter. We make them matter so much and we choose that and we choose the distance. She gives you a wakeup call and it’s like, “This is what matters. What are you guys thinking?” It’s cool.
We wrote this book together.
The Vegan Ketogenic Diet Cookbook, now available on Amazon.Our emotion is the temperature gauge for what's going on with our body. Click To Tweet
It was an interesting process. I feel like the three of us should talk about book publishing and the ups and downs of it, the pros and cons.
This was so amazing, Whitney, because in 2019, when we wrote this. One of my New Year’s resolutions was to write a book that year, to become a published author. That manifested and we never know how it’s going to manifest. It manifested through you coming to me and it was amazing. Now, you and I are published authors, which is amazing. We’re so excited to join Jason Wrobel as a published author.
I had started thinking about publishing a book that year too for the very first time. I didn’t feel that was going to be something that I wanted to do. It came into my mind and then it felt a few months later that opportunity came knocking. It’s so interesting when that happens. It was an interesting process and we’re not completely been through it. The book officially comes out on February 11, 2020. The experiences of it, I’ve been hearing through people Jason or other friends of mine talk about their publishing experiences. How was it like? Was it better and maybe even worse than what you expected?
It was so exciting. The publishing house that we went with, there was a very aggressive delivery schedule. It seemed tangible when you glanced over. It’s like, “Chapters one through three, do this week.” In the midst of it, adding on normal life, paying rent, juggling your other gigs and then also I had a move during the time, my dad had a surgery and I was in San Francisco for a week chafing a retreat. It was coming at me fastballs across the plate.
I’m honestly amazed now that the book is published. When I got a copy of the book for the first time and I saw all these recipes, it felt so different in a Word document when we submitted it than it does when you look at it. The fact that you got all that done and these are good recipes too. To be completely honest, I was like, “We did them fast. We’ll see.” I was so relieved when we made the recipes together after the book came out. This is why I wanted to work on this with you is because I trust you and I know that you’re incredibly skilled. I’d been going to your popups for a while, experiencing your food and the amount of care that you put into things. I hope that you do those popups again. I would love to do one with you. You’ve got a mermaid and unicorn popups. Can you tell the readers what foods you were serving that some of these popups because they were so imaginative?
The whole thing with the popups was to invite non-plant-based people to the table by using fun themes and showing them that plant-based food can be fun and inspiring and anything. I did one unicorn brunch was the intention. It was so popular and it was sold out. There was a waiting list. The venue asked me to make it my summer series and we ended up doing three in total. We started at a venue that only housed 30 people and ended up selling out a venue that housed 60. We had this incredible magical popsicle that most says where you drop your unicorn a popsicle into some champagne and it bubbles and changes colors. We had magical unicorn noodle salad, which is a rice noodle.
When you pour the salad dressing on, it changed color or something?
It was purple. The way that I got the purple color was boiling these rice noodles with cabbage. Everything was rainbow color, but all-natural dyes. We boiled it with purple cabbage and then it takes on a beautiful purple color. The salad dressing has lime juice in it. The acidity turns the purple into pink, and then you have this magical unicorn colored salad. We had a unicorn waffle Benedict. We partnered with Karma Baker and we had unicorn donuts and I had handmade all these unicorn horn headdresses for the photo booth. We had piñata filled with all vegan yummies and treats that were sponsored by so many great friends. It was a fun celebration, and so many people attended that event didn’t even recognize that it was plant-based. They wanted to come to a unicorn party. They found out halfway through and it opened their mind to what plant-based food is, that it’s not quinoa and kale chips. It can be anything.
The same thing is true with the recipes that you did in the book. When I saw the matcha donuts, I thought, “This is going to be good.” What is your favorite recipe from the book? What is the recipe that you’re most proud of?
The one I’m most proud of versus the one that I’m the most excited to eat.
Tell us both.
I have a kale salad in there. As you know, Whitney, through this the book writing process, the kale salad fuels my life.
Is this the tahini kale salad?
I agree. It’s such a simple recipe. It’s on page 94, kale avocado tahini salad. It takes five minutes.
This salad went into development when my mom had two back to back surgeries. The reason why she had to have the second surgery is that she was pre-osteoporosis and I was researching ways to get her calcium up. Dark, leafy greens are great, but tahini is such a great calcium builder that moms have used it actually to reverse cavities in small children. There are incredible studies and these moms have documented the journey of this kid being told that they had four cavities and this mom going on this regiment with high grade, raw tahini re-calcifies the body. A lot of people don’t know that when you have calcium from cow or dairy sources, it’s counterproductive.
It’s leeching calcium from your bones to break that down. You’re able to absorb very little and it’s negative. That’s what’s so sad. A lot of women from my mom’s generation thought they were doing the right thing by having a glass of milk every day as kids. They now have osteoporosis and they’re dealing with that and it’s sad. That was the development of this salad. Also, putting tahini in my mom’s mouth for every meal. I found a way to sneak it into everything and she’s doing great. The salad ended up being so delicious, so easy to make. I noticed that when I ate it. I felt so vital and alive. It’s not something that you could ever get bored of. It’s creamy. I fed it to kids. It’s awesome.
We had some right now.
All this food, part of me is loving the food talk and part of me right now, “It sounds so wonderful.”
That’s my favorite. The one that I’m most proud of is the one that you’ve already highlighted, the matcha donuts.
I still haven’t tried yet.
We have to make them. It’s so fun and they’re so beautiful and you get the antioxidants from the matcha, but it’s fun. I’m showing people that because there are boundaries that are put in place because you have a goal or something that it doesn’t mean that you have to miss out, that you have to suffer, that it needs to be depravity. I am all about abundance and this was so fun to me. Jason knows. He’s a long time matcha lover. Back when he and I were seeing each other, I was doing the matcha rosewater cupcakes and that was the big thing.
What do you even mean and why aren’t those in the book?
Because they weren’t keto, but I could have adapted the recipe. I’m a longtime matcha lover. As you’re flipping through the chocolate, the first time I made that was for Moby. Jason and I went to meet him at his restaurant, which led to me developing a spring menu for him. I brought that as a gift for him and he loved it. It was his favorite out of all the flavors I brought him.
I couldn’t remember if the matcha donuts were in the dessert section or the breakfast section. They’re on page 58. I love it too when you look at how simple the ingredients are. This came up on a podcast we were both on. The woman interviewing us said, “Are they easy to make?” Your recipes, for the most part, are very easy to make, which is nice too.
It was so fun for me to streamline things because as a chef, we get into the workshop. It’s more exotic ingredients and more this and lemon zest this and import me the kaffir lime leaves from Thailand. It can get crazy and that’s so fun. It was so grounding for me to reel it in, play inside the lines.Your true intuition is not going to guide you wrong. Click To Tweet
The publisher wanted us to keep them very affordable too. In fact, the meal plans all had to be under a certain amount of money per week. It’s $100 a week or something that. It’s not only to make it easy and fast but affordable, which is something I’m very passionate about. Wasn’t that part of the criticism you got with your book, Jason, was people are upset about the exotic ingredients?
That’s correct. Still, even now, the most critical Amazon reviews are like, “He uses goji berries. He uses maca. What is Ashwagandha and what is this?” I’m like, “It has optional next to it for a reason.” You can still create this chia seed pudding or this chocolate avo pudding or this breakfast parfait or whatever it is that you want. If you only have blueberries, great, use blueberries. People were all up in arms about saying that I was getting way too exotic. It brings up, first of all, there’s this thing called the internet. You can use to find ingredients also. That was always my response. It’s like, “Check this out. Here’s a great deal.” I would respond and give people options. It’s one of those big things about plant-based eating or even keto vegan is that it’s too expensive, too exotic, too time-consuming and where am I going to find everything. It seems the same concerns come up over and over again. I’m sure you both have heard the same things. Obviously, when you came out with the vegan organic plant-based on a budget, that’s something super huge for you because we hear the same resistances and criticisms come up over and over again.
I’m feeling a little bit nervous to read the reviews for the book because they’re starting to roll on in.
Why are you nervous?
Keto is very polarizing and so is veganism. We have a double whammy here for someone me who’s very sensitive. Do you feel that way at all, Nicole?
I had my own bout with interesting reviews on the internet. In the past, remember the commercials that I had done? It can’t be worse than that.
A while ago now, I was in a few Ruby Tuesday commercials and I played a mom and we were promoting the salad bar and it was exciting. The comments became so aggressive on one of them that YouTube had to ban further comments. There was a lot of negative talk about my body, which didn’t bother me being an actress for so long. I’ve done so much healing around my own feelings around it that rolled off my back like water on a duck. I remember my dad calling me one morning and I was still in bed and he was like, “Sweetie, are you okay?” I was like, “What’s going on? I’m fine. It’s Wednesday.” He’s like, “Have you been on the internet?” I was like, “No.” He’s like, “You’re not fat. It’s the way a camera works. It is a fisheye. The things towards the end, they look bigger than they are in real life.” He starts going on their thing. I was like, “What is he talking about?” Friends let me know. I got the nickname juice box. That was so intense that I’m like, “If they’re saying anything about my intellectual property, at least I feel it can’t be worse than that.” Someone called me a fat thigh load.
What does that even mean?
I don’t know. It’s amazing because as a teenager, I was so insecure about my thick thighs. This is before J.Lo was super cool and the Kardashians made curves cool. I’ve always had thick legs. I was a gymnast and a figure skater when I was a kid. I used to be so insecure about them. As an adult, I read fat thigh load.
Is that a compliment or not?
I don’t think so, but it was such a testament to my healing because I was like, “Okay.” It didn’t hurt me, but a thirteen-year-old Nicole would have fallen apart if she read that. It’s amazing. At the end of the day, the only thing that matters is that you love yourself and you’re in integrity with what your purpose is and haters are going to hate.
No matter what you do, you are both subjecting yourselves willfully let’s be honest. Whenever you’re an artist and you put anything into the world, whether it’s a podcast, the books you’ve done, Whitney, your YouTube channel or Nicole, all of the great artistic works you’ve done as an actress and chef. By being public figures, we’re putting ourselves available to criticism and praise all of the time. It’s a hard, emotional road. With this, I want to commend you both for, as Whitney said having this double whammy. It’s vegan and it’s ketogenic. On that tip specifically, you guys have received some fascinating resistance and criticism already to putting that word ketogenic. If I may, people aren’t even noticing necessarily that you’re doing it plant-based. They see the word, Keto, and they freak out. Can you both touch on that? I find it fascinating the way people have reacted so far.
I don’t know if people don’t realize. I would be shocked if people didn’t realize it was vegan and keto because vegan is the biggest word.
They see the K and it’s almost the other words disappear.
At least it’s ketogenic because when we were being interviewed, this woman didn’t even know what that word was. At least the word keto is thrown around a lot more than ketogenic. Ketogenic is the full word. It does sound a little bit more professional and all of that.
You are being subversive in the sense that in the mainstream ideology of ketogenic, most people in our society do associate it with bacon and animal fat and more animal fat. You’re spinning something completely on its head here when in most people’s minds, they’re thinking about it as a carnivorous thing.
It’s interesting to me because I want to expand people’s thought processes. The thing is keto or ketogenic is a buzz word that’s happening right now. We’ve seen many diet trends come in and out and you can piggyback some of those words. That this was very timely. It was very timely with Whitney’s experience. Whatever the word is, keto, there’s a lot of people that say that this is very similar to the old ‘90s fad, like a cleaned-up version of the ‘90s fad, which was Atkins. Which was the first time that this concept that you could get your body to burn fat and you could switch the system over and that was done unhealthy back in the day. People were eating cream cheese and bacon and dropping all this weight and having heart attacks. Ketogenic or keto is the modern take on that where you could still do it but in a cleaner way. We’re showing how you can do it with plants, literally with vegetables and whole foods.
That was the thing. Part of the uproar that we experienced thus far was when we are supposed to speak at a veg fest. Our friend had brought us into the veg fest before getting full approval. Once the rest of the people on the board of the VegFest approving things found out that it was a keto book, they got upset. I thought it’s so interesting because if you didn’t put the word keto on these recipes, people would see these recipes and think, “These are great vegan matcha donuts,” or maybe they wouldn’t even know they were vegan. If you look at the picture and see the words matcha donuts, that’s all you’re thinking about. You’re not thinking that they happened to be keto and they happen to be vegan as well.
The other thing that Nicole did so well in this book too is there are recipes that are oil-free and you’re using fat from nuts or fat from avocado. Certainly, the keto diet tends to have oil in it as an easy way to get fat or as an easy way to make the recipe tastes good or work well or be able to cook in a certain way. A good majority of these recipes could be adapted to pretty much any preference that you want. It is interesting when people get upset. In my opinion, we’re showing that it’s keto and it’s vegan. We’re trying to make it easy for you. You could go and enjoy some of the recipes because Nicole makes great dishes. The title can get people upset.
Judge the book by the cover literally. The content is great. It’s heartfelt. What I like about the book is that it’s a roadmap to Whitney and I’s journey. There’s space in front of all the recipes in front of all the chapters, where we tell our stories. We dig into our childhood and invite the full food experience to the table. We have sense memory. We have things that made us feel comforted and loved when we are a kid. We’ve pulled that into the modern era and made it plant-based and made it approachable. You can still have all the sensory and emotional responses and do it in a way that’s super conscious.
It’s like the French onion soup. Anybody that likes French onion soup is going to this recipe.
We made a bomb French onion soup.Diets that are too restrictive can make the inner child feel deprived and want to lash out. Click To Tweet
Without any bread. A lot of people tend to see things this as restrictive, but I actually view them as inclusive because it allows people to have it no matter what their dietary choices or needs are.
Almost anyone can eat out of this book, which is great.
That’s exciting too. When I started experimenting with vegan keto, I felt I didn’t know what I was going to eat. I didn’t know how to eat it. I didn’t know what I was supposed to eat. I didn’t know what foods I can make. It wasn’t until I got a different vegan keto book that I started to see how easy it could be. I was hoping to be able to do the same thing with this book. We’ll see. We still have a long way to go on this journey of being published authors.
How do you both feel about the many genres within the plant-based movement that often seem to want to say that their version of veganism or their version of a plant-based lifestyle is right? Because we have now vegan ketogenic. Probably on the polar opposite is whole food plant-based. No oil, no salt, no sugar. Somewhere in between you have raw, you have 80-10-10 or things. The thing that I often sit back and watch is how often there’s a sense of ego or righteousness within many different lifestyles. Since we’re talking about plant-based food, “No, actually oil, salt and sugar will kill you.” “No, if you eat high levels of fat and protein, it’s better for you.” How do you both feel and address a lot of the infighting and ego-based positioning that happens within the movement?
It’s ridiculous. Because at the end of the day, we shouldn’t be fighting amongst ourselves as vegans. I want to push this message forward and do something that’s good for our bodies, good for the planet, good for the animals. People have different bodies, blood types and activity levels. There is never going to be a cut, copy, paste, end-all be-all diet for everybody. Everyone needs to listen to their own body. I said to Whitney from the beginning, “More than any diet or fad, I’m a big proponent of reading to your body’s own intuition because you do have it.”
Maybe it’s been desensitized by all these processed foods, but if you clear out all the noise, your body has its own wisdom and its intuition. It will tell you. You’ll know when you eat something, if it feels good for you or if it slows you down, you’ll know. Each person, stop fighting. Let everybody be in their own lane and do what makes them feel good and get off our little self-righteous soapboxes. Encourage people to have an intimate relationship with their own body and tune in to what your body is saying to you and how your body responds and what your body needs. That wisdom’s there. I believe it is.
How do you practice that though? I hear about intuitive eating all the time. I suppose I have my own grokking of that concept. Can you give an example of what that means to intuitively eat? The process of actually reading to one’s body and then select, what does that mean for you?
On a practical application like how I’ve helped for myself, there have been times where I’ve felt emotional. Our emotion is the temperature gauge for what’s going on with our body. I’ll listen and I’ll be like, “I need some self-love.” I will intentionally go to the grocery store and I will say, “Body, what do you want?” I will walk down the aisles and I will look. I’ll be drawn to a certain color. I remember one time, the body wanted orange for whatever reason. I’ve got an orange bell pepper, I’ve got kumquats, I’ve got carrots. None of it makes sense, but there was something about my body that was craving that and I was listening to it. I allowed myself to make myself a very decadent meal out of these things that I collected. That was it. That’s for me. You can ask your body, “What do you need? What do you want?” You can also feel when you’ve done harm to your body. You have this emotional impulse. That’s the other thing about intuitive eating. Slow down. What’s going on with you emotionally when you’re making the decision to eat something? Check in. I know for me, when I get tired, overstressed, overworked, I want to go to Trejo’s and get the vegan donuts. I want to go.
That’s how I was going to say. How do you differentiate?
That’s a strong emotional impulse and you’re right. If you’re not conscious, that can happen. You’re like, “I must do my body’s intuition. It wanted me to try the peanut butter one, the chocolate one, the vanilla one and chase it down with an oat milk latte and stand on my hands. A big telltale is, “How did you feel afterwards?” Your true intuition is not going to guide you wrong. Every time I’ve fallen into that stress emotional eating and not checked in with myself and done something impulsive and then I’m done with the Trejo’s. I’m sitting there and I feel like a shell. I don’t feel good. I instantly regret it. I’m sure everyone has eaten something and then afterwards be like, “Why did I do that? I feel like I didn’t help myself out.” One thing that I try to think about myself because we all have an alive inner child is to acknowledge that inner child and pretend I’m the parent of that inner child. How would I feed my child? I am my child. What’s good for that baby?
It’s almost you have two aspects of your psyche. You have the adult side of your psyche, but then you very much have the child part of your psyche and learning how to I suppose to manage that relationship in a balanced and healthy way. I feel in some ways if we don’t understand that part of our psyche can sabotage things for us by eating poorly, eating a ton of sugar, acting out and burning bridges. I feel that there’s an opportunity to understand how to talk to and feed our inner child so that it doesn’t feel ignored and then lash out in certain ways. I feel for me, that’s been true. Working too much, overworking and ignoring my inner child’s needs. It will come out sometimes in violent or destructive ways if you don’t listen to it.
The inner child is going to have a tantrum. That’s what these diets or whatever it is, something that’s too restrictive can make the inner child feel deprived and want to lash out. That’s why you see people that are so strict. They go on a binge and they freak out. The inner child’s rebelling. They feel deprived. They’re not in a place of abundance. That’s why I want this book to have a balance. That’s why we do have donuts. We have cookie bites because I want to give you a treat. I want to give the inner child a treat, but a treat that’s going to make the child feel good, not being impulsive, feel good in the moment and now we’re having a meltdown tantrum because it’s a sugar spike and then it crashed. I want to give them the actual treat.
I think that most people are afraid of being deprived too. If you can tell them that they can have donuts, it’s like, “I can do this.” Because that first number that comes up is, “Will I won’t be able to have the things that I love? Will I won’t be able to have my vices?” You were talking about Trejo’s. To for anyone who is unfamiliar, Danny Trejo has a few establishments in LA and one of them is a donut and coffee shop. They made great vegan donuts. Think of any donut that you love and somebody saying you can’t have that and you’re attached to that emotionally. You open up a recipe book and you see that you can have a donut on this diet that you’ve chosen to try. It’s exciting. It’s relieving to say, “I don’t have to feel deprived. I can have my cake and eat it too.” Another thing that the two of you have in common, I don’t know, at this point in my life, I’ve thought about it before and I’ve had an interest in it. Right now I feel whatever is the TV show. This is something Jason has done. He had How to Live to 100 and this is something you, Nicole, continued follow in his footsteps. Jason was the published author. You became a published author. What’s going on here?
She’s the female version of me.
That’s more of a coincidence. It is interesting, this dream of having a TV show and working towards that. It’d be interesting for the two of you to talk about it. It’s like you have the before and the after.
Jason, you talked about your experience.
I’ve talked about it in a previous episode where I talked about my life. I do recall there was a massive segment. I don’t want to rehash the whole story of the genesis of How to Live to 100, but for me at that time, it was the biggest possible platform I could imagine to bring plant-based eating and compassionate food to the mainstream. This was 2012 when we got the pilot. Certainly, social media was not the juggernaut. It is now in 2020. It wasn’t even close to the juggernaut. I felt it was the biggest way to reach this message and this compassion to people is TV. I don’t think it’s that the case anymore because I believe now that with Netflix and Hulu and Amazon Prime and HBO and all these streaming platforms, that traditional TV does not have quite the same level of power and influence it did.
I think of these platforms like TV. I know what you’re saying, like the traditional network. In essence, Nicole, when the show does happen, whichever avenue it goes through, it will likely be in a streaming platform.
Which is to her advantage is what I’m saying because one of the requests that I had were because it was on broadcast TV and not streaming online, I would get emails and DMs from people saying, “I’m in Holland,” “I’m in Scandinavia,” “I’m in Tokyo.” I got so many international friends and fans saying we can’t watch it. Had we made it at that time or the technology was available or bigger to make it streaming, I believe that we would have had a way bigger global platform for that show when it was only restricted to US residents.
The good news is that now you can buy it on Amazon Prime.
It’s also on iTunes.
Also on plain, old, Amazon. You have to pay $10 or something to buy the season.
My point was during the actual broadcast of when we were rolling out episodes, at that time, I remember writing the head of Cooking Channel and be like, “Can we stream these? Can we do this?” “No, we don’t have that.” This was 2012, 2013. The timing of Nicole right now for you in pitching your concept and your personality, first of all, you have that approachable, friendly, loving, all-American vibe to you where you have the comedy, you have the knowledge, you certainly have the unbelievable culinary talent. I remember back then and it still holds true to this day. One of the biggest things they told me back then was we’ve been wanting to do this for years and years. We didn’t find a person who had the talent and the charisma and the personality to carry it.
You’re one of the few, and I mean few as in one hand, of people who I believe in our culinary style, our movement that has the personality and the chutzpah and the talent and that beautiful energy to do it. There’s a lot of great chefs, but they’re not great on camera or they can’t carry the energy. They’d rather be back in the kitchen doing their thing and out of the limelight. I think you’re in a very narrow specific niche of the personality, the talent, the energy, the comedy, but also the unbelievable culinary skills. I don’t think it’s a matter of if it’s going to happen for you, it’s only a matter of when and what the right venue and channel are for you for that. I believe that.
Thank you. I’m calling it in and claiming it for sure. It’s been amazing. This whole journey happened very miraculously. Obviously, I self-produced my own YouTube channel and worked all these odd jobs to fund that and make that happen as my platform for activism to show people that they could get in their own kitchens and they can do this. That happened for a while. That was the seedling that started these opportunities that are now coming where I’ve been recognized by some producers and they see the talent and they see the potential. Like what you said, we need that message but we need someone that can carry it. I always would hear that Jack of all trades, master of none because I have all these interests. I didn’t like that when people would say that to me, but I didn’t let it dishearten me or slow me down.
I said, “If I’m interested in something, I’m going to pursue it.” We’re seeing a marriage of all those talents coming together where the universe is preparing me for this. Because every skill that I’ve developed, class, workshop, whether it was a comedy or continue to work on my plant-based cooking or developing relationships, all of those are coming together to make this show possible. It’s huge. We’re going to have a completely plant-based show and it’s a platform for change and the planet needs it so bad right now. It needed it back in 2012 when you started it and pioneered this. Thank you, Jason, because you made the way for this to even be a concept to be possible. You are the original pioneer and so much gratitude and paved the way and now, here we are. Also, it’s an incredible time for women to be empowered and for women to be bosses too. It’s a miracle every day and then the universe literally put this in my lap and it’s like, “Let’s carry the torch forward.”
Is there anything else you can reveal about the vision or the concept without getting into too many details? Are there any spoiler alerts you can leak out without giving too much away about the vision?
I’m so lucky that I can’t actually ruin anything yet because we’ve left it pretty open. In general, the rough concept is Chef Nicole as literally a plant-based Rachel Ray. I love that and I feel that and that resonates with me. To have that dream actualized for the vegan movement would be incredible for our planet. If there could be a vegan chef that was a food star that could show up and become a household name like Rachel Ray, we’re on the right track. That would be huge for us. I love that. Other than that, it’s like they want to showcase my comedy and my passion. I’m a bit of a nerd. You guys have seen the YouTube channels and it’s like, “How is she so excited about this broccoli?” I don’t know.
Because it’s purple broccoli.
Is there purple broccoli or just purple cauliflower?
That’s what I meant.
There are purple Brussel sprouts, which are beautiful.
If all of the cruciferous pantheon, why not different colored broccoli? Why do Brussels sprouts and cauliflower get all the fun? This is very strange.
I don’t know. Broccoli has done a lot for us already. It’s one of the major cancer-fighting vegetables.
Here’s a big question because this was a point of concern and a little contention back in the day for me. Using the word, vegan, versus plant-based versus plant-powered versus plant-strong versus plant-based booty.
In 2012, plant-based wasn’t being said. You guys left the verbiage off the table completely.
In the pilot or in the season we shot, or even in the web webisodes, we never and I never used the word vegan or plant-based. It never got uttered. It was never in the promos. It was never in anything. I’m curious now if that discussion or the attendant potential concerns or energy or associations with the word, vegan, if that’s come up for you at all in conversations with the networks or the producers. I’m curious, in the mainstream conversation, where that’s at now?
The conversation is that the word, plant-based, has a more positive association than vegan. It’s a bunch of well-intentioned vegans from the ‘90s and stuff that maybe scared some people off. Vegan, that word carries this idea to some people that aren’t in this movement that it’s evangelical or that it’s judge-y or that it’s a religion that has to be followed perfectly or you’re going to get crucified by other vegans. Some people are intimidated by that word and they feel they have to participate 100% or they shouldn’t participate at all. Whereas plant-based, a lot of people are feeling that’s something that they could participate in. They don’t have to commit, sign a waiver or sign the rights of their first child.
They could calm and have a plant-based meal, and that’s what I want. I want inclusion. I want people to feel not intimidated like it’s approachable. They could start with a couple of meals a week and see how their body feels and make the adjustments as they go. I don’t want people to feel intimidated because it is intimidating. I’ve been plant-based for years now and even as a chef with a Le Cordon Bleu background, when I first set out to do this, I was like, “What am I going to eat?” I didn’t know and I’m a chef. I have to have compassion for somebody who has no cooking skills, two kids that are in elementary school running around. It’s intimidating and I want to take that factor away and invite people to participate.
It sounds uncomfortable. It does flat out. It’s almost as if our normal from the way we think or the way we live, for anybody. You sink into a diet or a lifestyle or workout routine or a relationship and it becomes your new normal. It’s so easy to forget what it’s to be in the mindset of someone who wants to make a change but is so uncomfortable or intimidated by the idea of making that change. This goes out to both of you all. I’m discussing this because there are people who have sent me messages, “I’ve been wanting to do more plant-based, I’ve been wanting to eat more vegan food, but I’m scared. I’m nervous, I’m intimidated.” For newbies, how do they dip a few toes in the water and not scare themselves away? What’s some newbie advice?
My whole YouTube channel is geared towards newbies, so it’s very one-on-one.
We were talking about this. Have we told that story?
I had a friend over. I host a vegan Thanksgiving every year and Jason was there.
I feel like I missed out.
It was a Greek Dionysian feast. It was incredible.
It keeps getting more epic every year. It has a life of its own at this point. There was a young kid that came and he’s maybe 23 and our close friend, Allison, who has The Food Heals Podcast, was there and they hit it off and were friends. This kid has no background in vegan food or anything that, but connected so much with Allison has a person that for the first time in his life, he was so curious about this and starting to ask questions he never asked. He went onto the podcast to try to catch up and learn some stuff. He has such a cute crush on Allison that he wanted to listen to all the episodes, but he said he found himself continuing to pause the podcast to Google and look stuff up because he didn’t know what adaptogens were. He felt he needed a pre-podcast to educate him, so that way he would be intelligent or have the information to digest what he now was learning. To him, as someone brand new, the information was intermediate to advance. He needed the beginner’s guide.In the conversation right now, 'plant-based' has a more positive association than 'vegan.' Click To Tweet
We forget what it’s to be new. The first time I tried this, I was going to do a raw cleanse for ten days. Raw was the thing. I was going to Jamaica for a one-year anniversary with a guy I was seeing at the time and I wanted to look smoke show. Heidi Klum or somebody had done raw cleanse. I announced to my boyfriend that that’s what I would be doing for the next ten days before we departed. He said, “I will support you.” I went to the kitchen and put whole Roma tomatoes and a whole cucumber in a bowl. I didn’t even chop it because there was something about the verbiage of raw that I thought it had to be this thing. It’s Nicole, “You could have made a salad and put lemon juice on it or olive oil.” He’s looking down at me, this kid is such a trooper, with a bowl of whole Roma tomatoes and we’re biting into these tomatoes like savages. I’m like, “I guess this is what it is.” We didn’t know. You forget those things.
It is interesting when you bring that up too is a lot of people do keto for the same reasons that you mentioned. They hear some celebrities doing keto and they’re like, “I want to feel good.” That’s another thing that I feel excited about our book is that maybe somebody will pick it up because they’re like, “I can try both things at the same time? That’s great.” We get to give them some information and some recipes that are based on whole foods. One thing I tried to stay away from as much as possible with the book was weight loss because Nicole and I both have experiences with disordered eating. We shared this in the Food Heals book that came out.
All three of us shared our personal stories and how food has helped us heal. It was interesting when I opened up that book to see that Nicole and I shared almost the same story about how learning about veganism and nutrition and all of that helped us work through our disordered eating. Anyways, I’m very sensitive to talking about weight loss because I don’t want to encourage people to do something to lose weight. Admittedly, that is the reason that I tried keto, but it ended up becoming so much more than that to me. I feel you want to be careful about it. It sounds a very similar story for you too, Nicole, is that when you got introduced to veganism, it was also to lose weight. It was also to go on this cleanse. You want to look your best.
That was years before I went vegan. I wanted to look my best for this trip to Jamaica.
That was how you dipped your toe in and that’s how you started to figure things out. A lot of people do that. Even though weight loss could be detrimental to people in some ways, it also can lead you to towards maybe even a healthier mindset and a healthier lifestyle.
That was such a nice shift too. Doing the raw way before I ever totally converted, with disordered eating it was incredible because I noticed that the raw food digested fast and then I was hungry again. It was okay because I felt good about the plan that I had. I was eating a lot, more than I’d ever eaten in my life and my body was dropping into lower weight. I had all this energy and I was so hydrated. It changed my mindset that looking good meant depravity and restriction. Instead, I was looking better and better every day and having more and more energy every day and I was eating copious amounts. If anyone who’s ever gone fully raw, especially from a standard American diet, you are a metabolic machine and it is a full-time job to keep up with your hunger. I was trying to find time in the day to make myself enough food. First time in my life where I was eating as much as I wanted and it was so fun. It was like a kid at Christmas.
Versus so many people who, myself included, back in the day before we had so much access to the internet and social media, my ways of losing weight were eating all this processed food, eating Weight Watchers frozen meals and getting shakes. I don’t know if it was the Weight Watchers shake, some shake I used to drink and the bars. Those were the things I thought I should eat. I felt deprived and they taste disgusting. I had no idea. A lot of people drink diet sodas because they don’t want the sugar. They think diet means that they’re on a diet.
Foods that are labeled as diet foods and they try to stick to the package.
They ended up feeling worse because they’re not eating enough food. They’re restricting their calories so much and it becomes this awful thing. The results are not sustainable because you’re depriving yourself. Eventually, you’re going to go back. That was something I found from the keto diet is some people do keto and deprive themselves. Some people do it and it’s very extreme. They can’t sustain it. For me, I’ve sustained a relatively low-carb diet. I’m not fully keto right now, but it led me into realizing I feel better on a low carb diet than I did in a high carb diet.
I’ve never been that into fruits. We’re talking about the raw foods. I’ve done raw food eating. All three of us have experimented. Jason was into it for a while and I’ve done the high carb diet as well also for weight loss experimenting and all of that. I have felt the best and it’s felt the most sustainable doing a low carb diet for me. Coming back around to what you were saying before, Nicole, about how everybody needs to figure out what works best for them. I feel the increased energy you’re talking about and I feel satisfied. I feel like I can eat so many great foods. Being able to eat endless amounts of avocado, coconut products and nuts. All of those things that a lot of people associate with things that you’re not supposed to have that much of. I do feel it’s changed my mentality around carbohydrates and I’ve had to be conscious about when I do eat higher carb foods.
I find myself questioning it and that’s something I have to work through mentally. I allow myself to eat whatever I feel. Coming back to the intuitive eating, if I want to eat something, a rice product, not feeling it’s bad. I don’t think any of those foods are bad. It’s that I do feel better when I don’t eat as much rice as I used to because I used to eat rice constantly. It’s about the extremes and it comes back to understanding your body and what moderation means for yourself. It is interesting as this is an ongoing experiment. This ongoing process of trying to figure out what makes you feel good mentally and physically. It’s anything else. We started this talking about healing and how it’s a journey of experimenting with a lot of different things and getting to know yourself.
That’s something that the three of us have in common. We love the process of understanding ourselves and getting in deep and pushing ourselves to different limits and shooting for the stars too. That’s something else the three of us, we’re reaching for different levels of ourselves and seeing ourselves as people that can do anything. One thing I would touch upon too, Nicole, for you is as Jason was talking about his experience with his TV show. I know that Jason and I certainly experienced this a lot and this has been something that you’ve talked with us about at least privately. Social media and the pressure to have a big social media following. I disagree with what Jason was saying earlier about there not being a lot of chefs that are good on camera. I think that the competition is increasing because of video being such a big platform.
I talk a lot about TikTok. That’s the platform I’m on the most these days consuming content. There are a lot of incredibly talented people right now. There’s talent everywhere and it’s popping up more than ever because anybody with a phone can get on TikTok and become a star overnight right now. They might not have the background that you have, Nicole, of going to chef school and having all this experience, which is a huge advantage of yours. Sadly, in my opinion, producers often get very swayed by people’s social media numbers. I’m curious, how does that feel for you? This comes up in a lot of our conversations with people that have spent years of their life honing their skills and then suddenly, they’re being compared to people that don’t have as much experience but have huge social media numbers. How do you navigate that?
It’s been interesting for me because I don’t have huge numbers now. Obviously, if I had a network show, I’d have huge numbers tomorrow because there are professionals that do it. They would put it a team on it. I’ve been okay. I’ve focused on connecting where I’m planted and cultivating a grassroots following and connecting and focusing on service and trusting that everything’s going to fall into place. I am grateful for my Cordon Bleu education. To me, that gives me the confidence to do. As far as the social media numbers, there are networks that they ask and they’ll love me and they’ll love everything. They’ll be like, “How’s your social?” It’s like, “It’s okay.” What I do have is a strong cult following and the people that do follow me are engaged and they’re invested in the story. They’ve been here for the whole journey from the beginning. They this has been a grassroots thing. I’m so grateful and I feel my following is intimate enough that I do have a connection and a relationship with them. I talk directly to them on a daily basis.
I have the relationship with my following where they’ll check in when I have a tough day and send me love or they’ll reach out for advice or encouragement. I trust that I have this quality over quantity at this point. When it grows, it grows and it’s going to be amazing. I have to trust it. There’s going to be a lot of stars that are here and maybe they will be able to cultivate some longevity over this flash of stardom that they’re getting. I do feel like I have the tools in place to have not only a career but a long career because I have the education behind me, which has given me the confidence and the intellect to speak from and the information. Yes, it’s fine and it’s entertaining. It’s right now, but I feel I’ve built a strong foundation and I have to trust the process.
That’s so important and it’s a challenging thing mentally. As I mentioned earlier, Jason and I have gone through this and many of our guests have gone through this. Somebody that feels they’re working hard and then also feels on top of that, they have to create this big online following because that’s what a lot of people feel is important. It comes up with book projects. One of our guests talked about how he wanted to have a published book but people wouldn’t accept him as an author because he didn’t have a big enough following. It’s interesting for us with this book, we have to do a certain amount of social media posts.
That’s now part of the contracts. We have to help with marketing and spread the word. I’m sure with TV shows, it’s almost in a way, maybe this is an extreme phrase, but now they see people as their built in the marketing team and their budgets can be smaller. They don’t have to have as big of a team doing all of the work that a social media star could do. They can post something on Instagram and get all these views on a video. It’s a way to shortcut it, which is too bad. What you’re saying, Nicole, it’s anything else. Anybody who shortcuts things, there’s going to be some cost for that in the future. For you, you’re in it for the long run. It’s a tortoise and the hare type of story.
Maybe the hare can look like it’s going to win the race in the beginning but eventually, there’s a certain amount of burnout that happens if you’re trying to get things done too quickly. If you’re in it for the long run and you’re pacing yourself and you’re dedicated to something, eventually you are going to get something that you’re meant to have in one way or another or that you’ve earned something. I certainly found this. There are times where I’ll get down on myself for not having the numbers that other people do. I get plenty of great opportunities that satisfy me in the ways that are most important to me. I don’t need to have all of the fancy things, all the exact experiences that some people have because of the big numbers. None of us know how long those numbers are going to last. Like with anything in life, it’s all temporary. Just because somebody has a million followers, it doesn’t mean that it’s going to stay there for very long. It can be taken away or the platforms change.
The platform’s obsolete at some point. Think about all those Vine stars and now, nobody’s on Vine.
Vine has actually made a comeback. It’s called Byte now. We’ll see what happens. Maybe Nicole will be the next big Byte star.
The big thing for me though is this is an issue of integrity in the energy you’re putting out because we know specific people that have paid for their big followings. Sure, you get the TV deal or you get specifically a big book deal with a big publisher, but if the numbers are inflated and they’re bought, then it’s going to come out in the wash at some point because the book gets released and then people don’t buy the book. The publisher was like, “You have one million followers, why isn’t anybody buying this book?” For the people that are tempted to pay for a service to inflate their numbers, you may get the deal that you want, but integrity is the cream that rises to the proverbial top in all situations. If we conduct ourselves with authenticity, integrity and play the long game, eventually we do get what is meant for us. The whole idea of competition getting thrown out. What’s meant for us, we’ll find us.
That with all my acting experience, that’s been something. I had a coach that told me in the beginning, “If a job is not yours, there’s nothing in the world you’re going to be able to do to get it. If it is for you, there’s nothing anyone can do to take it away from you.” I trust that. What’s meant for me is coming. Another thing too is to stay in your own lane. That’s a new thing. I was a swimmer growing up and literally I lost competition before by looking over to the next lane to see how far. I lost it by a fraction of a second. It was so painful. It was this girl I was trying to beat for years. She was a little bit more developed than me. Never again. It was such a painful loss to lose it by such a fraction because I was distracted. Instead of focusing literally in my own swimming lane, looking at what the competition was doing and I lost it. All you need to do is focus on you and how you’re trying to show up and serve the universe and the gift you’re trying to give and that’s it. Everything else will fall into place and you’re always going to be met with love and abundance.
It reminds me of a great quote that Dr. Michael Bernard Beckwith has and many great quotes are that if you work for the good of the universe, you will never be unemployed.
That’s so true. I started this journey as a way of giving back for the good of the planet and opportunities have shown up knocking on my doorstep because it’s in support of what we need. Rolling on up.
That’s one of your signature phrases. Thanks for rolling up here.
Thank you for having me.
We love you so much.
I love you so much. You’re signing off with some love bombs. If you guys follow my Instagram, you’ll know I always sign off with love bombs. I’m blasting you with love. Thank you for having me.
We will link to your Instagram. You can find Nicole, her videos on her Instagram, our book, The Vegan Ketogenic Diet Cookbook. You can find Jason’s book, Eaternity, Jason’s TV show. Maybe in the future, we’ll be adding Nicole’s show here. When that happens, everything is there, plus all sorts of free goodies there for you. There are ways to connect with us, Jason and Whitney. We’re so grateful for you, the dear reader. We’ll be here for another episode very soon.
- The Vegan Ketogenic Diet
- The Food Heals Podcast
- Food Heals Book
- How to Live to 100 on Cooking Channel
- Dr. Michael Bernard Beckwith
- Nicole’s YouTube Channel
- Nicole Derseweh – Instagram
About Nicole Derseweh
Nicole Derseweh is a vegan chef who comes from a long heritage of family chefs and has a culinary background from Le Cordon Bleu. She is building a worldwide conscious-media empire to inspire vegan newbies with her uplifting and entertaining YouTube channel as one of the cornerstones. You can experience her creations at high-end events and exclusive pop-up dinners in and around the Los Angeles area.
Her innovative and delicious plant-based creations consistently impress even the most skeptical critics. Her passion is to share the love, excitement, and compassion of vegan living through decadent dishes that persuade even the most ardent meat-lovers to smile. In essence, she’s the vegan love child of Rachel Ray and Elle Kemper. Follow Nicole’s journey online @Nicolederseweh on Instagram and YouTube.
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