Madeleine Shaw is a super blogger and author, her nutritional advice has accumulated her a dedicated following of over 300,000 across her social media platforms. Madeleine grew up with a torturous relationship with food and her body; it was a vicious cycle of depriving and then binging that led her to being diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
Madeleine’s food philosophy now centres on enlivening the hottest, happiest and healthiest you. She prides herself on educating people and showing them that food is a powerful drug. Healthy food can be delicious, nutritious, affordable and simple to make. She believes that by keeping things simple and delicious, you never feel bored or deprived.
Madeleine revealed all to us about the power of food, her health issues and how moving to Australia changed her life forever.
During their teenage years, many young peoples diet’s consist predominantly of junk food but at 18-years-old you undertook a drastic lifestyle change. What was the driving force behind changing your relationship with food?
I was diagnosed with IBS after noticing that I was bloated all the time, but that wasn’t the only force behind my change of diet. I had dull and tired skin, felt drowsy all the time and as soon as I began eating better and educating myself about the power of food, it quickly changed and I noticed a difference almost immediately.
At just 18-years-old, you packed up and moved to the other side of the world. What inspired your move to Australia?
I actually moved to Australia to go to university. I’d always wanted to live there. It just so happened that I ended up working in an organic cafe in Bondi Beach whilst I was studying and that changed my whole outlook on food forever.
What would you say are the biggest culinary opposites between the UK and Australia?
The Aussies live and breathe health. They just have a completely different attitude to exercise and food. There are so many juice bars, there is always a healthy option on the menu, and the food is always so fresh and tasty. We are seeing more and more of this in the UK, but not nearly as much as in Australia.
You’re one of very few food bloggers that has studied nutrition, do you think that gives you an advantage?
Initially I took a course at the Integrative Institute of Nutrition, which means I’m a qualified health coach. I guess health coaching and my blog went hand in hand to begin with, and I was writing not only from the heart, but from what I had learnt. If you’re qualified in something I guess people are more likely to take what you say for fact. I’m currently studying a 3 year nutrition course at CNM in London, so I’m still learning something new every day and I love it.
Where do you get your inspiration from? How do you keep coming up with such simple yet delicious recipes?
I take inspiration from anywhere and everywhere. I’ll look at recipe books, I love reading other people’s blogs – I even take inspiration from menus in restaurants, to see how I can recreate something or put my own healthy spin on a dish.
What are your thoughts on super foods?
To me super foods are all foods. I love the more common ones like turmeric, broccoli and sprouts. I think it’s about a whole food diet rather than getting too obsessed with super foods powders.
What nutritional mistakes do you see people making the most? What advice would you give to people who want to eat healthier?
Eating too many healthy sugars like dates and honey, and nuts – they’re easy to go overboard. In terms of advice, start by changing your breakfast, ditch that sugary cereal for some eggs and avocado.
What’s your signature dish? Why is it so important to you?
It changes, but at the moment roasted veggies with lentils and salsa verde. It is delicious and colourful which is such a crowd pleaser.
Ten Questions We Ask Everyone.
What did you want to be when you were younger?
If you could offer advice to your twelve-year-old self, what would it be?
Don’t worry what others think of you, love yourself as you are and others will too.
You have 24 hours with no travel restrictions, how would you spend it?
I would go to Australia but by the time I’d get there it would be 24 hours later!
What is the most exciting thing that has happened to you this year?
The launch of my app Glow Guides, it’s an 8 week holistic transformational program – your pocket personal trainer, nutritionist and life coach. It’s an absolute dream come true.
The film you can watch over and over yet never tire of?
The song that always makes you emotional?
Kissing You in Romeo & Juliet.
If you could spend an entire day with anyone uninterrupted, who would it be?
My mum! She’s a total inspiration to me and I love spending at much time with her as I can.
It is Friday night at midnight, where are you most likely to be?
As sad as it sounds, I’ll probably be either watching Netflix at home with my boyfriend or fast asleep in bed! I don’t drink and I’m usually so tired out from a busy week, I just love to crawl into bed and sleep!
What is your biggest vice?
Chocolate! I love Ombar and I recently had a whole stash of it at home. It’s so tasty and if I have it in the house I just eat all of it so I had to give the rest away. Chocolate can be great in small quantities!
How would you like to be remembered?
The woman who makes healthy eating easy and simple.
Madeleine Shaw’s 8-week transformational programme, Glow Guides, is a pocket personal trainer, nutritionist and life coach all in an app. Available for download in iOS and android (£49.99). For more information, visit glowguides.co.uk.
Buy Madeleine Shaw’s ‘Ready Steady Glow’ here.