Iron Group CEO shares why Nurture You is essential
Why Co-Creating NurtureYou is Vital to me.
Nutrition and Health is at the core of long-term success and happiness
I have lived in many ways, a privileged life.
I was born with a lot of big ideas and a lot of energy to execute them.
I was successful in my career from my very early twenties.
I made money, quickly and easily.
I had a lot of freedom to define my path in life.
And I have almost always enjoyed great health.
As a child, I was never sick.
I loved sports, dance and was always super active.
I was born skinny and small, but as a child, I was a real tomboy, obsessed with strength and building cabins in the woods. I dreamed of beating the boys and girls in my class at arm wrestle.
I was lucky: I grew tall and strong through exercise and hyperactivity.
I have a metabolism that eats through food and a body that constantly wants water.
I have never worried about my weight. I have always been a good eater: I loved vegetables, fresh fruit, nuts and seeds from the age of 7. My favourite Easter treat was fresh asparagus with Hollandaise sauce rather than chocolate eggs. As an adult, I developed a passion for fine food and cooking.
It’s fair to say I grew up seeing my body as the ideal partner to my brain and a source of fun and pleasure. That is not the case for so many women.
In my early twenties, I had very little empathy for my friends on yoyo diets, low energy cycles and recurring illnesses. I did not understand their problems. I am sure I offended many by just suggesting they go for a run or stop eating fatty foods.
I never needed much sleep and I can do marathons of work and play and still have energy.
Or so I though… At 26 I discovered illness.
I was a consultant in London, working 16 hour days, travelling non-stop. I stopped exercising, sleeping and eating. I lived on coffee and midnight sushi at the office. My body did not accept this new regime. It just shut down: I got the worse stomach ulcer and for 6 months I was intolerant to everything. I could not drink coffee or wine (2 passions of mine). I could not have any spices, not even salt and pepper. I could not even digest tomatoes and salads. And any desserts simply burned my stomach and the doctors could not do a thing about it. I had punched holes across all my stomach lining!
I was absolutely miserable, incapable of working effectively and my brain was mush all the time.
I was forced to take a radical look at my life.
I discovered Yoga, meditation and Chinese medicine. I started realising the importance of regular meals and superfoods. I discovered the power of simple things like lemon and hot water in the morning. In 12 months, I did not just rebuild my health. I discovered a new lifestyle where respect for oneself had to be front and centre and never take a back seat because of a job. I started hearing my body and understanding its needs. I was truly in sync with my body. I felt great and extremely powerful. It’s not surprising that I started my first business venture during that period.
I won’t pretend I never relapsed into bad workaholic habits. But I changed radically that year.
Everybody should wake up feeling great in the morning: body and mind. Why do we settle for anything else? I have seen so many women (and men), colleagues and friends, disrespect their bodies in favour of work or other duties or simply out of lack of education or simply lack awareness and connection with their bodies. I have seen so many women, strong women, struggle with body issues and depression and insecurities.
That’s why Nurture You is so important to me.
I want to bring to life a brand that is not focussed on dieting and fitting into pre-conceived and unrealistic body images imposed by society. I want to build a positive brand focussed on long-term well-being, food awareness and education and most importantly happiness. I want to bring together a community of real, intelligent women with all their faults and insecurities, hopes and aspirations, who can share a better way of enjoying food and life. I want to build a brand focussed on celebrating food, healthy choices, exercise and passions. I want to empower women to be successful.
I was lucky to share these aspirations with one of my best friends and NY super coach, Safia Morsly-Fikai. She has gone to hell and back with her body image and her relationship with food and wellness. She is stronger than ever and one of the most empathetic women I know.
Together with our community of strong passionate women, we will build a new vision of health and happiness.
Let’s be happy and successful!
by Anne de Kerckhove