15 Feb Health Hero interview: Liz Earle MBE
A global brand pioneer, Liz co-founded (but is no longer connected to) the multi-award-winning Liz Earle Beauty Co., before moving on to launch Liz Earle Wellbeing. She’s the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Liz Earle Wellbeing magazine (published internationally by Hearst), founder of Liz Earle Fair and Fine, an award-winning range of Fairtrade gold botanical jewellery, and hosts the popular Wellness with Liz Earle weekly podcast.
I’ve followed Liz’s work ever since I first read one of her books as a teenager, so I was delighted to have the opportunity to pick her brains here! Read on to discover Liz’s inspirations, her favourite food, and why she’s experimenting with intermittent fasting…
How would you describe your job?
In a nutshell, my job involves overseeing the content of Liz Earle Wellbeing—recipe-testing, interviewing guests for my Wellness with Liz Earle podcast series and filming videos for our website.
What inspired you to work in this area?
I was inspired as a child by my gardening-aficionado father. He taught me how to grow seasonal fruit and veg that are good to eat, as well as therapeutic plants that are good for our skin and bodies.
What does your typical day look like?
As Editor-in-Chief of Liz Earle Wellbeing magazine, no two days are the same. When I’m at the Wellbeing Studios, I could be checking page proofs for the next issue, recipe testing, shooting stills and interviewing guests for my Wellness with Liz Earle podcast series.
We often have fascinating people from the world of wellbeing drop by—recent guests have included Dale Pinnock the Medicinal Chef, Great British Bake Off winner Candice Brown, bestselling author Kathy Lette and serial beauty entrepreneur Marcia Kilgore.
What does health mean to you?
Happiness and wellbeing. Our mantra at Liz Earle Wellbeing is: ‘Feel good, look good and do some good along the way.’
What do you think are the biggest misperceptions about health today?
I’ve been writing the ‘you are what you eat’ message for more than 30 years. I’m still writing about it today in my magazine, but actually it’s more than that. It’s ‘what we eat has eaten’ that really matters.
Provenance and traceability of our food is paramount—there’s a world of difference between a processed meat pie and a plain, grass-fed beef steak!
What’s your favourite thing to eat?
Food has tremendous power to help and heal our changing bodies, especially in later life when we rely on greater levels of nutrition to sustain us. The research I carried out for my latest book, The Good Menopause Guide, really reinforced this message.
“Food has tremendous power to help and heal our changing bodies, especially in later life”
I was particularly impressed by the importance of phytoestrogens. These are oestrogen-like compounds that occur naturally in the plant kingdom. Not only are phytoestrogens tasty and nutritious, but they’re also fantastically nourishing—great for mid-life wellbeing.
I’ve now developed a regular phytoestrogen habit! Baked sweet potato burgers made with kidney beans and chickpeas, menopause muffins and a tea loaf are now firm favourites.
If you could give just one piece of advice concerning food, what would it be and why?
I’m a great believer in feel-good food, so I try to embrace seasonal, local, organic produce as the mainstay of my meals. My advice would be always aim for lots of fresh veg and, wherever possible, go local and organic!
Whom do you look up to, and why?
My eldest daughter, Lily (also my Head of Digital), who continually inspires me with her goodness, charm and sense of fun. She keeps me light-hearted.
Tell us something about you that people wouldn’t expect.
I’m currently experimenting with intermittent fasting! I’m finding that a 12-hour break (or longer) between my last meal and first meal does actually make me feel healthier and more energised.
I now start my day with a mid-morning glass of kefir—a live super-yoghurt drink packed with powerfully beneficial probiotics. I find this gives me a real boost for the day ahead and I believe it’s made a real difference to my overall wellbeing
Aside from good health, friends and family, what do you cherish in your life?
I live on a farm in the glorious West Country so I really enjoy the chance to make the most of family time outdoors. I love picnics, farm walks, foraging in the hedgerows—very simple, yet very special, family times that make for happy memories.
Read more about Liz and her approach to wellness at Liz Earle Wellbeing.