It was in July 2020 when my husband Peter came upstairs after having a steam and announced to me, “you’re going to study and get your certificate in Human Nutrition”! Wow, I said what a great idea. We had looked into this course at Health Academy Australia for Peter’s students so we knew where to go. Within hours we contacted the Academy and I enrolled. I was so excited. I have always had a passion for food from growing it in my various gardens in different parts of the world to preparing and of course eating it. During the time we held Health Retreats here our Food Preparation afternoon was always very popular and lots of fun. For the past 20 years, I have done all the administration in the office and I had spoken to Peter about expanding my knowledge but wasn’t sure how. This idea sounded perfect.
My interest in food started as a child. My grandfather showed me how to grow vegetables and my grandmother how to prepare them (without any machines in those days!). Both my mum and my grandmother were great cooks which led me to buy my first recipe book at the age of 14. It was the first of a series of books I bought from the Cordon Bleu cooking school and my mum left me free range of the kitchen to do whatever I wanted. We also had cooking classes at school where things like Jam Roly-Poly, Spotted Dick, Macaroni Cheese, and Shepherds Pie were made. I’ve changed a lot since then and have been vegetarian (pescatarian) for over 30 years. January 2020 I started learning about the whole food plant-based way of food preparation. The food is not only extremely healthy but it tastes fantastic. Although we now eat predominately whole food plant-based we also include our own ‘Happy Chook’ eggs and occasionally some wild caught fish and our diet has everything the body needs.
While studying for the certificate course lots of friends asked if I was enjoying it. Yes, yes, yes I was enjoying every minute of it even though sometimes I would reluctantly close my computer because I couldn’t stay awake any longer and go to bed dreaming of the digestive tract, liver, kidney, pancreas, bowels etc!!! I waited in anticipation for the comments on my assignments from my tutor and was thrilled that every one of them had comments like excellent, wonderful work, fantastic and each time would bring me tears of joy. To my surprise, my family and friends were so thrilled with what I was doing too and many said I inspired them – something I hadn’t thought of before but it was very rewarding to hear that. In the weeks leading up to my exam, I was super sensitive and my family kept a safe distance from me – one person even called me a bear saying if they came too close I would start growling – hehe. The day of my exam arrived and my brain froze after perusing through the questions I had the dreaded C.R.A.F.T. syndrome – Can’t Remember a F…. Thing! So I said to myself, you’ve got 1 1⁄2 hours, you’re going to get this girl, just focus on the questions and do what you can. With pounding heart I got into it, finished, and sent it off within the time allowed realising afterward oh I have just written down the wrong answer for one of the questions – too late nothing to be done about it now, it’s been sent. A few days later my results came through “Total Mark 76/80 = 95% !” Wow I nearly fell off my chair.
This was the beginning of a new journey for me. I was accepted as a Full Member by the IICT (International Institute of Complementary Therapists). I am now in the process of writing another book. My first book Glow with Health I co-authored with Peter back in 2000 so I’m excited about writing this new one and sharing some new information as well as practicing in the clinic as a Nutritional Food Practitioner.
So my motto is ‘I’m too busy to grow old. I’m now 70, I completed a two-year online course in one year and enjoyed every minute of it. My advice to everyone is, find your passion and do it no matter how old you are. We never stop growing and it is so rewarding to do something which makes you happy and helps others at the same time.