ZENB isn't alone in its mission to promote positivity, nutrition and wellbeing. Incredible individuals across the globe are using their talents to truly inspire change and deliver difference.
In our Inspiring Insights series, we’ll be asking them to share their expertise on living a more balanced life. And this time we’re speaking to Nutritionist and yoga expert Libby Limon.
Thanks for chatting with us, Libby! Tell our readers a bit about yourself — what are your biggest passions right now?
I’m really passionate about having a healthy balanced outlook on life. I want people to able to look after their wellbeing whilst easily fitting into their everyday lives. Being healthy shouldn’t be hard or consuming. With the right knowledge and the right tools, you can have your cake and eat it.
Being healthy and mindful is clearly a big passion of yours: what are your top three tips for staying fit and healthy?
1) Understand your body’s needs by functional testing and expert knowledge
2) Move as much as you can, that doesn’t mean spending hours at the gym, but does mean not sitting all day
3) Eat as many vegetables as you can, ideally 7-10 portions per day. It is simple advice but most of us don’t manage it.
What are small changes people can make to feel almost instant benefits?
Blood sugar balance your meals by making sure they will make you feel fuller for longer and give you sustained energy. This is simply done by starting off with a protein element (fish, meat, eggs, tofu, beans, peas, pulses etc.), then adding starchy veg such as sweet potato, squash or wholegrains, and then lots of other vegetables and salad. It can transform energy levels, levelling out slumps and cravings, as well as reducing stress and sleep problems.
Take vitamin D and magnesium — these are two nutrients that even with a healthy diet can be hard to reach optimal levels. They, again, are good for energy, immunity, stress, sleep and muscle recovery.
A lot of people have turned to yoga for their home workouts at this current time. What inspired you to start practicing yoga, and what compelled you to share that interest on social media?
I started practicing yoga when I was 19 and at university, it was back in the 90s, so it was not really a thing back then. But I heard it was good for stress so decided to give it a go. I loved it, I didn’t really like exercise and had struggled with my body in my teens. It ticked all the boxes for me, it made me feel good physically and mentally. Ten years later, I trained as a teacher and now I’ve been teaching it for 10 years! I can’t believe that I have been doing it for half my life, it now just feels part of me and what I do.
Social media is a great way to share your passion and knowledge with people all around the world, that you often wouldn’t get to meet in ‘real’ life. When social distancing started, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to teach in a studio, it seemed a no-brainer to take it online. It’s been great to reconnect with many of my previous students that no longer live near me too.
What, in your view, is the best way to ‘reset’ the balance button when life gets hectic or overwhelming?
Sleep is my ‘go to’. For me, it is the one thing that makes life from being ‘cope-able’ to not. If I have a bad night, I’m a big fan of a nap and/or a very early night if needed. There is no shame in going to bed at 9 pm if your body needs it.
Even though sleep is so important, ironically it is often affected when you are stressed, so I am also a big fan of ‘yoga nidra’ — nidra means sleep. In reality it isn’t an actual sleep but is a relaxation and semi-conscious yoga technique. There are loads of examples on YouTube and music subscription platforms to access.
At ZENB we’re passionate about using the whole vegetable in our products. How do you avoid food waste when cooking? Do you have any tips for our readers?
I am a real stickler for preventing waste — something in my ‘northern genes’ I think. I try to plan my meals and shop accordingly, so I only have the ingredients I need. If there are things that are going past their best, I either freeze or cook into soups and stews, and then freeze. There are so many things that you freeze that people don’t know about, such as smoked salmon and milk. I always tell my clients the ‘freezer is your friend’ and you can make your own ready meals, so they are ready to defrost and heat when you don’t want to make a meal from scratch.
Finally, what’s coming up next for you?
I’m currently trying to work from home — like everyone! I am running donation vinyasa and hatha zoom yoga classes and everyone is welcome. Check out my Instagram @libbylimon or email me firstname.lastname@example.org to join. I also run an online clinic for my nutrition clients too, at www.libbylimon.com.