Fitness and wellbeing coach Elly McGuinness speaks to the woman behind Little Bird Organics about what ‘organic’ really means.
In the few years Little Bird Organics and its ‘Unbakeries’ have existed, Megan May has cemented her place as one of Auckland’s most important and influential chefs. Raw organic, vegan, natural and delicious goodness is what her and her team are all about. The tantalising, mouth-watering food they bring us is also the healthiest fare you could hope for – it’s free from meat, dairy, eggs, gluten, soy and refined sugar.
Tell us a bit about your background and how Little Bird Organics was born. Little Bird Organics is a culmination of my love of food, health and wellbeing, the environment (I have a background in environmental science), and my upbringing on an organic farm. Not only is your personal health a reflection of how you feed and nourish yourself, it’s also a reflection of the health of our wider environment. We can’t escape the fact that in order to thrive we need to look after this planet, ourselves and each other.
Most of our readers will know organic is a healthy choice but may not understand the full deal behind it. Can you explain how it differs from food that is just labelled as ‘natural’?
Any product can be labelled ‘natural’. To be certified organic you must adhere to some pretty strict guidelines. Organics is much deeper than just having food without herbicides and pesticides on them. The process of growing organically is much healthier for the farmer and the rural communities they are grown in. Organics can have a positive impact on the earth as there is a focus on nourishing and replenishing the soil our food is grown in rather than depleting it. Importantly, it minimises the chemicals that make their way into our precious waterways.
What are your top healthy lifestyle tips for
Drink your greens, eat a lot of veges, develop a breathing or meditation practice and get some sleep! I also love cold showers for boosting circulation and immunity. If you have trouble getting started in the morning try swapping your coffee for a cold shower.
You’ve got a couple of cafés in Auckland called ‘Unbakeries’ and something called the ‘Squeezery’?
Our Unbakeries and Squeezery are an extension of our Little Bird Organics range, which you can get in health food stores and NW supermarkets around the country. We wanted to show people what a fresh wholefoods diet can look and taste like so we opened the cafés to showcase that. Cold-pressed juicing is an incredible way to make you feel amazing so we started our Squeezery. This supplies our stores with a range of delicious and healthy juices, nut milks and kefir drinks.
You’ve got an amazing looking wellness retreat coming up in September at the Huka Lodge in Taupo. Tell us about some of the key features of this weekend.
Food is the central part of the experience. The plant-based food we are serving is going to be incredible. Getting to work with the best local and organic ingredients with the exceptional Huka Lodge chefs is a highlight for me. People are going to be blown away at the beauty and flavours that we are creating
together. We can’t escape the fact that in order to thrive we need to look after this planet, ourselves and each other