Like many young women, Jessica Sepel, spent her teenage years and early 20s struggling with negative body image. In an inspiring career move, Jessica took that negativity and turned it into a journey towards wellness, becoming a top Health Blogger, Nutritionist, Wellness Coach and Author of the JS Detox Plan.
Image via pinterest
RESCU: Tell us a little about what you do.
Jessica Sepel: I’m a qualified Sydney nutritionist, health blogger, and wellness coach. I believe that the path to great health starts with good nutrition and positive lifestyle changes.
Along with offering nutritional advice, I guide people to create healthy lifestyle habits and achieve physical and psychological balance through my blog.
RESCU: What made you want to start a career as a nutritionist and wellness coach? Was there an ‘aha’ moment where you knew this was the right path for you, and that it would really work as a viable business?
Jessica Sepel: I struggled with my own body image for most of my teenage years and early 20s. Like many girls, I tortured myself to the point where food was the enemy and my body was a burden. My relationship with my body was turbulent.
Then something clicked. I realised that hating on my body was affecting everything in my life, so I committed myself to understanding what nutrition was all about. When I started to learn how the body actually works, my mentality shifted. I viewed food as a source of nourishment, not the enemy. I ate in a way that healed my body.
RESCU: What credentials do you have and what sort of courses/credentials would you recommend budding health coaches or nutritionists look at?
Jessica Sepel: The health and wellness world is fascinating, and I don’t think I’ll ever stop learning. As for my current qualifications, I have a Bachelor of Health Science, specialising in Nutritional Medicine at a private college.
RESCU: We know you’re well-travelled — have your travels changed the way you conduct yourself in business?
Jessica Sepel: Everything from the spices of India and the teas of Istanbul to the spirituality of Gaia (Byron Bay), the importance of organic food from Gwinganna (Queensland), and the rhythm of South Africa, the country where I was born have truly inspired my sense of what it means to live a wholesome life. Travelling has enabled me to connect and network with health mentors across the globe that has truly had a profound influence on my nutritional knowledge. Travelling has also allowed me to discover how health is practiced amongst different cultures- this has taught me so much.
RESCU: What does the average day in the life of Jessica Sepel look like?
Jessica Sepel: 6:30am wake up to warm lemon water and a quite meditation session.
Hopefully I can squeeze in a quick workout and my 1/day coffee at my favourite local coffee shop.
Time for a wholesome breakfast – usually eggs or a delicious nutrition packed smoothie.
My mornings are either in clinic consulting with clients and having meetings with various health companies alongside my PR team.
Other mornings are used to respond to emails and update the blog.
Always time for a wholesome lunch! Important.
Afternoons are usually responding to more emails and scheduling blog posts for the next day/
I try and switch off all technology by 7-8pm.
I then move into the kitchen and get super excited about creating a nutritious dinner for my family.
Epsom salt bath, herbal tea, 8 hour sleep.
RESCU: Running your own business can be incredibly demanding — how do you achieve a work/life balance?
Jessica Sepel: I have to set some boundaries for myself. I ensure I have a delicious morning routine described above without having checked my phone/emails (my demands!) – I only switch on my technology after my routine. I believe looking at your phone first thing in the morning (which most people do) is incredibly stressful for the mind and body. This is not a healthy picture.
I usually switch my phone on airplane mode for 1-2 hours during the day.
And a strict rule of technology off by 8pm (most nights!!) for a dinner Instagram. But computer usually goes away around 5-6pm.
I make sure to socialize on the weekends and ignore all work/blog demands.
I have learnt to delegate my work. Finding other professionals to take over some demands is essential.
RESCU: What are three of the biggest career highlights to date?
1. A feature in VOGUE Australia
2. Taken on a contract to be an ambassador for an incredible skin care company. This is exciting.
3. Releasing my first ever nutrition plan, The JSHealth Detox Plan
RESCU: Anything you wish you did differently?
Jessica Sepel: Perhaps I wish I wasn’t so addicted to social media. Ha! This is why I have decided to implement social media free Saturday and or Sundays.
RESCU: Can you share three pieces of advice for anyone looking to start their own business?
1. Be honest, real, and genuine. People love authenticity. Be honest about your own journey. Being real means being relatable and there are so many people out there who need you and will learn from your unique journey and benefit from it.
2. Don’t be afraid. Go for it. The world needs you. We underestimate the power of our voices and the beautiful ways we can help one another. The human connection is so powerful.
3. Trust in the universe- it is on your side! Believe you are worthy of success. Because you are!
RESCU: And we have to ask — what does your day on a plate look like?
I wake up to a warm lemon water to fire up digestion and detoxify my body after a good night’s sleep.
My 8:00 breakfast is usually a power protein smoothie topped with mixed nuts and seeds, homemade granola with organic Greek yoghurt, gluten-free oats, or 2 eggs – boiled or scrambled with steamed greens and avocado.
Mid-morning is green juice time, typically kale, spinach, celery, cucumber, lemon and ginger. I often add a handful of raw walnuts or raw veggies with nut butter or hummus.
By 1:00 my belly is ready for lunch – I usually have a dark, leafy green salad (packed with broccoli, kale and spinach) with a portion of protein (fish, chicken, lean grass-fed meat or beans) with a complex gluten-free carbohydrate (quinoa, brown rice or sweet potato). I also include a good fat like avocado, hummus, or a sprinkle of mixed seeds. My favourite salad dressing is a combination of olive oil, tahini, lemon juice, miso paste and Dijon mustard – fats are important at lunchtime to keep you feeling satisfied.
It’s important for me to have a snack around 4:00 to keep my blood sugar stable until dinner. I love a cup of herbal tea with a quarter cup of raw nuts, or perhaps 2 brown rice cakes with tahini or a homemade protein shake.
I try to have dinner as early as possible, so I typically eat at 7:00. One of my favourite dinners is herb and almond crusted snapper or salmon with cauliflower mash and steamed broccoli and green beans.
And I make room for a treat! I always have a cup of chai tea, but If I feel like something sweet I’ll have dessert at about 9:00. Enjoying a couple squares of quality dark chocolate, 2 dates with almond butter, or a homemade cacao ball is a great way to end the day.
Feature image via pinterest