From concocting secret juice recipes in her garden as a little girl, to nutritionist and juicing expert, healthy living runs in Leah Hunt ‘s veins.
After years of studying design and working to the crazy deadlines of the fashion industry, Leah is now living her dream with Pressed Juices, combining her passion for nutrition and wholefoods with her creative talents to come up with new and delicious juice combinations.
Leah lives to empower people with the knowledge to make healthy choices and form life changing habits, so it only made sense that Leah is our Delicious Woman of Spring Cleanse September.
Read on to find Leah’s top tips on juicing, food, life, beauty and how she came to live the life she loves.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you came from design school to Pressed Juices Nutritionist?
I have always really enjoyed eating fresh, healthy wholefood but never considered a career in the health industry until quite recently. At school I excelled at art and design, so naturally I gravitated towards further studies in this field. I received an art scholarship upon graduation and enrolled in a visual communication degree.
Was there an ‘uh-huh’ moment for you? Why did you make the change?
There wasn’t necessarily a moment where I suddenly decided to change my career path… it was just a feeling of discontent that grew over time. After two years at university I had lost passion for what I was doing and in the back of my mind I was always thinking “what am I doing with my time that is important?”
I guess I wanted to feel like I was making a positive contribution to the world, however small. So I took some time off and eventually decided to study natural medicine. Learning how to heal myself and others with nutrition was not only fascinating but gave me a sense of purpose. After graduating with a bachelor of health science in 2008, I practiced nutritional medicine for a number of years before taking on my role at Pressed Juices. Now I feel very fortunate to reach thousands of Australians with a positive message of enjoying a healthy life.
What is a typical day for you?
My day usually starts at 5:30am with a hot cup of herbal tea. The first thing I do when I begin work at 7am is check my emails and write a to-do list.
I spend much of my time between doing nutrition work in my office and assisting customers with health enquiries or planning juice cleanses. Other days I am in the kitchen creating and trialling juice recipes or out attending community events. When I get home I take my dogs for a long walk which helps me unwind before preparing dinner and getting organised for the following day.
How do you keep a work/life balance?
I’m still working on this! I’m so passionate about what I do that sometimes I bring my work home with me. When I get a great idea for a new juice I will spend my weekend in the kitchen playing around with different recipes.
I’m slowly getting into a better routine and switching off technology so that I can unwind of an evening. Getting caught up in a good book is the best way to stop my mind getting caught up in work. Cooking and sharing delicious wholesome food with friends and family is my favourite way to spend my downtime.
What is your daily skincare/beauty routine?
For me, the worst thing I can do for my skin is to over wash it. After showering I tone with pure witch hazel, apply an organic hydrating serum followed by a nourishing moisturiser. Then I apply some organic mineral makeup and pawpaw & honey lip balm.
At night I use a simple oil cleansing method to remove my makeup which leaves my skin soft and supple, without stripping the natural oils.
How do you nourish yourself from the inside and out?
I feed my body with nutrient dense wholefoods and of course green juices and smoothies. I prefer to exercise outside in the fresh air and sunshine, getting a daily dose of vitamin D is so important for my mood as well as my immune system.
What is your best-kept beauty secret?
I guess it’s just plenty of good fats! Both applied topically to my skin, in the form of organic coconut or jojoba oil, and in my food – more coconut oil, nuts, seeds, fish and biodynamic butter.
What is your food/diet philosophy?
I’m all about enjoying delicious seasonal produce; fresh, local, sustainable and organic where possible. I follow a lot of paleo principles; I don’t eat wheat and rarely consume grains but I don’t eat red meat. I focus on anti-inflammatory foods, lots of vegetables, a little fruit, plenty of good fats, wild caught fish and biodynamic eggs. I usually find a way to squeeze in a little bit of chocolate!
Describe your day on a plate for us:
Breakfast is usually eggs with veggies. If I don’t have time to cook in the morning I will have a green smoothie at work or pack a little jar of yoghurt with some chopped nuts, shaved coconut, cinnamon and fresh berries.
Lunch is usually leftovers. If we’ve cooked a roast then I will turn it into a salad by adding some fresh spinach with roasted root veggies, green beans and organic chicken.
Dinner is usually steamed veggies or salad in summer with protein; fish, chicken, legumes or eggs. In winter I tend to eat a lot more soups and stews.
Snacks are usually a handful of nuts and a green juice or veggie sticks with hummus
What are your top 3 can’t live without foods and why?
1. Citrus fruit, especially lemon or lime, because it’s just so versatile. I use it in salad dressings, healthy desserts and juices.
2. Pink Himalayan salt. It is mineral rich and you only need a small amount to enhance the flavour of a meal.
3. Fresh herbs. They add a whole new dimension of flavour to a dish and have some lovely therapeutic benefits.
What is your life motto or mantra?
Be kind. To myself, to others and to the planet.
What is the best advice you’ve ever been given?
If you can’t change something, change the way you think about it.
What’s next for you?
Summer juices! We recently released our new spring flavours at Pressed Juices so I am now in the planning and development stage for our summer range. This is the best part of my job, where I get to play to my strengths and combine my creativity, love of food and nutritional knowledge.
Personally I am really looking forward to building an eco-friendly home, with the most amazing kitchen that opens onto a vegetable garden. Eating home grown seasonal produce and running nutrition classes in my garden is a dream I hope will someday soon become a reality.
Finish these sentences…
I get excited when… I wake up and the sun is shining
My favourite indulgence is… dark chocolate coated, freeze dried strawberries
To relax I like to…. read a book in the sun or go for a walk in the park with my dogs
In my handbag you’ll find…. a glass bottle of alkaline water, paw paw & honey lip balm and an orange moleskin note book for jotting down recipe ideas. I never know when inspiration will strike!
I can’t live without my… husband. He encourages me to chase my dreams even if they terrify me. He is my best friend, a great cook and gives an excellent massage!
Want more to know where you can find your own delicious pressed juice + personalised nutritional advice? Head down to one of Pressed Juices’ many stores around Australia and be sure to follow them on Facebook and Instagram.