Falling Madly In Love With Amanda Chantal Bacon
Amanda Chantal Bacon is one of those people you crush on from afar. Through her awakened business, her vibrant social media, her chronicled daily habits that easily put a day in my life to shame (we're talking pranayama discipline, Moon Juice, and antioxidant superfoods all day long. Everything has a purpose), you feel like you get her. You know her. You understand what she's about and you're a fan of what you understand. You're completely intrigued. Listen super closely when I say: Amanda is so much more than that. She is a badass #GIRLBOSS, inspiring mother, skilled chef, devout kundalini practitioner and passionate medicinal food educator sharing her message with the world, one life-changing dust at a time. Yes, she can somehow manage to look stunning in a white turban, helps people build moon pantries across the country, and has a glow so strong it can even radiate through the screen of my iPhone. A few more things you should know about Amanda before we continue... Her authenticity is both mesmerizing and contagious and she has the ability to roll her eyes at green juice with a slightly dirty mouth and a wicked sense of humor. Her sense of joy is palpable. This woman is even more than I had imagined.
How did you get involved with the world of health and wellness?
"I was a chef and I was in the world of fine dining and California cuisine, but my whole life has been spent in health and wellness out of necessity. I was quite sickly growing up and western medicine did not work for me. By the time I was four it was a really dire situation. The doctors couldn't figure it out. I couldn't breathe and had a terrible immune system. The biggest thing, though was that I could not breathe. An Ayurvedic doctor in a health food store in Manhattan in the early 80's heard my breath and pulled me aside and was like, 'No sugar, wheat, or dairy. I'm pulling you out out of the aisle because I hear you coughing, this is what you need to do.' Within 72 hours everything changed. From there I was super conscious of everything that I ate."
And how did this lead to where you are today with your business?
"Moon Juice is really a product of living this lifestyle right, continuing to go on to be diagnosed with learning disabilities, depression, autoimmunity, pre-diabetes, and Hashimoto's - Western medicine will just tell you there's something wrong with every part of you if you let them. I really unplugged from that system when I was 17 and I moved to Italy. I wanted to stop the madness, and the noise, and the diagnoses, and the chemicals, and the doctors, and everyone said, 'You're not gonna make it.' I thought, Well then I'll die trying. This just didn't feel like my truth. It's been a journey, and it's been a journey with falling in love with organic foods, and plant foods, and whole foods. That journey has allowed me to work with great chefs and working with Susan Cohen and eventually moving to California via traveling around the world. And having this body that is very healthy and very happy now, but I walk a fine line. It's as if I'm in a delicate little car, so if I veer too far off I am gonna slip into those states with my thyroid, and my adrenals, and my kidneys, and hormones, and brain chemistry, and all of those things will happen. I just thought, 'Hey, if this is the situation, how do I make this situation delicious, fun, sexy and decadent?' I made an entire job out of it. This is going to dictate my life, so let's have fun."
It seems like you were, from the get-go, forced to have a super intimate relationship with your body, how has the evolution of the world of health and wellness influenced this over time?
"I'm always wary of it in the world of health and wellness, it can sometimes feel like that same impossibly skinny model from the fashion world in the 80's all of the sudden was put into yoga pants and a sports bra. They took the smoky eye off and now it's sun-kissed freckles holding a green juice, but we're still talking about a model, who's modeling for a job, and she may or may not be healthy. Everybody attaches to this thought. My yoga practice is probably not good enough, or my green juice isn't green enough, or my meditation practice isn't genuine enough because I still don't look like that."
And what is your relationship with your body like today?
"My relationship with my body has really come into this sweet, sweet place. One of the things that I just feel like, through diet and meditation and yoga, having a baby, and, honestly, having a business is I've reached a level of joy and happiness. My brain is functioning so well! My hormones are functioning so well, they've reached new peaks that I hadn't experienced yet. My energy levels are so rad right now that I actually choose to have a little juice on my bones. My body could easily go and be seven to ten pounds less than it is now, and that's almost a little bit of a natural state. I wouldn't change much. It would just be saying, 'Oh, I'm not gonna have that extra three spoonfuls of almond butter or ghee' five times a day as I like to cruise through the kitchen and just do that. I actually don't stop myself from doing that, and I let myself ease into it a little bit more. What I've found is my life experience, and my life on that extra five to ten pounds of juiciness, has given me the direct experience of more happiness, more energy, bigger thoughts, more stamina, better sex, happier giggles, I have more energy for my child, I have more for my friends - I actually am just happier with myself. I have a stronger connection to the universe, I'm having more vivid conversations with God, it's kind of rad. Really dropping into that experience, and living it ... I think it's kinda cute. Wearing a little dress where there's a little butt, and there's a little tummy, I wink at that now. I do. I look at that and I'm like, 'That's my joy'. That's not to say that everybody needs a little booty to be joyful. It depends on your body type, but I think it's giving yourself the freedom and the space to explore and find, for you, that perfect little place of where you're just happy and bouncy and joyful and effective and relevant in life. What does your body look like in that, and to just love that. It's my push for everyone, the pat on the back and the hug, or whatever someone needs to hear to just go for it. Just give yourself that space to really explore and find the coziest, happiest, most loving you."
"Can I just inspire a little love in someone? Can I make someone smile right now, can I make you feel better about yourself, can we connect in a very casual, real way, for maybe just a second, that makes you just a little happier, a little more comfortable? I'd be happy if there were a handful of people that could say, 'Yep, I saw that girl walking down the street once. We smiled. It was cool.' Essentially that, and then I work with food, so one of the big things I just hope for food, and health, is I think that health has been cloaked in so much fear. There's this whole air of guilt thing, like if I don't eat this way I'm going to get cancer, I'm eating this way because I'm afraid of something else. I would love to share with people and let people find their joy and find their little angle where they can fall madly in love with these plant foods that bring so much joy and so much happiness, not to just you and your family and your friends, but the planet. Those little plants growing out of the soil also make the earth so happy. The sun, moon and stars so happy. Everything is so happy when we're loving these plants, so I guess the message behind that is just falling madly in love with them."