COVID-19 may be the illness on everyone’s mind, but it is not the only epidemic ravaging the country. When youth activist, author and nutritionist Haile Thomas was a young girl, her father was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, a disease that — like the novel coronavirus — has disproportionately affected the Black community. Thomas’ family members immediately decided to alter their diets, cutting down on the amount of meat they consumed. Eventually, Thomas and her parents converted to veganism. Thomas’ family turned a tragic situation into a lifelong commitment to physical, spiritual and emotional health. Now, Thomas is the youngest certified integrative nutrition health coach in the United States. She also started her own nonprofit, HAPPY, which stands for Healthy Active Positive Purposeful Youth, to promote self-care, food safety and mental wellness among young kids.
In her new book, Living Lively:80 Plant-Based Recipes to Activate Your Power and Feed Your Potential, Thomas shares not only healthy recipes for healthy, tasty dishes but also recipes for success, happiness and community building. Rolling out recently caught up with the young activist to discuss her latest work.
Tell us about your new book. How would you summarize it?
Living Lively is an empowerment cookbook, which essentially means that it’s kind of bridging the gap between two different worlds: the world of self-growth and self-care, traditionally speaking, and then the world of food and nutrition. In Living Lively, there are 80 plant-based recipes to activate your power and fuel your potential, but there [are] also an entire 100 pages dedicated to seven points of power, which are essentially seven different areas in our lives that we can nurture and nourish to have holistic well-being.
Read more about Thomas’ motivations for writing on the next page.