Sarah Nicole Baker is a certified plant-based nutrition & holistic health coach, TV & media personality, and motivational speaker. She is the founder of Balanced Babe.com, BeHealthful an innovative series of health and wellness retreats and conferences.
I recently attended Behealthful’s Retreat: Spring Awakening and had such a great day that I reached out to Sarah to see if she would spend a little one-on-one-time with YASOU natural skin care to give us inside wisdom and guidance in our quest for a healthier beauty awareness.
Hello Sarah and thank you for spending some time with us!
YASOU: Sarah, how did your passion for health and wellness begin? Was there an aha moment, when you knew this is what you wanted to do?
SB: My passion for nutrition research and holistic health was a process that started to take hold when I was in my late teens, but I was modeling and acting full time which consumed my life. I lived in a small area in Istanbul, always cooked from scratch, and ate nothing but plant-based foods – all fresh and local produce. I transformed my lifestyle abroad and realized that I needed to promote this way of life in my community.
Being in the modeling industry is also very tough. There is a lot of criticism and it seems as if there is constantly a microscope on the model’s body image. I’ve been around a lot of young girls who have very poor self-esteem and extremely bad eating habits. Istanbul is an international meeting point for models all around the world. That trip turned a light bulb on in my head. I actually started Balanced Babe while living in Turkey and it evolved from there!
YASOU: People often associate good health with nutrition and exercise, but what about incorporating health into beauty routines? Are women waking up to the fact that they need to make better choices in their skincare and beauty products?
SB: The Balanced Babe lifestyle is all about bringing balance to your being which includes: nutrition, beauty, fitness, lifestyle, work, personal growth, personal life and more. We are definitely promoting home remedies for beauty routines and we stress the relationship between nutrition and beauty. A lot of what we consume shows on the outside. Our skin is the largest organ on our body and shows when we have impurities going on within us. When you feed yourself junk food, processed foods, sugars and alcohol, it will show on your skin. When you feed yourself natural, whole foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds, and complex carbs, you will also see it on your skin.
Women are starting to realize the importance of what you put ON your skin as well as maintaining beauty from the inside out. Harsh chemicals in products are absorbed into our system through our skin, and it’s starting to be eminent in the wellness industry. Natural, cruelty-free and plant-based products are definitely taking over!
YASOU: What is it that you look for in the skin care products you use? What should women look out for?
SB: It all depends on what I’m using the products for. I look for botanicals, flower essences, essential oils and other natural ingredients first. For example in my hair I always use products with Jojoba oil. The number one thing I look for when shopping for skin care is that my products are paraben and cruelty-free. I love products that have Green Tea to calm inflammation and vitamin A and C to jump start cellular turnover.
YASOU: With Spring upon us what should we be incorporating into our diets to help revive our skin after this long winter season?
SB: Definitely foods that are high in water content! Instead of constantly guzzling water to stay hydrated this season, eat water dense foods such as cucumber, watermelon, and asparagus. The foods highest in water content are fruits and veggies – you can never go wrong with fruits and veggies!
YASOU: What is one of your favorite wellness tips to help one start a path to a healthier lifestyle?
SB: The art of crowding out. I talk about this a lot in interviews and workshops. Crowding out is the exact opposite of cutting out. When you focus on the foods you need to cut out, you can end up getting discouraged and may feel deprived. Crowding out is done by focusing on foods to ADD to your diet, like the food groups I mentioned above. Experiment with nutrient dense recipes that you love. Once you start craving your favorite plant based recipes and focus on all of the options you have to cook with, you will naturally start to cut down on processed foods.
YASOU: I think we have touched on skin care, and nutrition but really we need to incorporate exercise and mental wellness to really be balanced, right? All these things really combine to result in better health and beauty. What would you suggest is a simple mental exercise one can start practicing?
SB: One trick I use that definitely helps me stay sane during the week is to make your to-do list before you go to bed. By doing this, you are planning the day ahead of you which allows you to get a better sleep. When I don’t have a to-do list all set on my night stand, I wake up in the middle of night forgetting something that I needed to do which disrupts my sleeping schedule and makes me groggy the next day. This trick is extremely simple to do and is a great step towards keeping your schedule organized, and your stress levels low!
YASOU: Can one practice happiness?
SB: Definitely! This can be done by investing time in YOURSELF. Do this right now: write down what makes you happy. Is that time with friends? Time with family? Alone time? Figure out what your “happy-place” is, and schedule time in your planner to do that at least one hour a day. Stop working past 7 p.m. and spend time with family. Waking up earlier is a lot better than going to bed later after staring at a computer screen! Make plans with friends over the weekend, call your family if they are in another state. Humans are meant to be connected with one another, love is a universal language. Practicing love can easily translate to happiness, and the easiest way to love and be loved is by having those human connections.
YASOU: Sarah, thank you so much for taking the time to share your knowledge with us! We really enjoyed speaking with you.