Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I grew up in Hong Kong and have always considered it my home. I was very happy to bring my family back here almost 3 years ago. My dad is still here (my parents moved here in 1979 when I was 1, my mum also died here) and now my brother and his wife have also moved back. I love the diversity and vibrance of Hong Kong. The unique energy of this city has always stayed with me. I moved to London for university and lived there for 16 years, however I always felt my most comfortable and myself when I came back home for holidays.
As a naturopath I am keen to give people back responsibility for their own health and body strength as well as responsibility for the health of the planet. They are intrinsically linked. Originally I trained as an actress in London and the stage is where I feel my most comfortable. It makes sense to me to speak up, get involved, teach, talk and write to get people to start to listen and react. I also feel that it has given me great empathy, adaptability and listening skills to try to help people, rather than push and dictate to others. I have now been in the health industry for almost 10 years, although I have been interested in natural health for much longer. I started as a personal trainer and soon realized that physical health also relied on emotional and environmental health. Holistic has always been a key word in my vocabulary and I am always trying to zoom out to take in the whole picture. I love to cook and make things from scratch and I am very keen to support local businesses and artisan products that give us back real food and traditional methods. Minimizing chemicals, man made elements in our life is something that I practice personally and professionally.
We have never been so sick as a global community, both in physical health and emotional energy. I have 2 young kids and I am constantly playing a juggling act between spending quality time with them, in nature, in my clinical practice and in writing on Loula Natural, other publications and my series of natural health books. I feel a huge sense of responsibility to use my knowledge to help others to achieve true health and strength. I have a great passion for children’s health, as well as for all ages and stages. Fermenting, creating a balanced bacterial internal and external environment, is a huge part of my own personal journey and also the health of my family, clients, friends, family and of course the planet. I love seeing that my kids are so strong physically and emotionally. I also love receiving feedback about how people have made fundamental changes in their lives and are experiencing long term benefits from help, support and advice I have given them. It makes my day, and fuels my fire!
What is your greenest daily habit?
Minimizing chemicals in our home. Whether it is in our foods, cleaning products and cosmetics. I have always chosen healthy environmental choices. Even as a kid I tried to be environmentally aware. Through supporting farmers markets, organic produce, local business but also making an effort to grow and make my own. I pride myself on trying to reduce packaging in our lives, reduce our impact on the planet whilst also taking steps to give back to nature. Our cleaning materials are all home made (thanks largely to Kombucha, essential oils, baking powder and other vinegars and natural products), my cosmetics are also natural or homemade (I practice ‘no-poo’, use crystal deodorants with essential oils, and salts and oils like coconut oil and shea butter). My kids have never had chemicals on their skin, hair or teeth (I even make our toothpaste!). I still have a way to go in terms of clothes, shoes etc and I am constantly aware of my excessive consumer habits, but I appreciate that I am work in progress and that life is a balancing act!
Tell us about Loula Natural and its mission.
My mantra for Loula Natural is “Giving you the Strength to be YOUR best.” Treating everyone as an individual and responding to their own individual needs. Treating them as a whole person to the best of my ability to give them back their life. If people are going to make changes they have to want to and believe that they can do it. Strength comes from being true to your own body, mind and spirit. I think as individuals we can make huge shifts and changes on a global scale by making small changes to our daily lives. I am so passionate about the body’s ability to heal itself and by giving ourselves back to nature, we can try to shift back to balance. Through writing, speaking and teaching classes I hope that I am helping individuals, as well as myself, to make universal changes. Global strength starts with the individual.
What are some of the greenest features of Loula Natural?
Getting back to being a creator rather than a consumer. Making, growing, using foods to heal and strengthen. Reinforcing the fundamental need for bacterial balance both internally and externally by publishing and teaching fermentation. Teaching our children to take responsibility for their own health and the health of the planet by creating a healthy relationship to food and nature. Using energy medicine like EFT and Bach Flower Remedies to help shift personal and global energy frequencies. Publishing and sharing homemade cosmetics, cleaning products, recipes and tips and tricks to get back to nature.
Share a green Hong Kong tip with our readers.
Get hiking. Hong Kong has the most incredible mix of industry and nature. We have beaches, streams, waterfalls, jungles (both concrete and natural!), mountains, valleys, islands and country parks. Get out there and explore our unique environment. Its on your doorstep. Lantau Island is bigger than Hong Kong Island – there is so much to experience. Choose an MTR station, find a trail (they are EVERYWHERE) and take it in! When you are there, pick up rubbish you see along the way, smile at others who cross your path, build a relationship to nature and take a moment to stop and breathe it all in.
Where is your favorite place to eat green in Hong Kong?
Good question, with two young kids we do a lot of our eating at home! I love going to artisanal markets to taste food people are passionate about making and creating. I have loved working with Choice Cooperative and Green Vitamin to help provide truly healthy foods for others to enjoy. I generally enjoy food that has been made by someone else for me as I do so much creating and nourishing for others! My comfort food is generally Asian food- I love the simple, fresh ingredients that make up Vietnamese and Thai food. I love salads and a really good steak, so I am open to some recommendations on that front!
Green Queen Heroes is a monthly series showcasing the talented and relentless individuals who are helping to make Hong Kong a greener, cleaner, kinder place to live and giving us eco-warriors more accessible options!
All images courtesy of Louise Kane Buckley.