Meeting Mimi Kirk is an inspiring and very nourishing adventure! Together with TCM & Detox Expert Ursula Peer I met the Raw Food Queen at Peer's Finca in Santanyi, Mallorca. I had an unforgettable time, talking, listening and laughing - read about Going Raw, Life Changing Moments and the Organic Revolution!
„When you become mindful of what you eat, then you become mindful about the way you live.“ Mimi Kirk
Mimi, you decided to live part-time in Mallorca. Why this island and how is life as a Raw Food Queen between „jamon-loving“ Spaniards?
Mimi: (laughing) Oh, that is a great question! First of all it is so interesting how I got here, because someone asked me to come to a talk in Port d’Andratx. She was a fan online and she was just to open up a restaurant. She was very interested in healthy eating and raw food. She emailed me and then we had couple skype calls… The next thing you know.
We had many tours, that my boyfriend and I were going to, and here we were for the first time. I have never been here before until then. And that was last year.
And the decision to live here …?
Mimi: It was late at night, we were right in Port d’Antratx and we woke up in the morning and my boyfriend Mike looked out the window and said „Wow, lets move here!“
I have been wanting to live in Europe or somewhere out of the United States for a long time, so I said, „Ok, lets do it!“ That was it. It was a very quick decision and we kept talking about it. I took a picture of the street where I was gonna live and it became reality.
Exploring the island, you have met a lot of like-minded people. How health-conscious is Mallorca in the eyes of a passionate raw foodist?
Mimi: Actually, everywhere I go in the world I am finding people are very conscious about their health. Raw Food is not so big here, but vegan, there are so many vegans I have met here, it is becoming very popular and I think there is a lot of health-minded people here. But I do think the spaniards have a long tradition of barbecuing their meet or whatever they do, and they teach their children those things.
I think in the world today we have to accept everybodys lifestyle, I like being around like-minded people, I find it so enjoyable to be around people who care about animals, care about the planet and all of that. But I am very accepting of everybodys lifestyle because interesting enough, some people pick vegan for the animals, some people pick it for the health, some people are raw-vegan for their health, some for the environment, so there is all kinds. There is people who believe in being natural and they got plastic surgery. I have learned to accept all the kinds of people and wherever path their are on.
So if you just start and you eat some vegan and some raw, you are on a good path. If you are conscious about making changes for your health and for the planet, I think those people are on the right path and sometimes it takes time.
Ursula: I agree, once you start to be more aware about what to put on your plate and how it can affect your life, that’s when you start an amazing journey. And as you say Mimi – the journey takes you so much further than just lifestyle thoughts – in the end it is about health, love and freedom. And a great way to meet likeminded people.
How is travelling as a Raw Foodie?
Mimi: Well, before I travel anywhere, I always look-up, I google everything, to find out what’s going on. I was reading ABC Mallorca since last year.
I looked for Vegetarian and Vegan, and so I found a lot of interesting places to go. You know, I stepped out to meet people and then all of a sudden through them, all this people started mashing, we met so many people, like-minded, which is so much fun! I love being around foodies, I even like being around foodies who are not vegan or vegetarian. Because people who love food, they are concerned about organic and good quality food.
There is this marvellous lady from Ibiza, Suzanna, who has three organic stores, and she supplies the restaurants. She goes around and tells them, if you can buy this for 15 Cents more and have organic, why would you do it? And I love her because so many vegans are not organic! They do not think about it so much, vegans are not eating meat, they think that’s it. And vegans and vegetarians are not always healthy, because they are eating processed food, they buy package goods. So just cause you are vegan, doesn’t mean you are eating healthy.
Vegans don’t realize between raw and vegan. It is really a big jump: When you are raw, you can’t eat package foods, really, unless there are raw. Nothing processed, nothing unless it is fresh most of the time, you can warm your food but you are not heating it and taking out the enzymes.
So that’s the thing, I do like people to know that there are different levels they should get healthy. It is not only just what you are eating, it is a lifestyle, it is everything. So you start eating one way and then all of a sudden there is all these things that start changing. That I think is really amazing when you become mindful what you eat, then you become mindful about the way you live. That’s the thing, being mindful about what you eat helps you change everything.
There are a lot of vegetarians they still eat animal products or wear leather, you know, they are vegetarians, they are not vegans. And they are doing that because they say they care for the animals. Not eating red meat, but they do not understand the rest of it. Like I didn’t when I started and then realized how is all attached. And I do really think when you are mindful and you stop killing to eat, that changes everything.
So, at first you became vegetarian?
Mimi: I was about 30 when I start as a vegetarian. I was widowed by 29, and I was eating everything. I think the meditation I was doing at this point of my life, brought me into consciousness about that everything is connected.
So one day, I was working in the film business, I am coming back to the studio, bought my lunch, and I had roastbeef. I took a bite and I thought I ate the back of my hand. I looked, I was so shocked, and then I went, „oh, flesh, I am eating flesh.“ What? I was so shocked, it made me sick to my stomach.
I came home that night and said to my kids, I can’t cook meat anymore. That was my first realization of eating flesh.
What kind of meditation did you do?
Mimi: I studied with two living Gurus, Hindu philosophy, since I am thirty, Swami Muktananda from Siddha Foundation and in India with Vedanta Swami Prabhavananda who wrote the book „How to know God“.
I couldn’t unterstand why I lost my husband, I was so confused, so a friend said, „Oh, you should meditate!“ and told me where to go to meditate. So everyday before work I went there and meditated. It put me into a completely different space about accepting everything. The process of life, the soul and rebirth, and how everything is connected, how everything is energy…
Ursula, since 2008 you are offering healthy holidays and detox retreats in Mallorca. SaVida is Detox, Yoga, Meditation and TCM nutrition. How did you get on this path?
Ursula: I am blessed my path wasn’t as shattering as yours, Mimi, being widowed at 29 – but too, it was a personal crisis that started my metamorphosis.
After a bit of a health slump followed by 6 weeks in a clinic I was sneaked out of the clinic to a incredibly wise and talented traditional Chinese medical practitioner – a visit that changed my life really. I immediately left the clinic on my own risk and started following TCM food recommendations and treatments and felt better by the minute. I then started a secret health affair parallel to my corporate job and finally 7 years later I left it with a couple of health degrees in my pocket. That’s how my revolution began.
And how is the response to such a holistic & healthy holiday? Today, Detox is very trendy, food awareness is a big part of modern, health-minded people - how do you feel about this trend?
Ursula: Amazing really. Reading my guests letters, thank you and feedback notes often brings tears to my eyes. Clearly it is my goal to create awareness and inspire, but actually reading things like “Thank you for giving me back my health” or “I do not remember ever having felt that good in my life” and so on tells you you are on the right track somehow.
Detox was by no means fashionable when I started. My idea of offering these healthy holidays to me was a perfect solution for a dilemma I had been having as a TCM nutrition coach: I did not like the fact that people felt like they were on a diet. Their feeling this lack of abundance troubled me – there is such richness, flavour and indulgence in healthy organic food – so the question was: How do I ignite this spark??
And this amazing island was the answer: Offering a wonderful holiday package including the health side of things and letting people experience, taste and feel the benefits. And it works, we grow, currently we are holding about 15 detox retreats per year.
Thank God Detox has become fashionable – it is so important to learn how to avoid toxins in our foods, on our plates and how to support our bodies to get rid of them. We live the Food Revolution, Organic Revolution!
Mimi: I think like you, that this is a revolution… When I started as vegetarian years ago there was very little, nobody even know. If you asked for it in a restaurant, no one knew what it was.
Now I travel around the world and I say „vegan“ or „raw“ then they know, „...ahh, crudo!“
But then there is this whole other group of people - they have the information but they do not use it, they do not care - you can see it at the grocery market, they just fill the basket. They are grabbing can goods of, they are grabbing Popcorn that you make in a microwave, they are grabbing all this food which is still very unhealthy. Today everyone talks about it. But there are some people who do not care. But it moves so fast and I think it is on the roll, I really do. I think it is amazing whats happened in the last 40 years! And since I went raw I see the difference of whats happened, how big that is. I mean I have a huge following and I am a raw foodist. People wanna know, they want the recipes, You know, it is amazing to me.
Ursula: I agree , I think it is a revolution and I think it is unstopable, really!
Mimi: And we need it, the planet needs it.
So, it is not just a trend…?
Mimi: No, it pasts its trend. It’s been around, it’s ancient, it’s time for it to open up! I don’t think it’s a trend. I can't imagine once you are conscious, that you ever go back. Now where we are now, we know better. You wanna feed your children poison? No, nobody wants to.
But what makes people still hesitate to change to a conscious lifestyle & nutrition?
Mimi: People think it’s only for people with money, I know a lot of people think only if you have money can you eat healthy and organic, but it’s really not true. Everybody can do it.
There are some foods that you can get by with, that’s not organic. You know, a pineapple or an avocado, something with a thick skin - if you can not buy it organic, you are okay with that. So everybody can figure it out.
And isn’t it a shame that organic food costs more than conventional food? I mean it is a shame that everybody doesn`t have access to it, because they subsidice the farmers on conventional, but they dont subsidise the organic farmers.
Ursula: Too I think people are overwhelmed by contradictory information and do not even know where to start. Meanwhile it is really easy. I always suggest one easy first step: quit highly processed foods and drinks and instead drink the best water available and switch refined sugar and salt for healthy options. That will make one major change…the rest will follow organically (laughs…what a punch!)
The point „Commitment." Anyone who has experienced a detox holiday, wants to integrate this in his everyday life. Often they fall back into their old patterns. How important is discipline?
Ursula: In my experience it is key is to achieve this amazingly addictive healthy feeling once – after that you just do not want to lose it again. And too you want to have the key to regain it in case your day to day schedule might interfear at one point. That’s all. This is why I offer my detox retreats – to give people this key feeling once.
And thats why I launched my first detox ebook last fall “Lemon Detox – der einfache Start in ein gesundes Leben” – in order to finally be able to offer the key to achieve this feeling without a Detox Retreat on Mallorca. The rest is just a question of organisation and commitment.
Mimi: It is discipline, but if you make a commitment to yourself? You have to have a strong commitment or you can’t stay with it. Either the health thing makes somebody have a very strong commitement - if they are sick, they have a strong commitment to doing something. If they are not and they feel basically ok, it’s harder for them to make the right choices when it comes to food or make the decision.
Always when I am working with clients they are asking me „What is your commitment?“, „Why do you wanna do this?“ And my commitment is, I don’t have time to fool around with my age.
I could get my family diseases, because even gens are a small part, you can still get that if you don’t take care of it. Like there is cancer in my family, my two sisters… Cancer, diabetes, parkinson, lucemia, everything. I was going down that road if I didn’t make a change. My blood pressure and cholesterol was high when I went raw. I made that change, a big commitment. Why would I go back on that?! So, yes, you have to have a strong commitment.
Like Ursula said, if you can get that feeling of what it feels like, to feel that way, it is addictive. When you go „Oh, I am not feeling that way, now I’m gonna have this juice this morning, that helps me a lot!“ …
How big is the step for a vegan to become „raw“?
Mimi: What I found interesting for myself: I am a Raw Vegan. And now I know all these vegans. And so now that I am in the vegan world, I understand thats a great segway into it and I think I can help vegans eat more raw food. Behause of the encymes… you have to juice and eat enough raw food.
Eating vegan cooked food is not gonna keep you healthy. It is a great wonderful compassionate way to live, no doubt about it, compassionate for the animal and for the environment, but it is not always the healthiest.
Hopefully by being here on the island, I can bring more raw food to the island and have people understand it, it is delicious food and it is more work a little bit for people, but you can include some of those dishes - and not just be vegan.
I hope to raise the consciousness to talk about health more than just eating vegan food.
How important is nutrition/diet on the way to a perfectly healthy, happy life?
Mimi: I think food is a big part of it, meditation, all of it. But you have to get rid of those subconscious negative things in your life.
Ursula: Yes, I think food is one approach… It just creates a good base to develop on all levels. Food is energy – and the quality of food definitely has a strong impact on the quality of our lives.
Mimi: That’s why I said in the beginning, it makes you mindful. You start eating right makes you mindful and then everything else starts to change.
Ursula: Exactly, it makes you more aware and it doesn’t really matter where you start - is it meditation where you start or is it healthy food or a detox for a week, whatever works best for you.
You can get older but that doesn’t mean you have to age. You can age but you do not have to get older... Mimi Kirk
Mimi: Yes, it just opens you up to see what is not maybe working in your life and what you could do better.
We are always working on ourselves. I haven’t stop working on myself. I discover new things about myself everyday. And now that I have a sense of humor about myself, I am able to laugh about it. And now i’ve got Mike laughing about it too! What else can you do?!
You take what comes, and as you age, you take your changes, your body changes, everything. You have to accept yourself. You can get older but that doesn’t mean you have to age. You know, you can age but you do not have to get older, that’s what I say all the time.
You don’t have to be older, there is nothing about going old gracefully. The fact is we are gonna age, accept your lines, accept youself. Stop this injection, stop this insecurity about who you are and just feel. You wanna feel a certain way?
I am very young spirited, thats my things… Not that I look that young! Put me in a funky dress and cut my hair off and curl it up and let it be grey. I look older (laughing)! But my spirit is very young, my energy level is very young, because I feel good when I wake up everyday, because I eat well! So it all ties back, right!?
So, after all that interesting insights from you, Mimi, about conscious living - how can you convince someone to go raw? Most of the people can’t imagine to eat only raw, veggie things…
Mimi: First of all: The food is delicious! It is the best desert you can ever have! Non guilty deserts! Raw Food is delicious. I make cheesecakes and pies, and chocolate icecream, candy, everything you can imagine. Honestly, the raw deserts will talk anybody into it. It is a kind of magic: You do have to learn to uncook!
We all know how to throw a meal together, very fast, and so to eat raw food, you can’t cook it, you have to learn to uncook and you have to find out what makes a pie, how can you make it stick together, how can you eat a Lasagne, what can you do?! I mean I make Spaghetti out of Zucchini, how do you get the flavour you love so much in everything? and I do. Thats why I wrote the book. Because I can make anything.
One of the challenges that I find most people have, is that They want to do it, but they have to cook for other people. That makes it very difficult to do it. what I learned is that I have to fix my meal first and then to cook for my partner or family. And my partner Mike said to me, it is like you are on an airplane and they tell you put your mask on before you put it on your child ;-) !
Which of your books might be the best one for NEW-RAWLERS? ;-)
Mimi: I am a big fan of all my books, I have one Juice book out, but in all my books there is health information, it is not just recipes.
I would suggest anyone starting out, the New-Rawlers, my first book „ Live raw“. It has very familiar foods. It has got Lasagne, Pizza, all the normal foods that people would eat. It is totally satisfying and delicious. The thing I noticed with Raw Food is you will actually eat less.
Mimi Kirk, 77 years, is an inspiring woman for thousands of foodies. She is author of three books about Raw Food and Juicing. Her website title „Young on Raw Food“ says everything: Aging healthy, happy and vital! The young-spirited Californian traveled the world and is still on the road - now, her second home is beautiful island Mallorca, where she is making a big wave in the veggie and vegan foodist scene. ...and by the way, with 71 years she was voted by PETA as „The Sexiest Vegetarian over 50“ in the US.
Books: Mimis latest book „The Ultimate Book of Modern Juicing“ has over 200 recipes and great tips for staying young. As well her first two books about Raw Food, „Live Raw“ and „Live Raw Around The World“ are inspiring gifts for everyone who needs re-freshing ideas for a vitalising way of life.
Website: Young on Raw Food
Facebook: Mimi Kirk
Ursula Peer, 44 years, radiant new author and Detox Expert from Mallorca. Through a life-changing health crisis in the late 20ties, she discovered the Traditional Chinese Medicin for herself and sticks with it since then. She completet several trainings in TCM and offers Detox Holidays on the sunny island. Her first book „Lemon Detox“ is out now and offers handy tips to start a healthy lifestyle, recipes and a detox program for home.
eBook: Only in German at the moment: „Lemon Detox - Genussvoll entgiften, gesunden und schlank bleiben – der einfache Start in ein gesundes Leben!“ eBook or print version via direct order at authors email, 15 Euro.
Website: Ursula Peer & Detox Holidays Mallorca
Facebook: SaVida Detox Mallorca
Photo Credit: Maria Hibbs, mariahibbs.com - Maria completed this inspiring meeting with the two ladies, being a vegan over the past decade and a curious, life loving woman, who loves to cook for family and friends. --- Thousand THX to you, I love you!
PS. Read the interview with Maria Hibbs here!