Moving Beyond Pain, Naturally
Achieving greater health, one sip at a time.
Vancouver based nutritionist, entrepreneur, doula and author, Tori Holmes is nothing short of a strong and captivating woman. Having recently closed the doors to her long standing local juicery, Tori is taking on the global role of inspiring others with her triumphant journey through pain and recovery along with her learnings that inspired her new book Beauty Water. Luminous and fresh faced, Tori shares her golden rules for thriving in recovery, building a strong nutritional foundation, and counteracting inflammation with one of her favourite Beauty Water recipes.
Could you share a little more about your journey through pain and recovery?
“At the age of 21 I became the youngest woman to row across the Atlantic ocean and lived 86 days at sea on a 24 foot boat. During a storm, a large wave swallowed me underwater and my boat plummeted down on my body. As a result, the final 30 days were spent rowing 12 grueling hours per day with broken ribs. No sooner after surviving the journey home did I discover I would embark on another endeavour — surviving breast cancer. The diagnosis was—what I perceive—to be a result of psychologically escaping my body during starvation, severe dehydration and the crippling pain of rowing with broken ribs. Although I attribute my survival on the boat to my ability to mentally escape my body, my greatest learning was overcoming cancer by doing quite the opposite. Listening to every whisper of my body’s conversation became and still is my greatest teacher.
When did living a 100% natural lifestyle become important for you?
When my body couldn’t stomach anything, I turned to water to build up my base and give me life again.
“There was a point in my physical recovery process where my body couldn’t stomach anything apart from water. Our bodies, just like plants require this life giving substance in order to heal, rejuvenate and thrive. Going back to the most natural and depended upon resource—water—was what led me into recovery and now, prevention.
There is often emphasized tone on the importance of staying hydrated in the world of athleticism and health, what is it about water that makes it so good for recovery?
“Water is the system that allows out body to keep moving and tuning over new life, which helps us perform and recover at our best. Disease and inflammation come from a lack of movement and cell turnover in the body. Stress and pain are one in the same, and trigger a systemic flush of our minerals every time our body needs resources to process an emotional or physical event. Minerals and water have a magnetic attraction which is important to note given that minerals hold the oxygen that our bodies require for longevity."
Tell us about the intention behind your new book, Beauty Water?
We all have one need in common, water. It’s essential to every living organism.
— Tori Holmes
“My aim is to help inspire everyday hydration rituals. If at bare minimum these recipes help you drink more water, then that’s great. As a nutritionist, I encourage my clients to get rid of their wellness “to do” lists and to choose one thing daily, that makes them feel good. In an era where time is our biggest currency, it’s about taking what we have to do— i.e: drinking water— and making it impactful. Similar to plants, we need to water ourselves in order to absorb vitamins and minerals and this book makes it a simple and joyful experience—which is truly the secret to well-being.”
Is all water created equal when it comes to supporting our bodies?
“It’s really not, and I learned that the hard way. Part of the reason I became so dehydrated while rowing across the Atlantic was that I relied on a desalinator which—at the time I had no idea—stripped my water of all minerals. Simply put, water needs to be mineralized in order for our bodies to receive the benefits.”
Tori’s Top Tips For Creating Quality Water
Whatever you choose, make sure it brings you joy. Doing something for the sake of health, isn't enough, you’ve got to make sure it resonates with your needs.
— Tori Holmes
- Mineralize: “The classic office water coolers, tap water or bottled water don’t offer a sufficient source of mineralization. Some himalayan sea salt or a salt brine can enhance absorption. A charcoal stick in your glass is a cost effective way to purify your water without stripping it of minerals.”
- Choose quality over quantity: “A quick way to tell if your body is absorbing the water you’re drinking is to pay attention to how frequently “your making trips to the bathroom post consumption. Frequent trips immediately after drinking can be a sign of poor retention.”
- Drink your glass at room temperature: “Opting for a room temperature glass allows the body to better absorb the benefits. The plumpness of our skin as well as a joyful mood are little indicators that your body is feeling hydrated.”
When you’re experiencing pain, what is your ritual for recovery?
I can remember asking myself how I could row an entire ocean only to be defeated by my own body in the end. I later learned it’s because the surrender is just as important as the push.
— Tori Holmes
“I know pain very well, i've had more lessons transcending emotional pain than physiological. The truth is that physical pain comes from an initial emotional reaction. For me, the 3 things that will always hold true to my recovery process are
- Sleep: “Just as we practice in the world of athleticism, there’s a time to push the body and a time to rest. Sleep gets us out of our own way, and allows the body to do what it does best — heal.”
- Water: “Our bodies are made up of water, minerals and collagen. Much like a car, our bodies can’t operate on mediocre fuel. Water at its finest quality is a non negotiable for me.”
- Movement: “Our bodies thrive in movement. Mobility, massage and stimulation are a constant reminder for the body to replenish and turnover new cells.”
Blue-Green Algae Lemonade
“I use this recipe as a baseline for nutrients, recovery and inflammation. It’s best taken as your last drink in the evening or first drink in the morning. The featured ingredient, Blue Green Algae is rich in beta-carotene and other vital nutrients you body needs to repair and restore itself. For centuries it has been used as food and medicine, and is packed with over 65 vitamins, minerals and enzymes that are easily absorbed in our bodies.” - Tori Holmes, Author of Beauty Water recipes.
Makes 1 ½ cups || Takes 5 minutes || Lasts 1 day in the refrigerator
- 1 cup of water
- Juice of ½ lemon
- 1 tsp of apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp maple syrup,plus more to taste
- ⅛ to ¼ tsp blue-green algae powder (chlorella or spirulina)
- ½ cup of ice for serving
- Sprigs of mint or basil for garnish
- In a blender, combine the water, lemon juice, vinegar, maple syrup and blue-green algae powder, and blend on high for 1 minute.
- To serve, pour over ice and garnish with lots of mint or basil.
- Enjoy and feel better, one sip at a time.
Note. Some algae can have a slight scent, so I like to be generous with the garnishes that will provide a fresh, herbal aroma.