Natasha St. Michael was born with a hole in her heart. Growing up with serious health issues and depression, she eventually turned to nutrition for help. What started as an experiment, turned into a lifestyle.
After healing many of her health issues naturally, Natasha began sharing her story, tips, and health regime with the world. Today, her YouTube channel, blog, and Juice Fast/Raw food challenges, are some of the most successful online health programs around.
We asked Natasha if she’d be willing to share her story with us.
Enjoy – and cheers to radiant health!
How did you get interested in raw foods/health/nutrition?
I got into natural health and nutrition when I was in my late teens. Since I was a young child I was constantly challenged by serious health issues. I was born with an Atrial Septal Defect (a hole in my heart) and had open heart surgery at the age of 5 1/2 years old.
Into my teens I was diagnosed with pre-cancer of the cervix, a few years later I was diagnosed with Osteonecrosis (a rare bone disease of the hip joint), and later in my mid twenties, I was diagnosed with Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome. It seemed that every few years I would go to the doctor for a check-up and get diagnosed with some crazy disease or illness!
Because I faced such challenges, it was important to me to take my health in my own hands and do what I could on my part to become healthier, stronger and more vital. I found myself gravitating towards studying and researching natural health, nutrition, alternative therapies and meditation as a means of exercising my options and improving the condition of my health and wellbeing.
What are some of the benefits you’ve seen in your own life from changing your eating habits?
The biggest benefit I’ve had from changing my diet and eating super healthy is actually the improvement of my mood. Since my early childhood, I suffered from severe depression. It always felt like I had a black cloud over my head. Everything always felt so heavy, and I found if I was constantly weighed down by my emotions, there was little else I was motivated or inspired to do. The more I took care of myself, which included having a healthy diet, the better I felt, and the more empowered and inspired I was. Little by little, this is what got the ball rolling, if I was in good spirit, than I felt I could do more, be more, and live more!
As I started eating healthier, my emotional health starting improving and so did my physical health, and in fact I was able to reverse many of the health conditions I was diagnosed with, naturally! For me, if my emotional health is off balance, everything falls off balance with it, so it is super important for me to eat well, sleep well, exercise daily, be creative, fill my days with fulfilling and joyful activities and surround myself with loving family and friends.
My diet is very important, eating healthy gives me balance, energy, vitality, strength and stability. I’m always amazed how the food I eat affects me. I used to be addicted to sugar and caffeine, and I was all over the place, up and down, bad skin, bad health, moody, and depressed. By eating healthy it helped give me stability and a strong foundation, where my health and mood became balanced and centered, so I could do more with my life, enjoy the freedom of good health, have great energy to be active and do things, and sharpen my mind to pursue my goals and dreams.
Tell us a bit about your juice fast/raw food challenges.
I created two online programs that I host every month, the 10 Day Juice Fasting Program and the 7 Day Raw Food Challenge. Myself, over the years I have done many juice fasts and I used to be on a raw vegan diet for several years, and I got such incredible results from doing these cleanses, that I wanted to share it and support others that were interested in doing these types of detox programs and cleanses. I am Health & Lifestyle Coach and I found from working with my clients that they were more successful doing these types of programs as a group, while simultaneously having a clear guideline as to what to eat and do.
I created these programs which include an eBook of guidelines, recipes, and an outline of the program, as well as daily videos that are 20-40 minutes long , that covers a broad range of topics, information, tips and advice pertaining to the programs. There is also a private online forum for each of the programs that participants can connect with one another from around the world as they are doing either the Juice Fasting Program or the 7 Day Raw Food Challenge, and I am actually on the forum daily answering questions and offering additional support and motivation.
The programs are great! They are clear and simple, and I find doing these types of programs as a group, having the forum to chat and me being there to offer additional support and guidance, really helps people to feel motivated and supported, and therefore ensures success! Doing a juice fast or a week on a raw food diet is a great way to jump start healthy eating. I find that once people do a week of juicing or eating raw foods, this allows them to let go of the caffeine, the sugar, the processed food, the junk food, etc.. And therefore after the program is completed they are much more motivated and equipped to continue eating healthy and taking care of themselves.
Go for it! Make your dream a reality! If someone wants to live and work abroad, then start getting ready now– start planning, starts researching, start saving money, create a solid business you know you can run while living in another location, etc.. What holds most people back is doubt and uncertainty. If you really want something, make it happen! I dreamed for years to live abroad and now I have been living in Bali for almost 2 years. It didn’t happen overnight, but this is something I so strongly wanted to do, that I was prepared to do what it took to reach my goal. It involved a lot hard work, saving money, being organized and prepared– but it was worth it!
Give us your best tips for goal-setting (and following through).
I find by making goals where you have other people in mind– this is what sets you up for success. The biggest victories I have had were because behind my goal I wanted to inspire people, be an example and make a difference. When I faced health challenges, or had goals in my career or relationships, my goal wasn’t only to succeed for myself, but also to be an inspiration to others, to show that the impossible is actually possible. I’ve always strived to be that person that someone thinks about and says to themselves, “If Natasha can do it, so can I!” Personally, I believe every challenge, every obstacle, is one’s mission, and overcoming them is our personal responsibility to ourselves and others, to show just how far we can take our lives and the infinite amount of possibilities and victories life has to offer.
Many times when I set a goal or I am dealing with a big challenge or obstacle, I imagine myself telling someone about how I overcame the obstacle or achieved the goal. I would do this over and over again, like I was rehearsing my victory speech, I would rehearse in my mind what I would say, how excited I would be and how happy and inspired the person or people would be from hearing my story. Not only would it inspire me to keep going and give me the optimism, courage and spirit to succeed, but it always ensures my success as well! Our victories are everyone’s victories!
What is your favorite raw food recipe?
Super simple: Apple slices with almond butter!
You’re stranded on an island with only one book, which book would it be?
The Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman (I’ve been reading this book at least once a year for over 20 years!!)
Private concert – who’s playing?
Philip Glass – Solo Piano
Having to drive a car and not knowing how.
Memoirs of a Geisha
Favorite thing about Bali?
My boyfriend, my orchid garden, and learning the Indonesian language.
“Natasha’s personal goal and mission is to inspire and motivate as many people as possible to take better care of themselves, honor their lives and live to the fullest! She is qualified as a Certified Holistic Health Counselor by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and is a member of the American Association of Drugless Practitioners. She works fulltime as a Health & Lifestyle Coach, hosts monthly online Juice Fasting Programs, 7 Day Raw Food Challenges and a free educational & motivational video blog.”
Be sure to check-out Natasha’s website: