Hello, and welcome to my blog! As you will learn by browsing through my site, I'm someone who is very passionate about photography, nutrition, wellness, and living a healthy lifestyle - and after several years of thinking about starting a blog, I finally did it!
I have always loved helping people - this is probably what led me to become a Registered Nurse in 2013. Working in a hospital for a few years really opened my eyes to the fact that people are living longer, but are also sicker than ever. A lot of my patients have to deal with gastrointestinal issues (i.e. infections, inflammation, surgeries), which prompted me to educate myself about gut health, and the role that food plays in overall health. I'm still learning lots and continuing to educate myself each day!
I truly believe in the healing and nourishing powers of food and drink, and am always excited to try out new recipes. I grew up in North Vancouver, B.C. mostly eating a conventional "western" diet, which included many processed foods that were high in refined sugar and fat (the bad kind), and low in nutrients.
Several years ago, in my early 20's, I began to hear more and more about gluten and dairy allergies and sensitivities, as well as the negative implications of a diet high in refined sugar. This inspired me to try my own "elimination diet" (although I really didn't even know what that was at the time!)
Lo and behold, I felt a million times better without gluten, sugar, and dairy - my mind was clear, I had more energy, my clothes fit better, my skin cleared up, my digestion improved, and I just felt healthier and happier overall. While this was all great, I quickly realized I had to get busy and creative in the kitchen, which is what has led me to develop such a vested interest in and passion for the food I put into my body!
Over the past year, I've also learned a lot more about balance, and that it's ok to treat myself once in a while! For example, see the pic below - I'm about to enjoy the yummiest gluten, dairy, and sugar filled donut from Cartem's Donuts (they also have vegan and gluten free donuts, which I of course also sampled). In my opinion, everyone thrives on different things, and the "best" lifestyle for you is the one that you find the most sustainable and enjoyable!
Through Zakiya's Kitchen, I share many of the recipes that I have used and created over the years with you all. Most of the pictures that you will see on my site are taken by me (on my faithful iPhone 6...hopefully one day I'll be able to upgrade to a Nikon or Canon) - my recently discovered passion for food photography bodes very well for the creation of this blog! I also hope to discuss a wide spectrum of topics related to wellness and holistic living. After all, health is wealth, and it's my hope to be able to help others in their journey to happiness, wellness, and nourishment*.
Thanks for following along! xo
* While I love being able to provide useful information related to health, nutrition, and wellness, my advice and opinions should not replace those of a professional. I only use credible sources and my own knowledge (which is founded upon years of education and research), but it is always worth contacting your health care provider if you are unsure about any content I post on this site.