Vegan chef traveling the world, Claire Sharryn Roberto prioritizes health and well-being in all aspects of her creations. She also envisions her culinary works with the principle in mind: "We eat first with our eyes." Meet an inspiring healthy chef nourished by personal experiences and exciting life journeys.
Has cooking always been a passion for you?
Absolutely! I've loved cooking, baking, and creating with food since my early childhood. When I was a child, I never watched cartoons - my idea of entertainment was a cooking show! I was a fan of BBC Food. When I turned 7, I knew I wanted to become a chef. The many hours spent watching my grandmother cook on her old Aga stove were the source of inspiration that allowed me to become the chef I am today.
Why and how did you focus on healthy nutrition and well-being?
I became passionate about healthy eating because I struggled with eating disorders. I constantly wanted to lose weight. What I discovered on this journey went far beyond weight loss. I found true healing within my body and mind. I had struggled with gastrointestinal health issues all my life, so I naturally eliminated anything that was not good for health, which sparked my curiosity for integrative well-being.
After 16 years of battling eating disorders, I decided I wanted to heal. I knew I needed to learn to nourish myself properly, so I decided to pursue further studies and study nutrition and integrative well-being. A few years later, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's disease, which led me to delve even deeper into the world of health and functional medicine, and I even obtained certifications in integrative nutrition and Ayurvedic practitioner.
What is your relationship with adaptogenic plants? How did you discover them? How do you use them in your recipes today?
I discovered adaptogenic plants when I received a diagnosis of an autoimmune disease, Hashimoto's disease, and put it into remission through a dietary change, lifestyle, and these transformative herbs, roots, and super mushrooms (also known as adaptogens). I began studying the power of raw, functional, and medicinal foods to heal this disease, as well as my severe gastrointestinal health issues and hormonal imbalance.
I traveled to India (one of the many places in the world where herbs and healing are integral to culture and daily life), delved into the world of Ayurveda, consulted various experts in many fields, and trained in traditional dietary, lifestyle, and wisdom.
In a matter of a few months, I noticed a radical change. After about a year, my blood tests and thyroid-related hormone analyses returned to normal. What changed everything for me was learning to manage daily stress naturally using the power of adaptogens and super mushrooms.
Later, I began developing herbal remedies that I had been incorporating into my diet for years and turned them into my product: Alchemize. It's a formulation and blend of Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese medicine plants, adaptogens, and super mushrooms. These medicinal plants restored homeostasis in my body and mind. Adaptogens changed me from the inside, and I want the world to experience the same healing.
Adaptogens are part of most recipes I develop for the menus I create for restaurants and cafes - I'll spice up a biscuit with reishi, top a "crab" cake with artichoke croquettes with a chaga crust, or enhance a flourless brownie with ashwagandha!
I trained myself in diet, lifestyle and traditional wisdom.
What are your current and upcoming projects?
Currently, Claire Sharryn Roberto Consulting - my restaurant consulting company - is in a phase of massive growth. We have recently consulted, created, and opened wellness-focused restaurants in Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, and Qatar. This rapid expansion of the consulting branch has made us the fastest-growing wellness-focused restaurant consulting firm in the region, and I am very proud of that.
Simultaneously, I am working on:
1. Two new restaurants in Kuwait, one in Riyadh, and one in Abu Dhabi.
2. My recipe app, which is in the final stages of completion.
3. Alchemize, which is currently being finalized for a launch in the last quarter of 2023.
What do you like about Holidermie's vision and philosophy?
Holidermie's philosophy of holistic beauty resonates with me because it aligns with my belief that true beauty comes from taking care of oneself from the inside out.
I appreciate the brand's emphasis on natural and organic ingredients, as well as their commitment to being environmentally-friendly, vegan, and cruelty-free. Holidermie's dedication to personalized skincare solutions that support the body's natural processes is something that aligns with my own core values.
Is there a particular product you love?
I absolutely LOVE the Holidermie rose quartz gua-sha for the face! The relaxation it provides is simply incredible...
I am also amazed by the energizing adaptogenic dietary supplement: its combination of powerful adaptogenic plants is perfect for reducing stress and contributing to physical and mental well-being.