My Journey: How I found a Naturally Healthy Lifestyle.
HELLO EVERYONE! MY NAME IS LAURA MARQUIS. I LOVE ANYTHING RELATED TO FITNESS & HEALTH! I AM ALSO A NATIONALLY CERTIFIED MASSAGE THERAPIST AND THERAPEUTIC PILATES INSTRUCTOR. IN 2009, I OPENED UP MY VERY OWN FITNESS STUDIO, MARQUIS PILATES & FITNESS IN SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA. SINCE THEN, MY LIFE HAS BEEN ALL ABOUT HELPING MY CLIENTS LIVE A TRULY HEALTHY LIFESTYLE, INSIDE AND OUT!
My interest in desserts started when I was a little girl. I spent countless hours playing in the kitchen with my mom as she made wedding cakes and delicious homemade desserts. I learned the importance of quality in homemade desserts and that there is nothing more rewarding than making something that puts a smile on everyone’s face… Unfortunately, I also spent a large amount of my childhood feeling sick, tired and moody...
. . . TWENTY YEARS AGO NO ONE WAS TALKING ABOUT GLUTEN OR LACTOSE INTOLERANCE, ESPECIALLY NOT IN MY TINY LITTLE TOWN OF 150 PEOPLE.
Every time my mom would bake, she would give me and my sisters the extra cake and bags of frosting to play with and enjoy. Soon after, my sisters would run outside to play, energized by their sugar high, but never me. I always felt so sick that I had to go lie down and take a nap, hoping to the feel better when I woke up. The first time I remember getting physically sick from unhealthy food, I was only 8 years old. It was only one piece of pizza, but my body just couldn’t handle it. My mom tried really hard to understand why all of my other sisters could eat “regular” foods but I couldn’t, with no success. This continued to happen more and more with a lot of different foods, but it was really hard to pinpoint which foods caused it…to this day I am still unable to eat pizza.
Fast-forward to my twenties, I opened Marquis Pilates & Fitness and was loving life. However, I was still feeling sick to my stomach and lethargic every time I ate foods considered “healthy,” like sandwiches, cereal, and yogurt. I didn’t understand what was causing it.
Finally, I went to a specialist to figure out what was going on with me, and that was when I found out that I was not only lactose intolerant, but also gluten intolerant! This rocked my world! What in the world was I going to eat now? I was scared. Was I going to have to eat like a rabbit from now on? Through trial & error and a lot of research, I began to focus my diet around vegetables and lean proteins and started to feel much better, but the hardest part of my diet restrictions was dining out with friends. When I would request the necessary meal modifications at restaurants, my friends would make comments like, “Laura, a bite of dessert won’t make you fat,” or “One crouton won’t kill you.” They didn’t understand that I was making the choices necessary to avoid making myself sick and it left me feeling like an outsider.
It took me about a year and a lot of support from my husband to finally get comfortable with other people’s reactions to how I ate. After this hurdle, the only thing I really struggled with was finding gluten and dairy-free dessert options that I could enjoy. I was spoiled with my mom’s delicious desserts and quickly discovered most of the options available taste horrible, and absolutely none of them tasted like the homemade desserts from my childhood. Soon, my idea of dessert became simply fruit or frozen fruit blended into a sorbet. I accepted this because feeling good and healthy was definitely worth sacrificing dessert. If it hadn’t been for one of my awesome clients introducing me to my very first raw dessert, I would probably still think this way. She made me an amazing, rich and delicious raw fudge brownie. I immediately asked for the recipe and made it for myself that night. I couldn’t believe how easy it was to make! Even better, my body could process everything in it! I would never feel deprived again!
So I made it my mission to share this joy with everyone I know. Within a year, I was making raw desserts for clients and friends who ate “normal food” and nobody could tell the difference! People enjoyed them not only because they were good for a “healthy dessert,” but because they were truly delicious. Mission accomplished!
I have put my heart into every recipe that I am putting into my new cookbook, as well as my website. I can confidently say that you will enjoy these desserts without feeling guilty or sick afterward. So join me, and let’s have our cake and eat it too!
Ps. Click here to watch my Tedx Talk:Confessions of a Sugar Addict in a Sugar-Laden World