If you’ve been keeping tabs on the health world – and we can assume you have been, if you’re here with us now – then we can bet you know a little bit about Ella Mills. Better known as Deliciously Ella, this wellness goddess is one of the best-known voices in healthy eating and living. After years of feeling unwell and a diagnosis of Postural Tachycardia Syndrome back in 2011, Ella decided to take her health into her own hands. She switched to a plant-based diet and recorded her journey, as well as her delicious recipes, on her blog, Deliciously Ella. We were lucky enough to sit down with this glowing beauty and ask a few questions that have been on our mind. Keep reading to find out about her views on “clean eating,” her date night go -tos and her early morning phone scrolling habit.
We love your unique perspective on eating well and wellness in general. It’s a very inclusive, non-prescriptive mentality. Can you tell us how you came to this approach?
I just found that a more inclusive approach made me happiest and was the most appealing to my friends and family. I love eating and I love cooking – flavour and enjoyment are so important in any meal and I didn’t feel that those values should have to be compromised if you wanted to eat well. I was never interesting in eating well growing up but after getting very ill with a condition that impaired the functioning of my autonomic nervous system I started to look at how I could support my body, as medication wasn’t working as well as I would have like, and I wanted to continue to enjoy every bite!
And how would you describe your eating style?
All our recipes are plant-based and focus on celebrating fruit, veg and natural foods but they’re designed to be adapted and added onto so that they can work for you and your lifestyle. I like each recipe to be easy too, simplicity is really important.
Many are shying away from the label “clean eating” as it can villainize the way others are eating. How do you feel about this?
I’ve never been a massive fan of it, it feels quite restrictive which I think is off-putting. Everyone needs to find their own balance and their own approach, there’s never a one size fits all and it’s really important to remember that. You should never feel guilty for what you eat, no matter what it is.
We know you have a vibrant, varied diet (thanks to Instagram keeping us up to date!), but could you tell us what a typical day of eating looks like for you?
I don’t really have one, it changes day to day. I like bircher muesli with coconut milk, banana and peanut butter for breakfast or a green smoothie with frozen banana, spinach, blueberries, kale, almond butter and oat milk. For lunch it’s whatever we’re serving in the office that day, we all eat together – often it’s something from the menu in our deli, I love the lentil apricot dahl and that Yellow Thai Curry. I try to make time to cook dinner each day, sometimes it’s a speedy stir-fry with sesame and tahini, other days it’s a Mexican style sweet potato and black bean stew or curry. I love eating out too, trying new restaurants and cuisines, Indian is my go-to, they make such good veggie food.
And what’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
Check my phone! Then I try to get to yoga from 6.30-7.30, it really clears my head and gets me into the best space for the day.
Whenever we’re in London, we always hit up the Deliciously Ella Deli. Do you have any other favourite healthy hotspots in London or abroad?
I haven’t spent much time in Amsterdam sadly, although I’d always go to The Cold Pressed Juicery! I was in New York a few months ago and loved ABCv, I had the best brunch there. I love LA for food, it’s the best place for vegan food I think – Crossroads is my favourite spot.
Juices and smoothies are the name of the game here at The Cold Pressed Juicery. What are your favourite juices and smoothies to whip up at home or buy on the run?
I like a simple green smoothie, I make normally make either a mix with our organic, deep greens cold pressed juice blended with frozen banana, almond butter and spinach; the one I mentioned for breakfast above or a sweet berry one with mixed frozen berries, frozen mango, coconut milk and lots of ice.
What’s the best meal to cook for a date night with Matt?
We go out a lot for date night, it’s the best way to get us off our computers and stopping talking about work! We love Japanese, Indian and Middle Eastern food.
Do you have any great blogs or Instagram accounts – other than Deliciously Ella or The Cold Pressed Juicery, of course – that we should follow?
Honestly there are so many, I think I follow over 900 accounts now – too many good ones to choose from!
How do you define wellness?
Doing things that make you feel your best and your happiest. What those things are will change on a day to day, week by week and year to year basis and that’s ok.
One last piece of advice?
Optimism makes the world a much better place. It’s always so much easier to focus on the negatives rather than the positives, but when you focus on the positives life becomes so much more enjoyable, even during really challenging times.