Blue Zones: How to live to be a 100

Dan Buettner did a very interesting research on how to live a healthy and long life. He found out there are a few areas that he calls 'blue zones', where people live to be over a hundred years old in a measurably better way! Wow, who doesn't want that? Since my sweet grandmother lived to be 98 and I myself am half Costarican (one of the blue zones) I had hoped I was blessed with great genes that made me set for an awesome 100+ life. But...genes are only about 10% responsibe! So....what's the secret of the 'blue zoners'?

1. They move naturally

None of the people he interviewed went to the gym. None! Instead, their lives were naturally filled with movement. They gardened, worked on a farm, or walked to the vineyard down the mountain every day. Also, when they did 'exercise', it was only for fun. Whether it was dancing, playing with the kids, sailing or playing soccer, they purely did it out of enjoyment.

2. They have the 'right' outlook

Work to live, instead of living to work. Also, one of the most important things he found was a strong sense of purpose, having a reason to get out of bed each day and that makes you truly enthousiastic. And...no matter how busy the day is, always have at least one moment of peace and relaxation every day!

3. They eat wisely

Their diets were mainly plant-based, so a lot of vegetables and fruit were consumed. Meat and processed food were an exception! Moderation seemed to be a key word, many of them ate about 80% of what they initially wanted to eat. We have a saying that goes: the eyes are bigger than the stomach, which is so true! Instead of piling up the food on their plate, they took a little less. It takes a little while for the brain to realize the stomach is full, so I personally thought this was a very good idea. But don't think these ladies and gents were depriving themselves of some fun! A couple of glasses of red wine per day turned out be very common.

4. They belong to the 'right' tribe

A strong circle of family and friends, and a sense of belonging proved to be very critical. Often, the 100+ people lived with their children and grandchildren. It kept them young and gave them a sense of importance. Giving life advice to a grandchild is a win-win situation, good for everybody. For some guidance of their own, they turned to a higher power. They all had strong religious or spiritual belief system that made them resilient and grateful. Interesting stuff, right?

Watch the Ted talk video by Dan Buettner:

[youtube id="I-jk9ni4XWk" align="center"]

 

To buy the book on Blue Zones by Dan Buettner on Amazon click HERE.

And for more information:

http://www.bluezones.com

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dan_Buettner

XOXO Maruja


A BEAUTIFUL ALKALINE BODY

Did you know that you can actually make your body more beautiful, simply by becoming more ‘alkaline’? Your body has a delicate pH balancing system in which it works to keep equilibrium & stop your body fluids from becoming more ‘acid’ or if needed, too alkaline. I’m going to focus on the alkalising bit in this article as we very rarely get ‘too alkaline’ in our modern day, fast paced, un-natural lives!

Think of it this way…

ALKALINE = Improved health, extra energy, enhanced beauty, toned & more supple body, glowing skin, sparkling eyes, lustrous hair, high libido, healthy nails, faster wound/injury healing, flexibility, strengthened immunity, feeling of lightness & balance within the body, mood enhancing/positive mind.

ACID = Lethargy, sickness prone, cellulite, bad breath, slow healing, sagging skin, bloodshot eyes, dark circles, falling hair, acne, dandruff, low libido, tight muscles, painful joints, aches/pains, headaches, brittle nails, feeling of heaviness, clumsiness, depression/negative mind.

Without going into extensive scientific details here on pH know (Antoniette HELP! lol)... I'm pretty sure the term 'pH' refers to the alkalinity or acidity of water solutions. Ie: your blood & body fluids, but can refer to the watery + mineral content of anything from soil to water to plants etc. There are wonderful books, charts & informative material on the web you can discover to educate yourself on saliva & urinary pH testing, which can be a highly beneficial monitoring system. This said I usually gauge my 'alkalinity' by the way I feel!

Foods that promote Alkalinity

Raw foods especially vegetables & green foods, spring water, almost all fruits, raw milks & cheeses, cultured foods such as sauerkraut (recipe to come!), kefir, kombucha & others. Lightly cooked vege’s & broths. Freshly pressed fruit & vegetable juices, wheatgrass juice, green drinks & smoothies. Fatty fish. Almonds. Sufficient rest. Yoga. Moderation. Light stress free exercise which is enjoyable. Sunlight, hydrotherapy & fresh country air. The sea. Love, laughter & peace of mind.

Of course, there are more but these are some of the big ones you want to make sure you’re doing or not doing!

Things that contribute to Acidity

Denatured foods such as white sugar, white breads/biscuits/pastries, red meats, soft drinks, smoking, late nights, excessive technology, fluoridated water, overwork, city air, excessiveness, coffee/tea, antibiotics, preservatives/flavourings/colourings, dried fruits, high protein foods (even natural foods, eat moderately), high intensity exercise or labour, lack of sunlight & stress.

alkaline-food-chart

Ways to create an Alkaline body

More ways to create an alkaline body would be to indulge in salt glows (scrub moistened skin all over warm body vigorously with sea salt until pink, rinse, towel dry), dancing in the rain, nature walks by the sea or rainforest, loving the dog/horse/budgie or people in your life, deep breathing, walking barefoot on dewy grass, aromatherapy treatments/massage.

MG_7727

Another thought

Don’t you find it interesting to think that the foods which are most beneficial to our health/vitality & wellbeing are the foods which grow in the most abundance & require little or no preparation to enjoy? I’m meaning fruits & vegetables as opposed to meat (needing much land for grazing & spoils easily), grain/nuts/seeds (more difficult to process than fruits & vegetables) etc. Herbs grow in astonishing abundance & almost without cultivation! Herbs are something which I feel we should be consuming more of daily. Also greens, fruits of all kinds, vegetables, grasses/sprouts, & milky grains (such as fresh corn on the cob)…These foods are readily accessible & perfect alkaline nutrition. Even an avocado is rich in valuable nutrients, good fats & is beautiful in alkalinity. These are foods that promote beauty, health & wellbeing in the way we look, think & feel. They fit into our hands perfectly, our mouths & even look like our body systems, organs & sometimes even diseases (now that’s freaky! natures food designed for humans). There's really so much to discover on this subject of alkalising... The effects upon our bodies is immense so do look into it further if you are passionate about health & especially, healing.

MG_7336

Probably the best thing about alkalising is, YES, we will look more gorgeous, there’s no doubt about that whatsoever. It works, making you more beautiful with every positive choice you make. But to me, what's even better than the other best part about alkalising, is in the way makes me feel. AMAZING, fresh, youthful & buzzing with ideas. Every. Single. Day.

LOVE & CHOCOLATE (PS. I'm very very busy with my book, so if I don't write for a while, extra LOVEEE! XXX) Abigail


healthy living is easy: 5 tips

Healthy Living quoteA healthy living is not difficult! As long as you know a few simple rules to live by:

Whatever you put in your body or on your body makes you the way you are, and makes you feel the way you feel.

1. Your diet should consist of mostly fruits, vegetables,beans, grains & seeds, and from local suppliers when possible. (yes, that means focus on your vegetables as the main item in your breakfast, lunch or dinner, not as a side dish.) Buy your produce as much organic as possible. If you think that organic is too expensive, choose the fruits & vegetables that have the thinnest skin (and will probably absorb the pesticides the most) or are known to have the largest amount of pesticides on them organic, and the others non-organic. This way you save 50% or more of your daily chemicals-intake. (you can check the list of fruits and vegetables that are considered the "dirty dozen" by the Enviromental Group, keep checking this list as it changes a lot. And follow this Group as they have a lot of interesting information for a healthy living for you and your family). Local food is just fresher and has less carbon foot print due to less travel.

healthy living quote

2. Eat less meat and fish. And if you do, eat organic meat, and eat sustainable fish with a low mercury level. I am not saying never eat it (although for some people it would be better for their health) But there are some serious environmental problems going on with meat production and fisheries. But make sure you replace with vegetable proteins if you decide to avoid meat and fish at all. Us beings need protein to live. There are many great vegetarian proteins on the market like hemp, brown rice, pea, alfalfa, spirulina, soy to name a few. Pick the one you like the best.

Meat issues: bad living conditions cattle, too much use of growth hormones and medication.

Fish issues: Overfishing (taking all marine life out of one spot at once by using big nets with a lot of by catch), fish farming where fish get additives in their diet (like corn and other things they don't really eat)  + too much metal & plastic pollution which the fish eat, like mercury. Remember: the bigger the fish, the higher their mercury levels probably are.

 Too much animal protein is considered to be bad for cardiovascular & heart health, as well as cholesterol, and other unpleasant illnesses. It does not hurt to eat it a little less, and the money you save with that, use to buy organic meat and/or other animal products. And on top of that, meat production has a huge carbon foot print compared to the production of organic vegetable crops. So it is better for you, and for the environment.

3. Remove chemicals from your life. Be conscious of what you put on and in your body! My rule:  Read. What. you. put. in. and. on. your. body! All those amazing make up and skincare products like shampoos and deodorants,  and vitamins you see on the shelves of your supermarkets, drugstore or pharmacies... but that it is for sale there doesn't mean it is that good for you in the long run. Meaning: it might make you look and feel great now, but the ingredients maybe can harm you later on. Read labels and ingredients on the back. A lot of names you can't pronounce and chemicals means: a lot of bad stuff in or on your body. Use medication and vitamins only when your doctor told you to do so, and use organic only products on your body. Because remember: what you put on your face or body can be absorbed by the skin and get into your bloodstream and organs. So be wise what you put on it. This also counts for clothing. These days a lot of clothing and shoes are made with many chemicals, and if it can get on your skin, it can get in your skin.  I also use filtered my water to avoid as many chemicals in my life.

I buy as much as possible organic shampoos, skincare, deodorants, skincare, makeup, food, clothing, water to avoid unwanted toxins and chemicals in my life.

4. Consume less, live more: choose to buy products you really need only. It is better for the environment and for your wallet. If you want to have more, it costs more and you have more responsibilities and worries. But if you don't buy stuff, and only buy quality products if you need to, you will likely be exposed to less chemicals (see above why that is so important), own something that lasts longer,  but also you will have more time to spend with loved ones!

Consume less live more

And try to find vintage and antique stuff. It is made better usually and already has proven itself.

5. Be fit. Don't sit behind a computer all day! Get up and walk, and exercise daily. Relax and enjoy. We don't believe in intense strenuous exercise, but daily moderate exercise like walking, biking, running, yoga, fitness, pilates all work! I even like jumping on a trampoline. The places in the World where people live the longest, the so-called "Blue Zones" are all areas where people are moving all day, and mostly just around the house doing daily tasks like cleaning, cooking and growing food to eat. It doesn't need to be intense, just move your body!

Healthy living is no trend, it is a way of life.

Love Lonneke


Breakfast: babyfood grows up!

When I was young I always loved a "fruithapje". A dish made out of fruits and other delicious things for breakfast or as a snack.

Organice Your Life team member Dirk Verest and I played with the ingredients and came up with the following modern version of my preferred baby food!

Remember: the eye wants something too, so think of a fun way to display your food, like in a recycled glass jar! Dirk used a 400ml jar. Which he thought was the right size for the right amount of food for a full feeling during the rest of the morning.

Breakfast jar

Shopping list for 1:  (buy organic and local whenever possible)

- organic (Greek) yoghurt

-  1 Apple

-  1 Kiwi

- 1 Mango

- 1 Grapefruit

- About 2 tablespoons of Teff. a type of grain from Africa that is healthy & gluten free, which is Dirk's favorite grain, and which one spoon helps to keep the shredded fruits form a cohesive mass. (It has to soak up the fruitjuices) You can also try it without Teff, or try another dry breakfast product like oatmeal, Brinta, or Liga, but from our experience this works the best.

- handful of your preferred muesli.

How to make:

Add layers of yoghurt, muesli & shaved fruits in a jar.

This one has layers of:

fruits: * Shaved organic apple & mango, * Cut Kiwis in cubes between. *Mixed with Teff for fibers and essential minerals, * Fresh squeezed grapefruit juice.

Yoghurt: Greek organic yoghurt.

Crunch: organic crunchy muesli.

Costs: Less than a few dollars per person, maybe even less. It all depends on what fruits you put in that make the price go up. The more local and in season fruits you buy, the cheaper it is! Everything is for sale at a regular supermarket, the teff is only available in specialized organic food stores or for sale online.

breakfast jar 2

Enjoy!

Love, Lonneke 

 


SUMMER IN OZ

What's your favourite season? Are you obsessed with Winter coats, layering and snuggly fireplaces? I must say the feeling of jumping into the car turning on the heater full blast whilst drinking copious amounts of green tea on the way home from a Winter surf is one of my favourite cold weather moments. So invigorating!

I don't know if it's because of my Portuguese heritage but I do utterly obsess over Summer! Absolutely. I love Spring too - as it heralds the onset of warmer days, exotic fruits galore and fresh flowers :)

Native cherry

Fruit picking besties

Exfoliation at its best!
Exfoliation at its best!

shadow love

Our tree in Summer
Our tree in Summer

Paradise

Above are a few random i-pics by me - you may have seen some on Instagram already.

It's Winter season down under, but wherever you are it's important to feel warm for healing, beauty, and life. Some of my favourite tips to stay warm and energised are:

*Cold showers - yes even in Winter (best taken after a brisk walk or some form or activity, and with warm clothes ready to put straight on) boost the immune system and strengthens will power, mind and heart. Keeps you young and toned too!

*Vigorous Exercise

*Sunbaths - when its out, strip off & lay in it!

*Raw foods - even if its just a fresh juice, or a carrot before lunch

*Spices such as Cayenne, Ginger, Garlic

*Chocolate :) always makes me feel warm inside!

Love Abigail xxx


Polite Running

Here's something fun to do while running: as soon as you get to more deserted spots (parks, forest, little roads etc) say hello to everyone. It is so much fun, most city people just do not expect a hello. Or a smile, or a nod. Feeling good? Give them a smile, hello and a nod!

polite running explained

Don't worry that you have weird red spots in your face, you might have a slipstream smelling of sweat, give a smile! Lookin' purple, out of breath? Say hello! Yes, you might terrify some people (especially the ones purposely avoiding eye contact as to not get into a strange stare with a stranger) but mostly, you get a happy 'hello' back. Or a 'hi'. I even received a 'what'up' today.

Polite running. It should be an Olympic sport.

 

Marius was a contributor for Organice Your Life between the years 2011-2012

 This article was first published by Marius Hordijk on OrganiceYourLife.com on December 29th 2012. Updated in 2019.


Feng Shui Your Desk

I came across this article about Feng Shui – How to organize your desk so Feng Shui can start to work its magic. It is quite simple to understand, so stay with me and read on!

How to Feng Shui Your Desk

Imagine you are looking at your working desk from the above. Now divide it in 3x3 board ( it call BAGUA in Feng Shui world).

 MONEY  FAME  ROMANCE
 FAMILY
& SECURITY
 HEALTH  CREATIVITY
 KNOWLEDGE  CAREER  HELPFUL PEOPLE
& TRAVEL

Sit at your desk, and start at the left side. This is KNOWLEDGE area. Its ideal area to store your reference books, dictionary, manuals, and anything that you often reach while working.

If you have a bookcase or a counter to the left of your desk, this could be perfect place for the symbols of FAMILY. You can put the family photos and SECURITY symbols.

The back left corner of your desk represents MONEY. Make sure to keep this corner clean, dust free and uncluttered. Also, place some pictures of what you would like to do in the future.

At the back center of your desk is FAME area. Display awards, diplomas, certificates and achievements. Add red color to this area, to draw attention.

At the right corner of your desk is a ROMANCE. Place the photos of your sweetie or symbols of love.

At the right corner is your CREATIVITY. Be sure to keep symbols of what you do that’s original, as well as tools that you use for your work. This area should be as creative and original as possible. Place your child drawings here!

At your immediate and front right it’s the HELPFUL PEOPLE & TRAVEL area. Place your address book and phone numbers here, as well as travel related items and pictures.

At the center of your desk is the HEALTH.  If you want a healthy career, your work area should be clean and “happy looking”. Add some yellow color in here!

Finally, your chair represents CAREER. Keep your chair nice and clean, Always vacuum around it and keep it polish.

Good luck!

LOVE, VAL


For the Love of Food, Fashion and OYL

I love good food!! It is my no 1 passion.

I also love learning about the human body, health/healing and wellness is a lifelong fascination of mine...and if you haven't guessed it - I love FASHION. I love this industry with all the gorgeous artistic minded people who come together to create absolute genius. I love models! Models are beautiful people yes, but they are also very intelligent and at times vulnerable, real people with real hearts which can be broken! I love life. I love making life a celebration daily. Don't you? Isn't it a wonderful thing that you and I have the power to choose health today? To choose delicious, vibrant, life giving foods? 

One of my favourite quotes in my new book MODEL CHOCOLATE is:

"Enchant, stay beautiful and graceful, but do this, eat well. Bring the same consideration to the preparation of your food as you devote to your appearance. Let your dinner be a poem, like your dress." 'Letters to Emily' Charles Pierre Monselet French journalist and author. (1825-1888) 

I can't wait to share with you how easy it is to make your own delicious life giving foods which in turn give you more energy, while making you feel more inclined smile and be beautiful on the outside! When you take care of your body from the inside, even when it comes to treating yourself with lavish desserts, you feel so wonderful that it shows. Good luck!

Love and chocolate xxx Abigail

MODEL CHOCOLATE  is a superfood chocolate book jam packed with over 70 sugar free, dairy free, gluten free recipes for every occasion to be made in minutes. No artificial sweeteners or processed foods, just lots of real cacao love! Eco fashions, models, and art makes this revolutionary cookbook unique, cutting edge and visually inspiring and uplifting. The book is also available for instantaneous download here.

Image above of Abigail from the book MODEL CHOCOLATE. Photographer - Damien Nikora, stylist - Tamzen Holland Chalmers, make up - Ashlea Penfold, creative director Sarah Chambers.


I use the Vitality & Energy Mask for a radiant skin

SKIN CARE FOR MEN

As the days are getting colder (well, here in the Netherlands) I have to be extra careful with my skin. Not every man likes to put some effort in his "beauty" skin care for men regime (most men only wash their faces with water and that's it), but I'm a fanatic skin care user for many years now. I don't mind getting older (I'm 33 right now), but with my healthy lifestyle and the help of some natural products I can reduce the process a little bit.

As you know I don't drink any alcohol for almost a year anymore (read: Choose Your Juice), and I can see the effect on my skin! It looks healthier than ever before!

Every morning I use some natural face products for men. Here are the steps in pictures:

Step 1:

Picture 1: my morning face, Picture 2: Intensive cleaning with scrub gel
Picture 1: my morning face, Picture 2: Intensive cleaning with scrub gel

You can scrub your face a few times a week. Always apply it on a moisty face (and neck). Wash it away with lots of hot water.

Step 2:

Gentle facial cleanser by Rituals
Gentle facial cleanser by Rituals

Luxury Face Treat by Rituals

 

I use the Vitality & Energy Mask for a radiant skin
I use the Vitality & Energy Mask for a radiant skin

 

You can make funny faces while waiting (10 - 15 minutes)
You can make funny faces while waiting (10 - 15 minutes)

Wash it away with lots of hot water. You can use a mask one or two times a week.

Step 4:

FACE nr 3: Ultra moistering face lotion by Rituals
FACE nr 3: Ultra moistering face lotion by Rituals
Finishing touch! I use this ultra moisturising face lotion every day!
Finishing touch! I use this ultra moisturising face lotion every day!

After this skin care you are awake and ready to start your day!

Ready to go with my fresh and healthy skin!
Ready to go with my fresh and healthy skin!

I also protect my hands with this lovely lotion:

Hand cream by FACE STOCKHOLM
Hand cream by FACE STOCKHOLM

This rich, concentrated hand cream leaves hands delicately scented, while locking in the moisture that is vital for the maintenance of healthy, hydrated hands. And it smells sooo good!

I hope all the men are inspired to take care of their skin! And if you have other tips: SHARE!

Ps: VALENTINA also shared her beauty skin secrets (for women and men) a few months ago! You can read it HERE!

Good luck!
Good luck!

 


IMG model prep Lonneke

IMG Model Talk 2012

In August 2012 I spoke at the IMG model Prep 2012, an event organized by IMG models for their young models who will experience New York Fashion Week for the first time. The past years this event has become a solid part of preparation for Fashion Week by IMG, with great speakers, healthy food, nice drinks, and great goodiebags for all the models!

People speaking at the IMG model Prep

* Nian Fish – Producer

* James Scully – Casting Director

* Betsey Selman- Babinecz – Board Certified Clinical Social Worker.

* Lonneke Engel - IMG Model and Certified Health Counselor

*Anne-Marie van Dijk & Amanda Nicole Gilpin – CLEANSE

* Jessica Stam – CFDA Health Initiative Ambassador

Antoniette Costa, who also contributes to Organice Your Life®, also came to watch me speak. Coincidentally me, Antoniette & Jessica Stam went to Jimmy Fallon and Dinner with a friend of ours just last week!

Lonneke, Jessica, Jackie, Antoniette
Lonneke, Jessica, Jackie, Antoniette

IMG Model Prep booklet

they also make a cute booklet for everyone each year with my tips in it, and information for everyone about the people speaking, but also on health stores, doctors, and other important phone numbers.

IMG Model Prep book 2012
IMG Model Prep book 2012

I have done this now I think 4 times in a row, and I really enjoy doing this!

READ MORE: IMG Model Prep 2011

Models listening at IMG model prep 2012
Models listening at IMG model prep 2012

MY IMG model talk 2012

My focus was that the girls should see themselves as a business women, and that they should take care of their bodies as businesses. The better the organize their lives, the more chance they have to have a successful, long lasting career. The most successful girls in this industry, like Gisele & Heidi Klum, are true business women. While you can never know what fashion designers and casting directors want that season (meaning: if you will be picked or not) You can do your part by making sure you are taking care of all the things you do have a say in. Like eating healthy, and being prepared by bringing healthy foods with you. If you don’t eat (cause you think that will help you stay in shape during fashion week) think again: nobody is going to book the girl who looks tired and has no energy. Also important: Make sure you have all the things with you at shows and castings that you need, like a phone charger. Being prepared is key. Jessica Stam, who spoke as well, put emphasis on being on time. And David Cunningham, who initiated these meetings years ago, also said: “If you get 10 shows or not one, it does not matter. We. Don’t. Care.” That’s so nice about IMG models, they think longterm. Any girl that was present yesterday, can depend on the trust of their agents even beyond fashion week. And that they can call them throughout Fashion Week, and anytime, with anything. If they are waiting too long for a casting, or they have to see a doctor, the agents are there for them, and that is nice to know! I wished them a lot of luck in their career!

READ MORE: IMG open to all

Goodie bags

At the end, all models got a personalized goodie bag. and I got one too as a Thank You! What was in it? So many awesome things!

IMG goodie bag
IMG goodie bag!

My favorite was the black skinny Rag & Bone jeans in my size!

Other things: Uggs, Converse All-Stars, Mavi Jeans, Makeup by Covergirl & Lancome, Zumba fitness DVD's, Reebok Easytone top and pants, BR Guest gift card, Calvin Klein nude thong (u need to wear nude underwear as a model going to do shows and castings). This was a very valuable goodie bag!

IMG model prep 2012
Jessica Stam speaking at IMG model prep 2012

Afterwards a few models came to me and thanked me for speaking. And that they felt so much better and less scared about Fashion Week. And that to me is the biggest reward of doing these speaking engagements. Looking forward to more in the future!

Follow IMG Models and New York Fashion Week on Twitter!

Love, Lonneke


Go for Gold part 2

Now the London 2012 Olympics are over, we have enjoyed over 2 weeks of top sports. We have celebrated the many medals that have been won by hundreds of athletes, and we have honored them in their home countries and cities they come from.

The Dutch Olympic athletes are honored by thousands of fans upon arrival home
The Dutch Olympic athletes are honored by thousands of fans upon arrival home

Every 4 years the Olympic Games are held, this year it was the 30th time. They originated in Greece. In the past years, London has had the Olympics 3 times (one time was cancelled because of World War 2). I wonder when New York can host it... they lost from London this time, but I am sure they will get it at some point!

Sports bring people together. Athletes, but also the people who cheer for them. Countries come together. The world comes together. People get motivated. Their hearts are full of joy and adrenaline. Kids get inspired and might start practicing a sport instead of watching TV after school. If you like the hectic and crazy times of the Olympics or not one thing is for sure: It will make a lot of people healthier. Because when you just work out just a little bit, or a little bit more, it will make you feel better. It will make your blood circulation better, therefore your toxins are released better and you are getting healthier every step of the way.

I remember Matthew McConoughey said once: "break a sweat a day, it does not matter what you do as long as you do something each day" And that quote always stuck in my mind.

So: EVERY TIME YOU EXCERCISE AND BREAK A SWEAT YOU ARE IMPROVING YOUR HEALTH. Go for it!

Next up: the London 2012 Paralympics. These athletes have worked just as hard as their Olympic colleagues, but they also had to overcome a disability. I think all athletes, Olympic & Paralympic, are true inspirations.

London Paralympics Equestrian ad
London Paralympics Equestrian ad
London Paralympics ad
London Paralympics ad

There is one athlete who will actually compete both in the Olympics AND Paralympics at London 2012.  It is Oscar Pistorius from South Africa, the "Blade Runner".  I hope to interview him sometime and find out his inspiration and story... it is amazing that science gave him 2 artificial "legs" so he could not only walk, but actually run and compete with the best athletes in the world. I love science that improves people's lives!

Oscar Pistorius
Oscar Pistorius, picture from his Wikipedia page.

I am looking forward to these Paralympic Games as well, will you watch? August 29th to September 9th we can!

Love, Lonneke


Carol 3

Introducing: top model Carol Fontaneti

I worked with Carol on a job for Fay, an Italian clothing brand a few years ago. We reconnected years later when I found out she is also very much into health and food. She will likely start to become a contributor on OYL and share her modeling experiences and her favorite beauty and food tips. Here is a little glimpse into the life of Carol:

Carol 1
Carol Fontaneti

Hello guys!

My name is Carol Fontaneti I'm brasilian and I've been modeling for about 10 years. I started when I was 17, what makes me 26 years old now. I am living in NYC, but I've lived all arround the world in places like Paris, Milan, Hamburg, Tokyo, Barcelona...
From age seventeen till the late eighteens, I've tried to handle both worlds : being a student and a professional model. I finished high school and started studing Advertising focused on Marketing, but I couldn't carry it for longer than a year... at that time I was living in the countryside an hour and a half away from Sao Paulo, and it was so time consuming  going after classes for castings or shoots in the city. After finishing one year of four - I quit studing to focus only on the modeling careear. Me and my family went back to the city I was born, and I started to make really good campaings for Brasilian brands until the day an agency from NY saw me and signed me in. I was just a little lost girl from a big city, 18 years old that couldn't speack a single world of English... I know it doesn't sound that bad comparing to other girls that came at youger ages from the middle of nowhere places... But I felt pretty lost.

Lonneke & Carol for Fay
Lonneke & Carol for Fay

Lonneke & Carol for Fay 2

Lucky me, I always had my families support, which made me strong enough to keep on track and slowly I was getting in touch with my truth self and learning about me and what I wanted for my life.

Carol 2

So here I am today to talk about what is my passion in life for!
First of all, as I grew up in a BIG , busy city called Sao Paulo as I said before and my childhood had a lack of contact with nature and freedom. Growing up surrounded by buildings and car horns, I did not have the chance to have a pet or anything , also my Mom used to say she would be probably the one taking care of , cause me and my brother were too lazy to do so ourselves...
So as soon as I could, I adopted my very first pet! All the accumulated love and care from all these years, is now on this little fellow  :) My dear NINIS. ( he is passing in front of the computer back and forth right at this moment to catch my attention )

When it comes to passion I must say the biggest one I have is for FOOD, no doubt. I started to care about food, and acknowledging this is the most important tool for a healthy life when I started modeling, but not because of it. I want to stay healthy for life, not only because I'm a model. I always have been living this healthy life not smoking or drinking, I only like to have a glass of wine once in a while and champagne for special occasions, so for me it is not that hard.
Of course I have my flaws ... but I push myself to don't get lazy about exercising and making my own food at home. Of that last thing, I can give all the credits to my boyfriend, cause he loves homemade cuisine and we share the dream to have a restaurant in the south of Brasil - where we want to retire from the modeling career.

Meanwhile we stablished a routine of excercises and it really helps when you have someone to go to the gym with together. So after we go for a run , we  eat a good lunch, searching for the right way to prepare plates we most love only adding or subtracting ingredients depending on our needs.

To finished talking about passions, I get inspired a lot from the arts, I have a very artistic background since my mom used to paint and draw all the time when I was little, I got this expressing myself artistically sense of need , and first of all it came out as writing journals and little poems and it grew to writing blogs or just littles phrases to myself that I never get to show anyone.
I've accumulated journals since the age of 15 till my 23 and it always felt confortable do it when I was by myself traveling or living on my own away from my loved ones.
Now very often I get this feeling that I must do something to express my feelings instead of my job , and I found this in writing.

That's pretty much it and I wil finish my text with a" cliche" but very useful phrase:

BEAUTY COMES FROM THE INSIDE OUT!!

XOXO Carol Fontaneti

Carol 3