Farming for Health Podcast #17: Chef Callie Cavanaugh

Farming for Health Podcast #17: Chef Callie Cavanaugh

When Callie Cavanaugh was just five years old, she was already whipping up “random concoctions” in the kitchen. She was drawn, in part, because her mom was a good cook and also because she found it fun. Soon, she invited friends and family into the kitchen to put on a “cooking show”—years before people could just flip on the Food Network!

When it came time for college, though, Callie chose business school. Within a year and a half, however, she knew it wasn’t what she wanted. So she transitioned into culinary school—and, from that point on, she was all in with food.

Callie studied and trained in Italy, an amazing experience that transformed her relationship with food. Before, food was all about flavor; now it was also about the experience as the Italian culture encourages people to slow down and gather at meal times. 

Another key factor in her food journey: gut problems. As an active athlete in high school, her appetite raged and then escalated in college. Besides eating her own meal, she’d finish off the plates of friends—and still be hungry. Suffering from fatigue, brain fog, and aching joints, Callie found no relief with Western doctors.

Fortunately, an Eastern functional doctor spotted a tapeworm, and she took herbs to expel it, having flu-like symptoms for the week it took to happen. She found the relief she needed but now had to deal with a gut stripped of flora.

This is what brought Callie into the world of nutrition as she worked with nutritionists and a functional doctor to deal with food sensitivities and intolerances. A two-year period of an elimination diet got her back on track and served as an impetus for the book she wrote, Eating In by Design: The Essential Guidebook to Redesign Personal & Planetary Health from Home, and the method of eating she developed: The Eat In Method. She is also the founder of NonnaEats, the private chef platform that brings people together through intimate dining experiences. 

To learn more about Callie’s experiences and insights, find out the details in episode #17 of the Farming for Health podcast: Being Present, The Eat In Method and Food as Fuel. 

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