Former Sugar Lover Becomes Healthy Living Advocate

Senior Starts Healthy Food Blog in Hopes to Inspire


Photo courtesy of Jordan Peterson

Eating her chicken salad, senior Jordan Peterson visits True Food Kitchen located in downtown Austin, TX, which uses local fresh ingredients in all of their foods.

Nithila Ilangovan, Reporter

Ice cream, donuts, cherry bars and chocolate chip cookies- the diet that was once routine for former sugar lover, senior Jordan Peterson.

While her mom tried out several paleo-like diets to become healthier, Peterson spent much of her childhood clinging to anything sweet, causing her parents to worry about her health. However, Peterson’s obsession came to a halt in 2015, when her mom offered her $500 to spend one year sugarless.

She accepted the challenge, and after one year, she successfully completed it. Peterson said that afterward, she realized money was not all that came from her sugarless year.

“I felt so much better at the end of that year, so I started to realize that maybe eating healthier could have its benefits for me,” Peterson said.

During her year without sugar, Peterson said she struggled to find delicious, yet healthy meals. Since her mother did not allow any cheat days—even on holidays—Peterson had to constantly find sugarless food options. It was not until her birthday when her mom made gluten-free lemon squares using honey and stevia, did she realize that tasty and healthy combinations of foods were possible, and maybe even favorable.

Photo courtesy of Jordan Peterson

“It was sometimes difficult during my birthday, holidays, or even hanging out with friends,” Peterson said. “So my mom made some lemon squares for my birthday during my sugar challenge and they were really good. That’s maybe when I got a little bit more interested in baking without refined sugar, because I realized you could satisfy your sweet tooth and still use sugars that wouldn’t overwhelm your body.”

Along with Stevia, Peterson began finding different sugar substitutes that would ensure taste and provide health benefits. Her long-time passion for cooking grew alongside her motivation to continue this healthy lifestyle.

“When you cook at home, you can control everything that goes into the dish, plus it is more fulfilling knowing you have been able to create something all by yourself,” Peterson said. “I bake with almost exclusively pure maple syrup, coconut sugar, stevia and monk fruit extract. They won’t spike your blood sugar too dramatically, which is harmful for your body.”

Find Peterson on Instagram @jordanshealthykitchen.

Cooking allowed Peterson to lead a healthier life, and she said that she wanted to inspire others to do the same. With the money she received from her bet, Peterson saved up to buy a professional camera and web hosting service. She started her own food blog, Instagram page and as of two weeks ago, a Youtube channel, establishing her brand, ”Jordan’s Healthy Kitchen.”  

“I decided to start a website because I wanted to have a place to archive recipes that I love, and so others can appreciate them as well,” Peterson said. “Food blogs can totally motivate other people to make changes in their lives. If you want to make a change in your eating habits, the internet is honestly the perfect place to do your research.”

Peterson said many factors can play a role in one’s health, and clarifies that being healthy is not just about losing weight. She said a healthy lifestyle can be different for every individual, as there is no single diet that leads to healthiness. 

“Eating healthy is totally different for everyone, as each person’s body is so different and has various needs,” Peterson said. “There isn’t one diet or one food that perfectly encapsulates ‘health,’ but rather it’s a mindset, a clear state of mind, and a happy body. People often think that eating healthy is just for losing weight but it’s not. It’s so sad when I hear that. A functioning and efficient body with a clear, calm mind are way more important than looking skinny. When your body is so sick and deprived of nutrients, your brain can’t function clearly or as efficiently.”

Even though Peterson mixes and matches nutritious foods for herself, she does not follow a strict diet such as paleo or vegan, as she said that she advocates for people to do what is truly best for them.

“Choose what feels best for you,” Peterson said. “Listen to your body. Your body will know what it needs and doesn’t need, and sometimes it may take an allergy test to know. I know food blogs are often where I get my recipes, so I test them out to see if they are worthwhile enough for my followers to try.”

Peterson said she wants to continue combining her interest in photography and healthy cooking to give the best for her audience. Peterson will attend Utah State University next year to major in interior design, and is sure to take her love for cooking with her. Afterward, she said that she hopes to incorporate her major into her passion for a healthy lifestyle by designing and opening her own restaurant or bakery.

“I equally love interior design and eating healthy, so maybe down the line, I can open up my own healthy bakery or even a restaurant,” Peterson said. ”It would be fun to design the architecture and the layout of the restaurant, then curate the menu myself as that would combine both of my hobbies. Austin is the perfect place for that because there are so many health and eco-conscious people in this city such as Picnik and True Food Kitchen, which are my two favorite local restaurants.”

A preview of some of her recipes: