Jasmine: Co-owner of “Anything Vegan” with her sister Marji. The dynamic duo or the “Anything Vegan Girls” as they are affectionately known are currently co-authoring their next book and manufacturing and producing their nut-free, vegan cheese O’So Cheesy- which comes in three flavors and is on track for greatness!
More about Jasmine
If her bio reads like a chapter from a book entitled “What Great Lives are Made Of” it’s because Jasmine has accomplished so much at a young age and she’s not stopping anytime soon. “…even if you don’t have everything all mapped out, just get out there and begin to live your dream and all the pieces will rise into place!” Jasmine says. Her dream of helping people with health began at the tender age of six. “I can’t explain it if I tried because I don’t really know exactly how I first began to connect the dots around how we treat our bodies and how we feel. I just remember seeing our mom come home from work very tired and I would stay up and wait for to give her a back massage. I had this inner “knowingness” that made me think that if I could help reduce my mom’s stress through massage she would feel energized and healthier. At first she was like “What are you doing? Go to bed.”But I was relentless and she knew early on that once I decided on something you could consider it done! For years afterwards she would tell the story over and over of how those massages felt so healing! I was six when I first started doing that and my passion for healing the body grew and now I heal and restore the body through food.” Jasmine recalls in a 2010 interview, for HEALTH BEAT.
Her Passion for Health and Wellness
Jasmine has worked with the most innovated companies in the food industry. Most recently she was Dean and Creative Directive of Whole Foods Market Entrepreneur University, a company extension (of WFM) that she created and pitched to Whole Foods Co-CEO Walter Robb and its 12 Regional Presidents in Austin, Texas. Her Eureka moment came when she (then working on the WFM Marketing Team as a Healthy Eating Specialist) received a company-wide email wherein CEO John Mackey called for innovative ideas from its team members. This call for innovation was no surprise since Whole Foods prides itself on innovation and thinking outside the box! But what was a surprise for Jasmine was that her innovative idea was a winner and received a $150,000 investment from three regional presidents. Although grateful, Jasmine is no stranger to falling into amazing unprecedented opportunities. In 2012 she moved from New Mexico to Northern Virginia to be closer to her sister Marji. A close friend suggested she apply to work with Whole Foods ‘Health Starts Here’ program, and she did. She was asked to prepare a dish for her interview. When the interview panel tasted her dish (Dijon Tarragon infused Shiitake mushrooms in a vegan white wine reduction atop seasoned quinoa) and learned that it was plant-based they were blown away and asked if she’d instead consider accepting a position as a Vegan Chef (a position that did not even exist before her interview) wherein she would train the other chefs at the store to prepare tasty vegan and raw dishes for the hot and cold food bars. Since Jasmine’s life motto is “I look forward to seeing what great things life is cooking-up today!”…she accepted the position. In addition to recipe development she instructed a popular monthly vegan cooking class.
A graduate of eCornell University as a Certified Plant Based Nutritionist; Jasmine has worked with Oprah’s former long-time personal Chef Art Smith’s non-profit organization, “Common Threads” teaching inner-city children who live in food deserts about different cultures from around the world, through food preparation and building kitchen skills. As a former school teacher and personal trainer Jasmine is very passionate about reversing the trends of childhood obesity. Jasmine studied at Spelman College and earned a degree in Early Childhood Education. She is convinced that teaching good nutrition habits early in life creates a life-long and generational positive impact. Jasmine has maintained a completely plant-based diet for 17 years and counting. Some of her hobbies include yoga, meditation, fitness, documentaries, writing poetry, collecting records and spending time with family and close friends.
How Anything Vegan Began
Jasmine and her sister lead very busy but holistic lifestyles. Anything Vegan began in 2010 in Albuquerque, New Mexico when her sister had a dinner party and invited her attorney colleagues. She planned a menu and every meal on the menu that she prepared, and Jasmine prepared the same meal vegan, complete with fun nutrition information cards. It was an instance success! When one delighted dinner guest asked how vegan food could be so good, the sisters replied, “Anything You Can Make, I Can Make Vegan.” And Anything Vegan was born! The two started their Vegan Personal Chef Service serving many notable clients. They have prepared food for progressive doctors, CEO’S as well as entertainers such as Grammy award winning Hip-Hop artist and actor, Common. Jasmine says, “We meet people where they are and focus on bridging the gap to where they want to be. Everyone’s journey looks different and we respect that process by being compassionate.” Jasmine’s lifestyle choice of exceptional wellness has led her to become more compassionate towards people, planet, animals and self.
Her Passion for Cooking
Her mother’s culinary flair and her father’s Caribbean (Trinidadian) cuisine cooking skills along with cooking in her grandmother’s kitchen, is where Jasmine draws most of her inspiration. She learned early in life that cooking was the way many people express love. Fascinated with the sociocultural impact of how people around the world communicate through food she also graduated Cum Laude from the University of New Mexico with a B.A in Intercultural Communications and Sociology. Her intercultural communication skills have proven valuable during her personal and culinary inspired travels around the world. She has traveled to: Ghana, West Africa, Germany, England, Italy, Australia, Israel, Trinidad, many of the Virgin Islands, and a 2-month stay in India studying Yoga with the renowned Dr. Pratish. Jasmine’s dedication to learning more about the “healing properties” of food led her to study as a Nutritional Consultant, Master Herbalist and Holistic Health Practitioner programs with The Global College of Natural Medicine. It is clear that Jasmine is a life-long learner who hones her natural gifts and talents through consistent study, travel and self-improvement. Her purpose and passion in life are one in the same…helping people have fun with and heal through food.
Authored her first book entitled, Juice Power for the Thirsty Soul, published in 2005 by The Book Publishing Company. “I recall being so excited when my book first hit the shelves in Borders bookstore, I knew I could not stop there”, she said in an interview. Her book received highest consumer ratings on Borders/Amazon. Juice Power, received highest consumer ratings on Amazon/Borders.com
Recognized by the American Heart Association for participating in cooking instructor for their Heart Healthy ambassador program. (2006)
Featured on the then nationally syndicated Michael Baisden show as a nutritional/recipe discussion guest. (2006)
Recognized by Mad Ministries for her Juicing and 7-Steps to Wellness classes she taught on their “Women healing at Sea” cruise to the Bahamas. (2005)
Invited by the then Minister of Health, to speak in West Africa at Ghana’s largest Natural Health Conference (2005)
Recognized by Atlanta Public Schools, Dunbar Elementary, for the cooking program she created called ‘Project Healthy Parent’ (2003)