Inspired By... Meredith Holbrook, Founder of Rily
When we connected with Meredith and the wonderful Rily team (including Carley Nadine of Truth North Wellness and a Rawkstar Ambassador) we loved hearing the very personal and inspiring story behind their recipe website. Whether it's a plant based lifestyle, looking for gluten free or dairy free recipes, addressing eczema or a more serious illness, Rily provides a guide and resource to eat delicious balanced meals.
At Rawcology, we work to ensure everyone can enjoy our products regardless of dietary restrictions or allergies. We love the comprehensive resource that Meredith and her team have created to offer delicious and nutritious recipes to those with allergies, food intolerances or suffering from various illness and looking for a way to assist their healing with their diet.
Meredith answered some of our questions below and we are thrilled to start this partnership with her and the whole team at Rily. We also have a jam packed giveaway happening on Instagram right now! Go check it out and enter for a chance to win some great prizes.
What inspired you to start Rily, can you share that journey with us?
I have always loved food, and after many years of trial and error, loved cooking. However, when my Dad was diagnosed with Cancer, my love for cooking, food and nutrition became more of a necessity for hope.
My goal - all while feeling extremely helpless – was to create meals for my Dad that would be good for him, without further reminding him of his diagnosis. Even though I had all the skills: research, cooking, basic nutrition, time, resources etc., for what I thought would be a simple task, ended up being one of the most exhausting and frustrating experiences of my life.
I was annoyed by the fact that such a commonly diagnosed disease did not have straight forward answers. It was that frustration that drove me to create my own “dos and don’ts” list of ingredients for the condition, and to compile the “dos” into meals that wouldn’t make my Dad feel like he was on a diet.
Essentially, that is Rily: the word created in homage to my Father by using the first two letters of his first and middle names.
What are the top three things you’ve found people are looking for when it comes to eating for healing? What are the main ailments people are trying to address?
I think a lot of people are looking to use food to complement Western Medicine. One of the sayings I keep hearing is “getting to the root cause”. In many scenarios, treatment and/or medication is necessary – but one of the great things about food is that it can have so many healing properties and it’s something we can do for ourselves.
- Just Feeling Good
A lot of people may just feel not like themselves and they want to get there; whether that be due to bloating, sluggishness, skin care… they just want to feel good!
- Substitutions for Gluten and Dairy
These are two labels that we see popping up more and more on things to avoid, but there’s so many different options, ways of going about it, and information that’s right for each of us. This is why I love the power of substitutions: getting creative in the kitchen and finding the right fit for an individual’s taste, lifestyle and overall health.
- General Curiosity About Simple Swaps
For someone with arthritis, fatty liver, or overall pain and fatigue, there are so many ways to make little swaps that may have extremely noticeable outcomes. There are so many options that can make huge improvements; and for me, that’s fascinating!
There’s a lot going on at Rily! There is no other website that has the sophisticated filtering system that we’ve created, we have over 50 diets, illnesses and conditions to choose from… and it’s free!
We have a very cool community of talented, passionate, thoughtful and unique people – all with a similar goal to help others, share insight, and keep it accessible. Community is extremely important to us; keeping things local and collaborating with likeminded people/companies (Rawcology!).
On a personal note, what is your most important "sacred" part of the day routine and what does it involve to keep you feeling your best?
Honestly, I need two hours to myself every morning before anything else can really happen. My morning ritual is so vital to my happiness, as well as productivity.
Setting aside that time allows myself to wake up at my own pace: make a smoothie (even in winter – I love my smoothies), make tea or coffee, and to spend time outdoors whenever possible. Some days, that time is meant for tidying, paying bills or responding to emails – but either way it’s my own, and I treasure it.
The last year has had a lot of ups and downs, what is keeping you positive and inspired in your personal life and in business?
Collaborating and storytelling. I love talking to people – online or even over the phone; it gives me energy.
We are going through a unique, collaborative, hardship right now – and as unfortunate as it is – it’s an opportunity for us to bond with others in an unusual way. We now have to ability to converse about things that may have once been deemed “too personal”. But now – since COVID and its undeniable domino effect – it seems we have opened ourselves up more, we have become more okay with being vulnerable; there is more common ground with our peers than ever before.
And in some twisted way, that’s a beautiful thing.