021: Vanessa Musi - Pioneering the art of noble baking for a healthier world

Pioneer Healthy Pastry Chef, Vanessa Musi has revolutionized the way we bake since 1994 way before anyone else was even considering alternative pastries.  After blacking out in her culinary school internship, Chef Vanessa was diagnosed with hypoglycemia and doctors suggested she change careers. Instead, she pursued her calling and set out to develop baked goods that use natural sweeteners and wholesome ingredients to enhance flavors, textures, and benefit our health.

Vanessa was born in Mexico City. Her love of fine food came from her British-American mother and her Lebanese-Mexican father. Being a foodie since she was a baby, she has always savored the world.  She studied culinary school at the IBERO University and began her professional career as Chef of the Mexican Embassy in Vienna, Austria, where she fell in love with European pastries.  She returned to Mexico to create the first gourmet stores and delicatessens called Ambrosia Gourmet for the best catering company in Mexico City and was the pastry chef for the production.  She created Mexico’s first healthy baking program, at Maricú, one of the top pastry schools in the country.

In 2001, she became Chef of the award winning Chocolate Maven Bakery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she baked American and French pastries.  Back in Mexico, she set up her own workshop, teaching one of a kind baking classes. She catered to sixty students a week, and also consulted and developed recipes for bakeries, restaurants and culinary schools throughout Mexico. Among her clients were: Monica Patiño, Starbucks Mexico, Häagen-Dazs, and Los Danzantes. She also assisted chefs from Europe and the US during their Mexico City workshops, including: Christophe Adam, Bo Friberg, En-Ming Hsu, Oriol Balaguer, and John Krauss. 

In 2011 Vanessa enrolled in the French Pastry School in Chicago, where she graduated with honors. She was selected as an assistant to the technical advisors of the prestigious Barry Callebaut Chocolate Academy. She worked alongside guest chefs such as Ramon Morato, Christophe Morel and Pascal Janvier, developing recipes and preparing demos.  Vanessa was one of the Mexican leaders who have been selected as inspiring people making a difference in Yo Soy Mexicano.

She now resides in Austin,Texas, where she develops wholesome recipes for culinary and wellness brands such as Bulletproof and Graceland Fruit. She has been Brand Ambassador and Influencer for Vitamix, KitchenAid, and Lakanto Sweetener. In response to the growing demand for healthy pastries, she has taught thousands of bakers throughout Mexico and North America. Her next project is to establish the world’s first healthy pastry school in Austin Texas and publish her keto ebook.

In this episode we talk about:

  • the story of how she fell in love with food at a young age by helping her mother and grandmother in the kitchen

  • her journey from being a budding chef to a near-death experience that almost ended her cooking career, but through her own determination she found personal health and a north star that she has used to guide her as she shares her mission with people all over the world

  • how she serves others by providing classes, workshops, and recipes for healthy baking in English and Spanish from North America to Mexico and beyond

  • she explains the difference between hypoglycemia, pre-diabetic, and diabetic and how you can determine if you may be a candidate

  • she opens up about the realities of being a chef and what it’s like opening the world’s first healthy pastry school in a burgeoning city like Austin, Texas


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Vanessa Musi: 00:00:00 I have a lot of messengers in my life and said that I needed to do something with ingredients that healed and that those were the words they said they were people from all walks of life. Most of them weren't connected with food. So it was really fascinating to see how God gave me that message many times with different, you know, messengers I call them because I think they were very spiritual, very connected, very specific people and very specific moments and they said, this is what I should be. You know what I'm, you're here for. And it was pretty fascinating to see that, how it all made sense when you look back and connect the dots. Yeah. That's when everything clicked.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:00:51 Welcome to The Vitalic Project podcast where you'll learn how to find your own voice in a world filled with noise. I'm Gabe Ratliff. I'll be your host as I sit down with fellow artists, creators and entrepreneurs to learn more about their work and how they serve others so that you can tap into your creative purpose and live a life that's drawn, not traced. All right. I'm stoked. Let's get to it.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:01:14 Hey guys, thanks so much for joining me on episode 021 with Vanessa Musi. I'm very excited to share this episode with you. We had such an amazing conversation. We got deep, we got real. We had all the fields literally. I mean, we went from laughing all over the board to getting really focused on the realities of being a chef and the realities of being a human and health issues and how that can also help guide your way on your path as a human and in your career. And that's exactly what Vanessa has done with hers. She's a pioneer, healthy pastry chef. She's revolutionized the way that we bake since 1994 way before anyone else was even considering alternative pastries. She blacked out in a culinary school internship and was diagnosed with hypoglycemia. Doctors were suggesting that she just changed careers and her being the fighter that she is and the determined person that she is.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:02:27 Whenever she hears no, she inevitably will turn that into a yes and will make it happen. So instead she pursued her calling and set out to develop baked goods that use natural sweeteners and wholesome ingredients to enhance flavor and texture and benefit her and our health. She now resides in Austin, Texas, where she develops wholesome recipes for culinary and wellness brands such as bulletproof and Graceland fruit. And she's a brand ambassador and influencer for brands like Vitamix, Kitchenaid, and Lakanto sweetener and response to the growing demand for healthy pastries. She's taught thousands of bakers throughout Mexico and North America. Her next project is to establish the world's first healthy pastry school based out of Austin, Texas. And she's also publishing a new keto ebook. In the episode we talk about her journey with food and when that began, when she was a young girl going through her training as a chef and we talk about when she was diagnosed with hypoglycemia, as I mentioned already, the how that led her into eventually also becoming prediabetic. And she actually explains what that means and how that's different from being diabetic and how those all are relevant and relative to each other. And she even goes into how you can determine with what kind of symptoms you might have if you might be a prediabetic or diabetic. And she talks about noble baking and what that means and how that's played a part in her career as well as the process of developing her current venture, which is the world's first healthy baking school. And now I'd like to introduce you to Vanessa Musi.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:04:26 Vanessa, thank you so much for being on the show today. I'm so excited to have you here.

Vanessa Musi: 00:04:31 Thank you Gabe. I it's an honor. I'm really happy to be invited on your show and really happy to be sharing my story with your audience being on your podcast.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:04:41 Thank you. Thank you so much. I thought we would start off first with where your journey began with food cause I feel like you have such a long, beautiful story around your trajectory through food and I love the story about your family and how that was also a part of your love for food. And I thought we would maybe just start there to get us going.

Vanessa Musi: 00:05:07 Wonderful. Thank you. I'll let you, how far back do we have to be good. Can we go, because it can be a long story, but I'll try to be brief and or, I mean, where do we start on that part?

Gabe Ratliff: 00:05:20 One of the things I thought was really fascinating was the diversity and that the multicultural aspect of your, your parents. So I thought maybe we could touch on that a little bit and you referenced in your bio that that was a big part of how you got into food and you know, maybe you can start there and then just maybe just take us through some of the highlights as you were growing up in food and, and how that kind of brought you where you are.

Vanessa Musi: 00:05:46 Wonderful. Thank you. Yeah. Well I was born savoring the world literally. And I think I've been always been very sensory and very touchy feely back in a person that always wants to, she she and taste the world, you know, that's why, you know, do things. And so my earliest memory of food was when I was sitting in a high chair, only two years old. I was eating and also vocal and that my mom prepared. So I think she was very good. And that was my first foodie experience. Then my second, earliest memory was when I was thinking when my mom and she would, she had a Joy of Cooking cookbook that prompt or everybody knows about and it was like really old and battered and I'd get on a chair, you know, get up on the, you know, the shelves, she'd hide it up some work that would bring it down on him, make some brownies.

Vanessa Musi: 00:06:40 And I became a baker like when I was seven years old. And yeah, so we bake and we live in the outside of Mexico City. And I came from a family of like self-starters and very creative parents who did everything hands on. Everything was craft. See. And you know, my mom had a, you know, she's made her own clothes, text though all that again. So it was very, that was how we were educated and shaped was through arts and crafts. And My, my space was baking, right. So my grandmother and my father's side Lebanese. And so she'd cook every w Saturday for 60 people. So I was, I mean that was like huge meal, right? And Lebanese food or the big thing. And so, I mean everything was surrounded with flavors, tastes and sensations and cultures. And so my Lebanese part, the Mexican part, born and raised, I was born and raised in Mexico City and my mom, English in English and lived in the states.

Vanessa Musi: 00:07:48 So that was another influence mirror. And so my mom would go to la every summer and she'd bring back cookbooks, which were very progressive at that time, that eighties and so the earliest Martha Stewart, the, I mean cookbooks of, you know, like whole grain baking and the beginning of whole, you know, healthiest making, I can think of was that time when I was like, I was 16 years old, I would start baking, you know, with whole grains and less sugar and that kind of thing. And then I had a neighbor who opened first whole grain baking shop in Mexico City and I would go to her house and I would taste her, you know, her products. And I would tell her, oh, this is too sweet to talk. That's not really good quality or you know, so I was like very like would critic almost. So I guess I was really inspired with food and flavors and my father's family, my, one of my father's cousins married one of the best chefs in Mexico City, Monica Patino.

Vanessa Musi: 00:08:55 And so I met her a early age, I was 15 and I went to a restaurant and I will fight, fell in love with that fine dining and you know, and I said, I'm going to be a chef when I was 16 and that was like a very impactful moment. The day I walk into a restaurant and I saw her, you know, the way she made all her conserve preserves and gems and chutneys and all that, like a big thing. No a moment that I thought this is it, you know? So that's kind of the background of how food around in my, my life in the, in the earliest years. Right. Yeah. And then, I mean, it was pretty clear that when it'd be a chef at an early age. Yeah. Wow. Yeah. And there there's more to the story later on. You can go back.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:09:40 Yeah. The one of the things I'm curious about was what were some of the things that, you mentioned some of the things along the way, but growing up in Mexico City, I mean there's this, one of the things that, that my wife and I both love about Mexico is the food. It's just so tied to the culture. I mean even like you said with the, you know, having that Lebanese element in the large grim 60 people. That's awesome. You know, and this is having such a large group of people in the, I, I love that, that you know, Familia that is so prevalent in the Mexican culture and I, I just wonder, you know, is there w where there foods that you just did just take you back to your childhood or that you still love to make that are just really special for you or that connect you, you know, to your, to your family in some kind of way, like maybe your, your mom or grandmother or anything like that. Are there any things that you just kind of still hold dear in that way?

Vanessa Musi: 00:10:40 Yeah, that's like an interesting melting pot because there was a lot of, yeah, I mean it's, it's like a, they're so diverse, right? I mean, so I can think of chilies from the Mexican side of that. Every time I craving a chili sauce, everything's got to be spicing. I mean, I'm going to say that that's where the all flavors of my baking come from because, you know, the Lebanese cooking is also bold and, and you know, it's, you know, there's so much and the both flavors are, you know, the acidity, the chilies, the spiciness, the, you know, the strengths of flavors I think is something I relate to a lot. You know, the olives, the black olives, the tanginess of, of the yogurts in them. It's kind of the equivalent of the Greek yogurt, the Lebanese use and that kind of stuff with very, I mean, I don't, you don't notice it when you're younger, but looking back, connecting the dots, that's what I crave.

Vanessa Musi: 00:11:42 And every time I go to a restaurant or, or a a food experience, I'm always looking for the tangy acid chili, you know, something that, that will open my pallet. We'll, you know. Yeah. I, I surprising elements and that's what I prayed. My mom would also make it amazing. Chutneys mango chutneys and God, yeah. I mean, I don't know if she got that from me, honestly. I guess she learned in it, I don't know, maybe the English heart and, okay. Yeah. But it was, I mean, those things were amazing and the spices and I had another neighborhood make German cookies, so I grew up with those kinds of flavors and what was, look for something like Willie made a statement kind of thing. Like very bold and very different. Yeah. A lot of notes in that cooking. Yeah. So that's what I, what takes me back, those kind of flavors.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:12:37 Oh, I love it. I We just got, um, we tried a new Indian restaurant and they have the most amazing mango Chutney. Oh Gosh. Yeah. It's a place called mint that we just tried a little while ago. And we went back actually I think within a week cause I was like, babe, I gotta go get some more of that Chutney. It just so good. And there's samosa are amazing as well. And um, yeah, just, it's, oh my gosh. And it's exactly what you're saying. You know, it's just really powerful. Complex multilayer yeah. And just the way it hits and then rolls over and then it finishes at, Oh, I just, and, and uh, and I spoke, I have, uh, a few friends that are from, um, different regions in India and a friend of mine from the southern region was actually explaining to me that the mangoes from India are just vastly different then what we get here. And that that's part of where that comes from is that they have their own, a specific type of mango that's just got so much more flavor to it, which I already love mangos period. But to just, you know, just takes it to another level so I can totally connect with that.

Vanessa Musi: 00:13:46 Oh, wonderful. There's another connection, right.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:13:51 I was gonna move a little bit further forward and ask around, you know, were you trained as a chef and what was that like when you, when you switched gears from that familial experience where it was, you know, in the community too, the more professional level, what was that like?

Vanessa Musi: 00:14:27 Well, definitely it wasn't a, um, single line. I mean, it was definitely a day toward path. It was a winding path. I started to be a psychologist first. I wasn't sure of being us a chef to begin with. I mean, I knew I wanted to be a chef when I was younger, but I was at a point where I loved self development and I thought, well, should I be a should I be a, you know, a psychologist? I love psychology. I love therapy. I was always torn between both. And I decided for psychology and I did one year of that and then I realized that no, I was totally hands on. I needed you that hands on experience. I was not going to be great psychologist. So then I switched and then I realized, yeah, cooking is my, my passion. And, um, so I, I became one of the first chefs in Mexico because that wasn't a program that existed. So like, nobody knew what the word chef was. I remember that was 1992. And so I, when I did it professionally, I was one of the first generations Mexico did that and there were very few schools giving that program.

Vanessa Musi: 00:15:22 And so yeah, when I die I want like this is it, this is my happy place and this one I'm going to do. And so I, I took a culinary arts program in Mexico City and one of the few universities that one doing it, it was two year program and you had to do internships like in the morning every day and then go well an afternoon. That was like two, two intensive years, which are brutal. You were in the kitchen 10 hours a day. Right. And so yeah, it was pretty intense. That's how it started. And that was all savory pastries. I was, pretty bad, I'm going to say that that wasn't, they didn't have a good degree on that side. Savory and it was pretty good. We had a lot of kitchen culinary experience in restaurants. That's kind of where I got my feet in, fine dining and good, good Mexican restaurants.

Vanessa Musi: 00:16:19 And that's how I started my career. I was going to ask around, do shifting you, perfect segue. I was going to ask now as we kind of shift into your career as a chef, what are some of the highlights because you had so many great things listed. I didn't really know what you might want to speak to around that, so I thought I would let you kind of guide us here around some of the highlights of what you've done. Cause I mean you, I mean you were in Vienna and I mean all over the place. I'm working in the Mexican embassy there and so I, I was just curious about what were some of the highlights that kind of helped get you to where you began to shift to the, you know, healthy, you know, as a healthy pastry chef and with healthy baking. Yeah, yeah, for sure.

Vanessa Musi: 00:17:03 I mean, definitely. I mean, when I was in the, and the University of New Mexico and studying to be a chef, my first job was in one of the best restaurants in Mexico City, and that was in charge of soups, but I didn't like the job miserable. And that was praying every night for a better job. And I was like, well, there's gotta be some better. Right. And suddenly I was offered the job, a chef of the Mexican embassy in Vienna, which was a huge leap, right. Me. No, not even a, like one of the line cooks to being the chef of a row of an embassy. I mean, you can't lead. Yeah. It was a huge, huge change. And I was only 23 I was very green and I wasn't really heroin, but I did it. That was like, well, that was one of my dreams and it really was one of my bucket lists.

Vanessa Musi: 00:17:57 And so I was in Vienna and I was completely in love with everything related to pastry. And I would go to every coffee shop and try every paste and I'm like, I enrolled myself in this pastry program secretly without anybody knowing. And when them, she found out, they said I couldn't do it because I had to be on call 24 seven and that wasn't part of my job. So I had a sign out of the program and I was really, really impacted baking. They're in the desserts and yeah, I realized when I was cooking everything in that residents that there was nothing. I mean not my dessert side was really bad. I had great ideas, but I make a decent pastry. Right. So I was determined to study nip pastry chef that a few months before, you know, when I was in culinary school, in my internship I was under a lot of stress and that, and my parents had separated and that's kind of where it started.

Vanessa Musi: 00:19:02 And I had a lot of work. I had two jobs, I had, you know, the pastry program with Sol day. And so I fainted in my internship and I split my head. And back then they, they didn't have the plot, the maps, you know, the mets for seats, you know, that the chefs use, they had wooden wooden boards. Wow know crates where you, I guess may still use them for construction thing. And so I split my head on that and I woke at the hospital hours later and I'm like, well, what's happening? Right. And then so I was eventually diagnosed with hypoglycemia. That was, that was 1992 I was 23 years old and it took me a lot of time to figure it out like what was going on in my body and in my life because nobody had heard of by for glycemia. Nobody knew what low blood sugar was.

Vanessa Musi: 00:19:54 Doctors couldn't figure it out. So I had to go to alternative doctors and see answers, you know, what am I going to do with this? Right. That was just feeling really, really sick and really low energy. I had a foggy brain. I just, I mean, I was starting a new career and I was now like one month into this new career, right? So eventually I, the alternative doctors told me I should change careers, which I didn't. Okay. And then they said I couldn't be a chef. And that wasn't, think for me, I, that wasn't the lifestyle. It was too much stress. And so I was, you know, overburdened by life, things in general and too much work. And so, yeah, I mean I was pretty sick and then to me a few months or years to figure out what eat, what to do, how to live hyper low blood sugar and especially as a chef, you know, and back then and still now there a lot of, you know, impact on how you have to be a chef.

Vanessa Musi: 00:20:59 You've got to, you know, work til you drop kind of thing. You don't want to do it. There's a line of people outside the door who's going to, who are willing to, you know, kill for that job. Right. And so there was no self care or anything. And Yeah. So I kind of had to figure it out. And you know, tests a lot of things and natural because there weren't any medicines or anything. It just a way of life. It's just a lifestyle. So that was the starting of the how I started healthy taking. And so in end I fainted for the second time and I split my lip so I had to, that was my second accident. Yeah. I know there was a sign right there. Right. And so that was, that was such a devastating accident. Yeah. I realized I just couldn't live with that pressure and that work load of 16 hours a day. And you know, I had migraines every day and I would just, hmm. Deal with that workforce and workload. And so I decided to go back to Mexico and figure out, you know, like how can I be a pastry chef? Well, the last word and I think can do it more creatively or more, maybe more fun. And yeah, that was my goal. So I went back to Mexico and I became a pastry chef empirically without taking notes, program or anything. And I just learned from books and written magazines and I got the job in this very famous and catering company and they told me I can do anything, whatever I wanted. And so that's how I learned on the job. Yup. And yeah, that's, I started a mate, there was all traditional, a screening. I was still wasn't feeling very well. So of course it took me a few years to figure it out that I had to great a way, a new way of baking. So that's, that took me to other paths later on. And that's Kinda how it continued. Yeah.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:22:51 When you say it took you two then another path, what, can you elaborate on that? What do you mean?

Vanessa Musi: 00:22:56 Yeah, well, I mean I, it, it, I guess I made a lot of turns in my career because I took me a long time to figure out what I wanted and how I wanted to, you know, bake or cook or how I wanted to, you know, lead my career and life. And I did pretty much every job you can think of. Yeah. I was a chef of a restaurant in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and they had an amazing award-winning bakery. And that was another, I wasn't one of my first experiences with Vegan baking. That was in 2001 and that was where I saw another way of being, right? I started with seeds and whole grains and you know, removing eggs and I mean those are the very famous bakery. I had a line outside the door and won awards. So I was doing the say report that was like my last savory job and I thought, and I said, business it, I'm not doing this again.

Vanessa Musi: 00:23:56 and so I really want to be one of these eight years, right? I really want to say, okay, okay. So I had the first glimpse of something alternative, right? Making making, and I tasted no ingredients and I thought, well, you know what? This is like I'm getting there. Right? That was one of the first when pieces of what I'm doing now. And then I started to just explore and feel, and I consistently go to bakeries and afternoons or coffee shops and I would always ask myself, why isn't there a cookie I can eat? Why isn't there a muffin or a Brownie that I can make? Because all of these sugar loaded process flowers, I mean, not only did they not taste that great to me, but I felt terrible afterwards. Right? And so I was always craving something sweet. And when I traveled, I went to New York and went to San Francisco, San Diego, LA. I mean, yeah, Paris and I never found anything I liked that I could eat.

Vanessa Musi: 00:24:56 And I was always missing that. Right? And I'm like, I just want a cookie. I want something that's, you know, elevated and it's, it tastes delicious and it's, yeah. And I can eat it. I just feel great with it. And I guess there was a lot of people I knew as well. Right. So that created a huge need and I'm such a foodie that I will do anything for craving. So yeah, I will do anything and pay whatever it is. So that's kind of how it started. And then I, I got a scholarship and one of the best pastry school in Mexico and Latin America. And Luckily the owner, well I work with directly, she said, well let's, why don't you start doing a, you know, teaching a program of like whole grain baking. Right. And that was nice. That was in 2001 and I'm like, well, we only have like three recipes, right.

Vanessa Musi: 00:25:45 So we started to develop more recipes. Yes. And then I started to develop recipes for Starbucks and Haagen-Dazs and other companies. And then I started, you know, like experimenting with the research and development and you know, for classes also products. And I work with that in that school for three years. And I had a lot of access to the best pastry chefs in the world who I wouldn't assist in classes. I would translate, I wouldn't, you know, pick them up, pick the chefs up at their hotel, talk with them, and then we'll be talking in French, English, Spanish. And so I got a lot of no opportunities to see what the world was doing to them. And every time they make something, I would say the same thing. It's too sweet, it's too processed. It's too, you know, yeah, I just can't eat all this stuff.

Vanessa Musi: 00:26:36 So I kept, you know, not feeling well after all these years and I'm like, okay, um, I'm not getting to what I want. Right. Yeah. And I started to realize there were a lot of people like me who all, you either have diabetes, prediabetes, hypoglycemia, health problems, cancer. I mean, yeah, we all want a sweet tweet that's healthy I think. And so I, I created the first healthy pastry program in Mexico after that class we did. And that was like a three month program and everybody loved it and you know, awesome. We're filling up. And that's when I realized there was a demand. People were open to that. And then we started new, I mean, then I did the, you know, like classes around Mexico and I did 38 classes that I constantly financed and went from Culiacan to Cancun. And I would, you know, rent the schools and I would get the students and I would fill the classes and, and did that for 40 classes and 4,000 students. I mean really, really fun. And I started to, to create the market that we now have. Right. Um, and that was my goal too. Spread the word and to educate and to great products back then. I mean that was six years ago. Back then people were open to this but it wasn't what it is now. Right. And now it's pretty mainstream back then it was like what are you talking about? Right? Yeah. Yeah.

Vanessa Musi: 00:27:44 I was going to ask what, what were some of the challenges that you had in those early years with that? You know, cause that's something that, it's so funny because now even when we travel to other countries, you're seeing that Oh, you know, there's the, not only the awareness but the, that shift in offering the, you know, Vegan, gluten free. I mean I, I was a vegetarian for 17 years and when we went to Espana. We were in Barcelona and they were laughing at me cause I mean, you know, oh yeah. I mean you've got like a beer can pork and you know, you've got, yeah. And um, uh, you know, all kinds of, you know, seafood dishes and all this stuff. And I remember asking for vegetarian options, and this was years ago, I think the last time we were in Barcelona was like 2011 and, uh, they were just, you could see the book. It got me going. Uh, sure. Yeah. We'll see what we can do. I remember I ordered some paella, and I was asking, you know, could I get a vegetarian version? And you know, my wife's like, yeah, yeah, we'll see about that. And you know, it's, I just remember that that was being so difficult. And I mean, that was, you know, not even that long ago when you think about it, but we have come just like you said, like six years ago, seven, eight years ago. I mean, we've come so far to where now when we've been in some places where I'll, I'll be blown that they've got, you know, Vegan options, gluten free options, places that I would not expect it. And so I'm curious, you know, what, what were some of the challenges like when you were in those, because you've been a pioneer of this for a long time, uh, with, especially with this, you know, personal reason around your health and just recognizing these treats being just too sweet to process to whatever, whatever it might be. And so you've been leading the way for so long in this way. What, what were the challenges you were finding and what were they, where are you getting it more from the industry itself or were they from people themselves also not being ready to make the shift? Or how did that look?

Vanessa Musi: 00:30:27 Oh yeah, I could probably write a book about that one. It's been 28 years. Right? So when I started, I mean, there was a lot of rejection in the industry, in the culinary industry from chefs. I'm like, well, what's that going to taste like? Well, what have you removed sugar, what's going going to happen? What are you using? What sweeteners are you using? Just anything alternative. I W I think has a lot of rejections to begin with. And especially food and especially in a culture that's very fixed in a certain way. Like, oh, there's got to be a lot of sugar, there's gotta be flour, there's going to be, you know, status quo when you challenge it and we're going to get a lot of rejection, nos. I mean, that's when I got doubles. That's one of the examples. Schools will not hire me.

Vanessa Musi: 00:31:11 I had to rent the school so I had to take the plunge. I had to by necessity finance myself. I had to create that sweet and healthy world. I had to, you know, convince people. I had to do online classes, I had to, we have an online platform. I have a, you know, mm. Really convinced. I mean, half conversations with producers. I mean, people who are making ingredients and you know, create the market for that and also the demand and talk to two people who are making products. Can you make this? Can you make that? I mean, we need this, we have a lot of demands. So at the beginning there wasn't enough enough people to make it worth it. Right. But then I, when I started with salt, the classes were, people were noticing when their results, nothing like the results, like numbers to make a statement.

Vanessa Musi: 00:32:00 Right? Yeah. So that's how I, that's how I did it. And I'm back in a person who loves challenges and I love rejection for me is always and yeah. Yeah. Platform to make it happen. So when I hear the word no is for me, it really strikes a chord of yes. Right. So I'm going to make it a yes. And I'm very, very driven. It's my mission, my life purpose. So yeah, I mean it's, I'm gonna to say it was easy because I had three major surgeries in the middle of all that. And so a lot of health problems and a lot of, I mean it's not easy to have a rejection or people say no or they don't believe in you or I mean I think people like the clients or the students. I had to be a role model and had to share my story and I had to leave very vulnerable and you know, become kind of like an influencer.

Vanessa Musi: 00:32:56 And that helped a lot because they trusted my opinion. Well, so at an early age in my career, I would notice that people would really like if I mentioned this pot or the salt or this chocolate, people would go out and buy it. So I was way before the term influencer. And then I started to realize, well, they appreciated my, my perspective and they appreciated my taste and they trusted me. So that help the lot, you know? And I was very, that's something that helped my career a lot. I think providing that I'm walking the talk that this is what I love and that this is, I'm always sharing what I really am passionate about. And so I think that that was a natural engagement and, hmm, no, but I wasn't, yeah. I mean, there was a lot of rapport on both sides. Eventually it's, yeah, it took 20 years. Yeah.

Vanessa Musi: 00:33:56 You know, people say like, Oh, you're an overnight sensation, and you're like, yeah, it just took me 10 20 years, 19 stations look like it's that there's a lot behind the scenes people don't see and we don't realize it. And still to this day, I mean, I still have to convince architects, you know? Yeah. People like that to do my making school. And I don't think that ever stops the convincing or the right or the negotiation. It doesn't really stop. Yeah. Yeah. That's one of the byproducts of being a visionary like yourself, you know? Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And being very consistent. I mean, that's something I have like ingrained every single day. Got It. Spread the message of Ghana every single day and be really, really consistent and grow and expand and, you know, make another thing and create more products. Yes. Okay. Take it to another level one that's well, what I have to do everyday.

Vanessa Musi: 00:34:59 Yeah. Yeah. I wanted to reference something you mentioned earlier around when doctors were telling you that you wouldn't be able to be a chef after diagnosing you with hypoglycemia. I mean, what was that like after, you know, you're on this path and you're at this point you were, you know, you had had several years in the early stages of developing yourself into this career and you've put all this time, you know, in school and all these things in your, and your, you know, your in this a internship and all these things in your, your, you're going full tilt. I mean, you're, you're going and all of a sudden you're hearing a, that you've been diagnosed with something that you had no idea about. And then, and it was also new, not many, not many people knew about it or even how to deal with it. And then you're also being told, hey, this thing that you're falling in love with, you're not going to be able to do.

Vanessa Musi: 00:35:58 Obviously you just said, if you hear no, you're going to make it happen and you're that determine, which is amazing. And I love that. Um, but what was that like when you, when you heard the news? Oh Wow. It seems far and it seems like yesterday at the same time kind of know. Sometimes I think that that happened to me or I'm not, I still remember the day and everything, but I mean it was, it was like a diagnosis of like, I'm not gonna say cancer or lack of the name, but it was like a morally difficult, I mean, yeah. Like why are you saying that I'm, you know, handicap or, you know, I felt like, oh, you're not able to do this or you're not physically well, or it's a big diagnosis. It's a big label. Yeah. And there was a lot going on in my personal life with my parents and the whole thing.

Vanessa Musi: 00:36:54 And I mean, like the whole, there was a lot of uncertainty. I W I was overburdened with everything, so it was like one more thing, I just can't deal with it, you know? That's why I him and that's why I blacked out. And I remember thinking, I just can't deal with one more thing. Right. And Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it was a, it was a big diagnosis, but at the same time I know myself and I'm, and I thought, you know what, I'm like, I'm going to prove them wrong. Yeah. And, and I've always had that willy young eyes, like, I'm going to prove everybody wrong. And, and now that I you, I mean I'm almost 50 but I can think of, it's not that I wanted to prove other people wrong, that I had to pull myself back and do it in that I wouldn't do it on my own terms.

Vanessa Musi: 00:37:38 So I realized that and that divine storm I was, I found my purpose and I found that, you know, that pain became my passion and my purpose and I just one day realize, well how amazing that I got that wonderful that I went through all that. You know, those a better diversity in that you know, that most health problems and I'm so glad I did it right. And I glad I'm so glad that that turning to that pastry in that cookie or that Brownie or that doughnut or that I can eat that in the world. And Saber that and that can become a the world's best healthy pastry school or, or coffee shop or bakery cafe. I mean, what a great thing. Right? But yeah, back then it was, it was really hard, a hard pill to swallow for sure. And, but I'm always been that really, really determined like I'm gonna make happen.

Vanessa Musi: 00:38:35 Like, and you say, no, I'm going to go on and do it. I think it, so, yeah. Yeah. I wanted to ask a, I want to switch gears here in a second, but I, you just led me, something I really want to ask you now about is when you, when you know, time, that was obviously a really impactful moment, but I'm also curious about just as a chef, the reality of a chef's life. Like you talked about the hours when you were in Vienna and just this, this a schedule that you have to be on and constantly literally be on stage. You know, you're constantly having to crank out and like come up with new ideas and all these things, but it's a very different thing than what it sounds like you've created for your life now. And I'm curious when you hit these hard times, you know, when you're hitting the architects that you're trying to sell or you know something's not working or things have been tough in the kitchen or you know, these times they get really difficult for a chef, what do you do to, to push through and, and to kind of bring yourself back to your passion and your purpose.

Vanessa Musi: 00:39:39 Like what is it that that is the, the trigger or the catalyst or what is it that brings you back to that place? What is your, the thing that you come back to that keeps you centered around your mission when things can get really heavy and emotional? Oh, what a great question. I love that one. Yeah. Well the first thing that I thought of when you asked that question is, God, I've been with me all the time. I mean, I do remember that. And I think that's, you know, when the going gets tough and those get tough. Sorry, I don't think about that. And you know, I think I was chosen for this and then it just connects me to that and know, I think when you hit rock bottom, I do think that you connect to another level. No problem. Like I don't know if you've ever felt really strong pain or like a huge adversity.

Vanessa Musi: 00:40:33 Your, a lot of them, you know, it can be emotional pain or physical pain but beneath all that. It was like a huge piece, right? Oh, like a sense of purpose. And I think you're able to connect with that. I think you're going to find that level of I'm here to do something meaningful. Worn. Yeah. I mean that's, that's how I take a step back and I, we connect my two, my son for, and I think, I don't think I feel that, that I'm on the right path and that gives me another, an amazing strength to do. I think being unstoppable and keep going and keep going with, with, with love, direction and drive and yeah, make it happen. So there's days when I Think, oh my God, I'm so tired, I can't go to war. You know, like this person said no, or I just can't find an Ben Bangor or somebody do baking school or you know, or it became so complicated.

Vanessa Musi: 00:41:39 What else can I do? Right. Or I mean sometimes it's not that linear and then you can see, and I think that's something that's really important than in our, uh, we expect our lives or our projects or careers to be linear, but they're really not. And so there's always something you, I mean, maybe that's not a new mistake, take a step back and let go a little bit. That's what I've done. And it's really fascinating to see how then we connect in a better way. And then you find somebody, oh, that was a person or that was, you know, I think the university does connect to that higher purpose in a better way. And the architect, you thought you were hot, you would hire, wasn't when you were going to hire. And then, yeah, I think you really need to connect to your, you're in her center and just feel that intuition and, and yeah, I mean sometimes you, you have to take a step back and sometimes just, I think, you know, when it flows, I dunno if that makes sense, but, but you know, when things are your are going on with, on the path, you need that need to be done.

Vanessa Musi: 00:42:53 And if not, it's for a reason. Right. And, and it's pretty fascinating and I think we're not connected with God and there was always, I think, I mean, I talked to him and say, well let's what else? So yeah, it's pretty fascinating to see them. I think you're not alone, right? Yeah. Sorry, that was very emotional. Thank you. Thank you for sharing that. I wanted to honor that and just let you say what you want to say. Yeah, yeah. But I think, I think we wait and I think every, and we mission-driven, um, impactful project, definitely whenever you want to call it, God, the universe or whatever that is for you. I mean, it definitely is a line and I think there's a higher power though, but we're there to help. Yeah. Yeah. Well, and I think that's, that's one thing that, I mean I, I wanted to share that for me, this type of conversation is that for me, that's why I do this and that's why I appreciate so much that you felt comfortable to share that in such an open way because that's why I do this. And that was what happened for me when I started doing this show is that I realized my flow comes from having these real conversations about stuff that's really, really important to us. And it's not just this like superficial way of living, but something that goes to a deeper level and something that when people listen to this, it can actually hit home and make a difference and maybe you know, make

Gabe Ratliff: 00:44:31 somebody's day better or, or just like you said, like we're not alone. That's part of my mission is to reinforce the idea that as creatives and as entrepreneurs and just humans, that we're not alone and religion has had a bittersweet connection to history from all over the planet and how people interact with religion in each other. And you know, I don't want to take it down that path too far, but I just want to use that example to say people have different connections to religion, but the one thing that connects us is generally a belief in something bigger than ourselves. Whether, like you said, whether you call it God or whatever the universe, whatever type of name that we give it, and the label and visual reference that we have for it. That when you feel that flow that you referenced, and this the same for me, when I started to feel my flow, cause I was not feeling it, I was, I was feeling this and I didn't really realize it at first I didn't realize I was not in the flow.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:45:45 And then once I started to feel the flow, I was like, hm, Oh okay, now I'm on the right path. And it all started to come together, you know, and then I started to recognize, okay, wait a second, now this, this is feeling right. And it's like on a really bigger scale that once it's, you know, it's like when they talk about with athletes or I'm also a musician and you know, when you get into the flow and music you can feel it. But I wasn't feeling it in what I was doing. I was feeling it here and there, you know. But once I started to do this and have these conversations and start to get a little deeper and a little deeper and, and really start to get into, you know, realize who I'd wanted to speak to and who I wanted to show, who I wanted to interview to share with what, what people, you know, what, who was the, who was the, the audience that I wanted to help.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:46:39 And as that continued to evolve and get where we are here, you know, this is, these are those moments. I mean, I was going through it when you were sharing that, you know, and, and I just wanted to call that out on the show right now and then let you know, like how impactful that was just for me because that's where I want this to go. I want this to not just be about influencing people. Right? Yeah. Like you referenced that earlier. It's not about that. It's about connecting on a level, especially because, I mean we've already shared even before we started record how many connections that we have. And that says something that there's so much of a consciousness that is connected. People can understand. Doesn't matter if you're from Mexico City or if you're from Washington d C or if you're from Lebanon or wherever, you know, it doesn't matter.

Gabe Ratliff: 00:47:30 And so that's what I think is so amazing about having these conversations. And that's why I love podcasting is because you can be in Austin and I can be here in Denver and we can have this conversation. Are you in Austin right now? Yeah. Okay. I wasn't sure if you're traveling. Uh, but you know, we could be where we are but we can still have this really great, awesome conversation that can, that can help somebodies day or let them just hear a great story of, you know, for if there's somebody who wants to be a pastry chef or wants to be a chef or is just a creative out there that's like trying to figure out their way. Cause I had just, uh, just as windy of a career as you have. So when you were talking about that, totally connected did on that too.

Vanessa Musi: 00:48:12 Cool. Yeah. Well it's great to hear that. Yeah. And honestly, yeah, I have a lot of messengers in my life that I needed to do something with ingredients that heal and that those were the words they said they were people from all walks of life. Most of them weren't connected with them food. So it was really fascinating to see how God gave me that message many times with different, you know, messengers I call them because I think they were very Mary and spiritual, very connected, very specific people and very specific moments. And they said, this is what I should be, you know, this what I'm you're here for. And it was pretty fascinating to see that how it all made sense when you look back and connect the dots. Yeah. That was really, that's when I, when everything clicked and said this is like, this is a recipe. Yeah.

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Gabe Ratliff: 00:49:51 I was wondering if we could switch gears now a little bit around, you know, you talked about when you originally got diagnosed with hypoglycemia, but then you also have referenced, um, you know, prediabetes, which I was actually even with my dad having diabetes, uh, you, you, you mentioned that your dad has diabetes as well. And even with my dad having it, I hadn't even heard of prediabetes and I was wondering if you could explain to those of us that might not know what that is and how that differs from diabetes.

Vanessa Musi: 00:50:22 Yeah, yeah, for sure. It's, it's pretty fascinating. Um, well my dad was with diabetes probably 16 years ago around that time. Okay. I remember he's now 78 and I remember like 20 years ago he wasn't looking very well and he'd always been super healthy and, but there were like early signs, now that I look back and he had like a more of a s he was always very sad and very tall and, and you know, he was an athlete and both, you know, very energetic right away from Tang. And he was, Aye, the club was his life and he wouldn't, I was doing sports and like very energetic, very sociable and yeah. And then so later on his health started to go down and nobody knew what it was, what it was. And we come from that culture in Mexico where people don't do their blood work.

Vanessa Musi: 00:51:22 So you know, there's not a lot of prevention. Yeah. So that's a key word. I'm talking specifically because I've seen it so many times in my classes and in 28 years. And so sometimes we don't know our bodies, right. We don't listen to them and we don't see them and we don't acknowledge what's going on or, or go to the doctors or have a full blood panel panel done. We just don't have that culture generally. I mean, I was, I, we talked about that. I was pregnant who? Hypoglycemia 20 years ago and that's how it, the started, that was low blood sugar. So my blood sugar was around 76 the 80 I never crossed the hundred. Right. So once, if you have your, your fasting glucose, which I'm new, you pinch your finger in the morning before breakfast and your blood sugar is above a hundred I'm going to say you better go to the doctor pretty soon because that's a level you don't want to be at, right?

Vanessa Musi: 00:52:23 So do you want to be Oh below 90 right? 80 90 that's a good blood sugar level for everybody so why do we need to have low, but I mean now, oh, stable blood sugar or none and a good blood sugar because you live longer, you have a better quality of life. So low blood sugar in a good way. It's good for everybody. You just age better you, I think better. You don't have, you know, you don't lose memory. I mean, everything in our alliance is related to blood sugar. Pretty much. Why? Because we have more energy we have, and we don't have the ups and downs. Right? If your blood sugar goes up and down, that's the worst thing because your energy's high or it's low. It crashes and Burns. And generally most people eat. Yeah. You know, the standard American Diet, right? So there's Patho, there was rice, there's Taito, there's fruit, there's processed food serving, I mean breads, pizza. So a lot of carbs, right? And so generally, yeah, people who have diabetes or prediabetes or sugar, blood sugar problems, I mean, I bless him with a blood sugar problem. We're generally sensitive or intolerant to carbohydrates, right? So we don't process them the same way. Right? That's one thing to know list, especially type two diabetes is, is a carbohydrate intolerance. So our sugars are all over the place. So you can have them low than high. Let's say what happened to me is I would have breakfast in the morning and wouldn't having hypoglycemia and without knowing I was ending a lot of carbs, right? So three hours later I was starving. So my husband, you know, I had a crash and burn of, of energy, right? So I didn't know that. And I lived that way for like 20 years, eating too many carbohydrates, you know. So I was living as a call it as a sugar burner, right?

Vanessa Musi: 00:54:26 Our energy comes from sugar are carbohydrates. People don't realize that if I like, oh a sandwich, there's sugar in the flour and I'm meeting in the, in the Brett, right? If I'm eating pasta, there's sugar in them. In the past, if I'm meeting rice, well there sugar in the rice, right? I mean that turns to sugar. So that's a source of energy that we're, we were taught to eat carbohydrates and that was our source of energy. But that's not a really good source for us and for most people. So, you know, we depend on that energy source and it crosses and burdens, crashes and burdens, and we don't, you know, energy is health, right? Yup. So that's not the best way to do it. So if you know that your father is diabetic, it's an immediate connection. So that's, it's in your genes, right? Right. And if you fertilize that gene, you're most likely to have that.

Vanessa Musi: 00:55:24 So if you know, like that are mom diabetic, and that's, how do you know that the first thing you go to, the doctrine, that questions and the forms, are these your dad that are mom diabetic? Yes. Yeah. Well, that's, that's the first thing they noticed. Right? And the same with Kenton's from, but more, I think more, more, more in this area. They're noticing that you have predisposition and I've seen it with my clients and I've seen with my students for 28 years. And if I have a class, oh, every day, one of those 28 people in 30 have a tendency to diabetic or prediabetic or something. Wow. And you can see it in their bodies in a way. You know, they're generally overweight, they're generally heavier weight on the waist. Um, so those are, I mean there's signs, right? But tell us Oregon in our bodies and okay, what to look for.

Vanessa Musi: 00:56:21 Those are some of them. And just our overall state of energy. Right? How do we feel? What's going on? So there is, so hypoglycemia is a pre prediabetes, right? It's the two levels before. So that's kind of how it starts for many people. But many people don't know that. They never took it blood test. Right. Or they didn't realize that they were feeling dizzy or had a headache or just kind of felt off, you know? And it's... They thought it was something else. They thought they'd never pinpointed that it was hypoglycemia and then suddenly they're diabetic. Right. Um, so diabetes starts 20 years before. Most people don't know that. Wow. So it starts, and most people start with that hypoglycemia and then you can become a prediabetic, which that means is so your blood sugar instead of being low starts getting higher. So that happened to me in November last year.

Vanessa Musi: 00:57:21 It was pretty interesting because I was considered myself, well, I have hypoglycemia, I have low blood sugar, I just have to watch my sugars and watch my carbohydrates. And you know, the exercise, it's a lifestyle condition. All of these that we're mentioning, our lifestyle conditions and we have to exercise more. We have more water, sleep, better know, more self care, all that kind of inbred. And so, yeah. So I was pretty much watching my food as much as I could. I mean, I'll be honest, there was days that I would eat it ice cream or I would eat a Brownie or a tart or a pie or something. Right. And I splurge, well, I have hypoglycemic. It's not a problem. Right? If the blood sugar goes height, I don't think it's going to happen. Right. I was always comfortable in that spot. And then suddenly I had a student come out of nowhere and she said, Oh, I'm working for a diabetic company and we'd be with these glucometers and I'd like to give you one.

Vanessa Musi: 00:58:25 And I said, Whoa, what a nice presence. Eight one. And so the glucometer arrived and I pinched my finger and it was 186 wow. So yeah, it was pretty crazy. Yeah, it was. It was broth because I realized, Oh my God, I'm diabetic. So I realized I had like, I was probably diabetic already because one 86 is already a high number. I immediately went to the doctor and she, and he said, you're prediabetic, which means they do a blood test that's really three months and it's very accurate. It's called your hemoglobin hemoglobin. A one t and it measures your exact blood sugar of three months. It's a very accurate test and it tells you what, what's going on. Right. And I do records all the blood sugar last three months. So I was pre-diabetic and I was 6.3 and 6.5 you're diabetic. So I was like line before and it was pretty crazy.

Vanessa Musi: 00:59:30 And I realized, Oh my God, I've got to do something radical. Right. So that's what prediabetes is, is, is one step before and then they run a lot series of lab tests to see your insulin resistant if you are not producing insulin, if like what's going on. Exactly. What's the cause of that? And that's kind of what what, and then I was able to reverse it and six months with diet. Yeah. Wow. Wow. So then it just dropped back down to hypoglycemia. No, I dropped back. It drops back to, I mean I'm still considered prediabetic because it's a, it's a condition that honestly gave, you've got it every single day in everything you eat. You have to be very aware of what you're reading. Right. Because like even if I go to coffee shop and I were a Cappuccino, that milk that I have will spike my blood sugar or not.

Vanessa Musi: 01:00:27 Right. What kind of milk do you use now? Just real quick. I wanted to ask. Oh, well I tried to have all almond milk, but it's hard because it's usually full of sugar or it's, I mean, if you go to the coffee shops, that's why. Why I want him to do my own bakery cafe because they there have five monks. I don't drink soy. Yeah. And I, and or they have sugars or there's milk with sugar. I mean it was, has a lot of carbs. Right. That's actually what I've been drinking. That's why I was asking. Cause I mean, yeah, I know it's a challenging thing. I mean if you do that, you have to live into your carbs and other in other parts of the meal have every day. Right. So because everything builds up and then that's up. So, yeah. And it really depends on what your blood sugar is that day.

Vanessa Musi: 01:01:12 Like today was mine was 103 which is high. And I like to keep it under 90 so I feel better. I just have more energy, more mental clarity and, and everything affects it. So sleep, walking or not doing exercise, drinking water. I mean it is a lifestyle thing. So yeah, I have to monitor my blood sugar every day. I've got a and make great choices, food, seven cups of vegetables a day and just just kind of feel, you know, no snacking between meals, that kind of thing. Just going to the right restaurants if you're going to splurge, splurge as well, but no one to do it and how to do it and it's just very a very mindful condition I'm going to say. Yeah, so that's pre diabetes. Okay. I was going to ask you a couple of followup questions to that around how someone could determine or how you would, what you would recommend to someone if they might be interested in finding out about being a pre diabetic or diabetic. How, how would they, did kind of determine, is it because you know, some of the symptoms when I was researching it, you know, it's symptoms that you could potentially feel in all kinds of things. And

Vanessa Musi: 01:02:31 I'm curious if there's the general, right. Yeah, right. Yeah. I think the clear symptoms is you go to the, you go to the bathroom, he a lot, right? I mean like a lot and a lot. I mean, you just went and you want to go back and do it and go get like immediately. I mean, it's kind of bizarre. No. Like you'd like, you're going to the bathroom like every hour or every 30 minutes. It's a lot. That's how frequent and that's, and you're really, really, really thirsty. Like, like thirsty I haven't drank water in like three days. Nothing. Okay. When you haven't. Yes. Good. Okay. Yeah, probably drank water like an hour ago. Um, that's two main symptoms and others' headaches. Another one is like you'd wake up at night, so you were like, like something's already gone. Right. Um, so you didn't rust completely. Um, another one is tired or like really, really, really, really tired.

Vanessa Musi: 01:03:33 Like you wake up in the morning like, oh my God, I just did. I didn't sleep. All right. Right. Um, that's another one that I would very clearly point out and maybe another one would be like a huge craving for sugar. Like you want to be like the whole pie and you want to eat like all the sprinkle cupcakes. Okay. That's kind of what I was having like the month before I was diagnosed with. Yeah, that'd be neat. I would stop by a bakery like things I generally then do and I would eat two pies to a small pies. Right. Yeah. But I wanted to like immediately, you know, in those of a huge level, right. That my body was demanding huge levels of sugar in a crazy way. Yeah. Okay. Yeah.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:04:18 And what do you recommend as far as someone who is interested in, you know, what, what sort of the best path is to just go to the doctor and do some blood work or you know, what, what, is there a, are there easier ways for people to learn or to, to determine if they are, um, you were talking about a glucometer and things like that. Are there easier ways for people to do that or is it just go to your doctor and,

Vanessa Musi: 01:04:43 well, a glucometer is really easy and really simple. And I mean, I mean do you kinda need to know numbers, right? You need to know the ranges or, I mean you can Google that, just know anything above a hundred is not ideal. So you have to be under 90 and that's one way to do it. One way to go is go to your, your general doctor or your primary care physician or your, I mean, my case, it was my gynecologist, right? I honestly, I'm not going a person that goes to the doctor every six months. And I was going from my, I had a total hysterectomy, so I was going hormones. Luckily that's how I found this because they were working a lot of tests and I mentioned that my dad was diabetic and I was like concerned about blood sugar. And I asked the doctor, you know, practically asked him, can you run all the lab work for that? Right. Yeah. And I think you have to be in, this is what I learned in my life. You've had to be an advocate for your own health. Doctors might not think about those things. Right? I mean, especially if you're going to something else. Um, so I think as a client or patient, you have to demand that me practically asked for this lab work and, and yeah, and look for specialists and you know, I did go to a diabetes specialist and no man talk to other people and just kind of tested what works for me and, and you know, maybe sometimes trial and error and realizing, well, this worked, this didn't work. This is where I screwed up this, I over did this or you know, I wasn't very mindful of her that and have you stick for program and I mean, once you've done the tests, I'm just, it's very, you have to be very consistent. That's very distinct for sure. And it is a, it's, it's a rurally I make diabetes is called the silent death, which is terrible because, you know, when we have it, and sometimes people don't know that the, I mean, you think it's something else, right? Or I'm just tired or I'm just, you know, not feeling that great or, but it's, I think you have to be very proactive about it and just, you know, and, and, and we'll reverse it at early stages because if not, it's gonna. It's gonna get really hard, which is what happened to my dad. Right. Yeah. Right. So people don't realize that it does accumulate, it does build up and it does, it does get worse. Right. So you want to hit it at their early stages. No. Change your life condition. Right. For that. I hope I answered that question.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:07:22 Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. I just, you know, for people that might be interested in that, you know, and this was interesting to me obviously with my dad having diabetes. So you know, I think information is king, you know?

Vanessa Musi: 01:07:36 Oh yeah, yeah. And knowing our bodies because I mean, everybody's totally different, but I think there's general things that work froze. Um, you know, like not stacked snacking between meals, having early dinners. I mean, eating a lot of vegetables. I mean, just common sense things really help exercising makes our blood sugar goes down a lot. That's something I didn't realize, you know? Yeah. So there's, I mean, and everybody should have a low glycaemic life does that and I hope that makes sense because your blood sugar is high, you're going to age faster, your body oxidizes. Yeah. I mean, you just don't have Saturday,

Gabe Ratliff: 01:08:16 you're probably going to have Alzheimer's. I mean, there's a lot of things that happen with high blood sugar, so yeah.

Vanessa Musi: 01:08:21 Just in general terms, we want to keep our blood sugar low. That's why the Keto Diet is so famous. Yeah, yeah,

Gabe Ratliff: 01:08:27 yeah. My wife and I actually do a service called green chef. That's actually based here out of Colorado where the, it's the food delivery and you can choose your, um, you can choose your, your a meal options based on Diet and we do the Quito, gluten free options so that, you know, and I do, I'm a big proponent for plant based, a protein powder shakes in the morning doing like a green shake. So I do those in the morning.

Vanessa Musi: 01:08:57 Wow, that sounds really good.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:08:59 You know, salad for lunch. And I, you know, I'm not perfect. I'm not trying to paint that picture. Excuse me. Um, but you know, it's, it's something that I've been now incorporating in my life just because I also, and you know, working out things like that because I, I am aware that my parent has this affliction, right. And that that is part of it, that you have to stay on top of those things like exercise and carbs and sugars and all of those things that our body doesn't process as well as, you know, veggies, proteins and those kinds of things. So it's something that we're trying to be, I head on and be more on the offense than defense, finding out too late so that we can stay on top of it. So, you know, like I said, I mean we also are foodies similar similarly.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:09:55 So you know, we enjoy food and you know, if it's special occasions or if we're traveling or if we're doing things like that or if it's just, you know, just one of those you've had a rough week or something and you're like, I just am really craving this. I'm not too hardcore on sweets. Uh, fortunately for me, but I also like to bake. Like I had told you before we started, I, you know, I worked on some shows on cooking and baking and when I started working on them, like with King Arthur flour and gluten-free girl and some of these people in the industry, I was demystified for me.

Vanessa Musi: 01:10:32 Yes.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:10:33 And I s I s cause I already liked cooking, but then I fell in love with baking cause I was like, oh this is amazing. And as I got into baking, I realized there's a little bit of a downfall to getting into baking because baking is not really great for you. Right. Generally that, which is part of what I was so great about having you on the show because generally it's, you know, cause there's a lot of times what I'd have to do is, you know, bake something and then give it to somebody and just be like, here, I'll, I'll taste it and then you take it or I wouldn't even taste it, you know, I would or not, you know, have any of it. I would just have the taster of it and give them the, the main dish or whatever it was. Whether it was bread, cause I love baking bread, uh, as well as sweets.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:11:15 But I really love baking bread and you know, doing homemade pizzas and things like that. And so, but then I started doing the same thing. I started getting into gluten free versions and you know, playing around with those and it, it was one of those things where I was like, oh, I love doing this. I love this sort of a zen calm that comes over you when you get into baking and, and you're, you know, and just the, the, the tactility of it. There's just something about it where cooking is similar, but there's just something about, you know, the working with the doe and then the baking process and the precision with your ingredients, your, your wet and dry ingredients and everything and just how they work together in the, the chemical. Yeah, the chemical reaction, right? Like all that is like really, really fascinating to me.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:12:00 But then there's the, you know, it's done and you get this really great smelling kitchen and you're like, I really want to eat that, but then you're, you know, you're like, ah, it's probably not good for me. But yeah. So that's, that's where this conversation is so is so fascinating to me because of what you're doing in this space where people can still bake but can have this healthier lifestyle and can, can be able to keep there, keep their sugar levels in the right place and be able to live a, a really, you know, healthy and, and, and, and longer life from what you were just sharing. Right? Like, cause if, if you do keep it in those areas that are bad for you, I mean it's like you were talking about you can age quicker, you have potential for Alzheimer's. I mean there's so many negative impacts that can occur to you and, and they, they might not be now. Right. People are very instant gratification. A base, especially in today's society with social media and the Internet and mobile phones and everything. I mean with tech technology, people are very, I want it now. Well just like with health, right? They want to just get, look sexy and feel great and everything, but they're not thinking about, you know, they might be younger and not thinking about the 20 years of their life. Has been setting them up to become prediabetic or diabetic

Vanessa Musi: 01:13:20 for sure. I mean, for sure it's a process and I'm, I'm really glad you mentioned the, you know, the, the, the, the craft of baking and process of doing it and that, yeah, when I started baked traditional, I will hike. I love it baking, but am I gonna eat it? Right. And then I felt like I was conflicted with sugar and then I felt, well, how can I enjoy this process that I love? And also then I can eat it. I'm not going to eat the whole thing, right. I'm not gonna eat all the cookies I made or all the brownies or whatever, but, and I enjoy that I'm making something that I can eat right then I can feel, but it's delicious and at the same time, you know, elevated all sorts of levels and that's, yeah, I really, really appreciate that because that was my goal for sure.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:14:11 Yeah. I was gonna I was gonna kind of switch gears again a little bit here because I wanted to start talking a little bit around what you're doing now and where, what, you know, what you're offering to people and how this is all kind of gotten us through what we've talked about around health and, and your, your career and everything and how that's led the way. Do you even, you know, you, we even talked about your messengers that have, you know, spoken to you around, um, developing and working with ingredients that heal, you know, and I, I love that. I just thought that was so great that you brought that up. Yeah, I love the term you use too with noble baking.

Vanessa Musi: 01:14:50 Oh yeah. Well that was, that was fascinating. Yeah. So I kind of matched my footie world with my self development, with, with nutrition, with sensory, all that together. I put it all in term Nobel making and I thought, you know, first of all, everything I make, I want it to taste amazing. I'm, I kill for, you know, taste and texture is huge. And then it's got to be nutritious. And that, so that order, right. I never wanted it to be nutritious first. Ben, Ben Delicious. That never worked. And so the, I mean that's what I've created all the recipes for and my classes and workshops. I do workshops here in Austin, Texas, in English and in Spanish. That's been really interesting because different cultures, different needs, different language is different. Everything, different communities, different expectations. And yeah, I mean we, the Mexican community wants something that American wants something totally different.

Vanessa Musi: 01:16:02 It's been really hard to juggle that. So I divided until there's class in Spanish class. In English there's advanced classes or classes for beginners. I go to Mexico and teach classes to 130 people and you know, so I do that every like six first nine months. And then work with brands to develop recipes and know, showcase or ingredients in my workshops. I mean, wouldn't that I love and I, and using for years and after of been a helping them, you know, the Mexicans to come into the states and then the Americans go to Mexico in terms of products. And so that's pretty interesting. I love working with brands and you know, highlighting their ingredients, products. It's, and part of my Twitter for 28 years. And I really enjoy that part. Testing their ingredients or anything, you know, from us famous knife to a, you know, great chocolate, that kind of stuff.

Vanessa Musi: 01:17:03 And Yeah. And so now, I mean, we bought a property in East Austin, which is like a very trendy neighborhood. It was really interesting. I found that I was googling til three in the morning every day and I was like obsessed with finding out we were going to buy our second house. That's Kinda hard started and we thought, you know, cause my house is exploding, there's finds it everywhere. There's gadgets everywhere. It's not functional and it's a house. Right. Um, so I thought at first I thought I'll rent the space, right? I couldn't find a kitchen space in Austin to rent. And I'm like, oh my God, there isn't anything I can rent in seven years. Right. Wow. And I'm like, this is insane. I mean, like there's no kitchen space. So I thought, well, so I told my husband, listen, we've got to do something because I can't get my workshops.

Vanessa Musi: 01:17:54 I can't keep traveling. All the, you know, like Karen five luggages with what, 500 pounds of ingredients and I've got to do something more functional and easier and people can come to Austin, take the classes and I want to do a school. And so we thought we'd sell our house where we live and you know, move into another house that had a guest house garden. That was our original idea. We never found that. And then we realized, well Austin is totally different and that doesn't work. And so I hired a realtor and then we started to look for properties. And so we realized early on that they had to be commercial and mixed use where I could, you know, legitimately have a commercially kitchen space. So that changed the, you know, the search a lot. Yeah. It took us one year literally to find the one property that we could afford.

Vanessa Musi: 01:18:51 Yeah. And that had the codes and that would, yeah, no, have the zoning and the, it can be used commercially. And I don't know how we were able to bye cause it was prime location and find, know price, you know real well. Real estate in Austin is like la in the 80s right now. Yeah. So it's very hot and if you don't buy it now it's going to be on affordable and next few months I was googling until three in the morning and I found it and I'm like this is insane. Right. Okay. So I bought this house, it was 1961 and it, this is a church, it's really funky. It's almost a tear down and right. Pretty bad condition then. So we, I don't know how we got the money and we bought it and then we realized that had us best those we had take out those best those, I saw that on a page.

Vanessa Musi: 01:19:43 You saw that, I saw that on Instagram. Your video. It was crazy. Yeah it was. I was, I was freaking out. You have no idea. Yeah. You seemed calm in the video. Oh well I already had a, you know, it was storm inside of my thoughts. Yeah. Yeah. And we went through that. I mean for me, it's my first experience in and remodeling and, and honestly, you never know what you're getting into. And there always a lot of surprises. I mean, we all know that I'd seen all this flip flop shows. Yeah. Right. Yeah. And even if it's fascinating, it's pretty scary what you're getting into and there's a lot of money in every sense of the word. So anyway, we're probably going to have to turn it down and, and then realize we need parking inside the lot. Um, yeah, that's a lot of a chunk of the money or that.

Vanessa Musi: 01:20:39 And then, so anyway, we want to develop that into of the first healthy baking school in the world and that also in the back space. And it's also a place that has a bakery cafe because, okay. I mean, yeah, the cooking school is great and a lot of people will come and you know, classes or, you know, build up pastry program instead of going to, I went to a traditional pastry program in Chicago and you know, the French pastry school and graduated with honors and it was $50,000 for six months. And there was like no return on investment on that one. Right? And then I had to adapt all the recipes and you know, that was hard. So now a lot of the people who want to study this are not going to go through that path. It's kind of like you need two careers, right?

Vanessa Musi: 01:21:28 Two programs. And I think there's a better way to do it. So that's where I'm developing in this pastry school. Like instead of going through the traditional pastry, then adapting recipes, just go to my school and do that directly. And you can go to the Vegan or Paleo or Keto or take four classes and implement them immediately into your work space or wherever you want to do with that. Um, so short, short classes, short programs that are very practical and other recipe are gray and white techniques. You can sell them or make them or whatever. And so that's one of the areas. And another area is, you know, making products for the bakery cafe and yeah, scale the business at another level because I can't, this is $1 million investment, how way you look at it. And that's a lot. Yeah. And so it's got to be scalable. So maybe develop one recipe that's sold online or you know, packaged or something, you know, like a cookie or you know, my husband insists it's gotta be one of my Brown, he's a nine cyst. It's gotta be one of my Quito, chocolate chip cookies. We have that. Yeah. Yeah. Know that discussion every day, you know. So I mean, something that I, you know, typical, you go to whole foods and I can't eat any of the products anyways, so, well, there's nothing that I love and I can, it's my needs specifically.

Vanessa Musi: 01:23:05 So, yeah, something like that. I love coffee and coffee's huge in Austin. I think there's great space for that. And you know, Macho is, I'm nothing I love and I think there's a great niche for great nut milks that are low-glycemic that we can all drink that are not loaded with sugar or carbs and yeah, that kind of stuff. Yeah. Yeah. I know you brought that up earlier about the milks and, and you know, at coffee shops and things, and we make our coffee at home. And that was part of the reason is because we also just switched milks to alternatives and my wife drinks coconut and she does the unsweetened coconut. But then I, I switched to oatmeal cause I was like, oh I love this cause this is, this keeps the flavor of the coffee delicious is milk with coffee. Yeah. Because I'm not, I don't do soy either.

Vanessa Musi: 01:24:05 And um, the almond is a little almond di for me. So I was like, I started trying the oat and I was like, oh this works because it keeps the flavor of the coffee that I want without sugar or anything. Um, and so yeah, when we got into that conversation I was like tech on it, you know, cause I'm, I'm, it's like you can use it to be true. I know it was, it was, I mean that's one, that's one of the beauties of having a glucometer, you know, what's going on that day and you can, we have a lower blood sugar that they can, yeah, it'd be more, you have more options, right? Yeah. And if it's high, will you just restricted that day? That's kind of what I've learned. Um, so we'll work around that and, or make sure you're, you know, you do more exercise or, you know, yeah.

Vanessa Musi: 01:24:55 There's ways to deal with that. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. I'm glad that you brought that up. Um, one of the things I was going to say about your dilemma around the Brownie and your cookie is right. Well, I was gonna say yeah, but you know, you would be curious what your, what your fans and your followers think of the two that they would prefer to come out first. Cause I imagine you would do one and then, and then d do the other, I know my husband will say what makes the most money, right? He's always into this. I mean, you've got an interpreter and a start up. So he's always scaled businesses. So, yeah. I mean he's looking at that like, how are we going to scale that investment? Right? Yeah. I love how you love it. You're like the support that you're having with it. You know, that, that there's that support system there in that way, right. Of like we're helping you, uh, and support that cause my wife is in corporate and so I, I definitely, you know, hit her, hit her up with con con, uh, questions and we conversations all the time

Vanessa Musi: 01:26:04 about things that I'm either working on or developing or about to roll out or whatever. But, uh, it was just nice that you have that type of rapport where he's, he's feeding that the way that he is, you know, and supporting this. Oh yeah. 28 years remission. I mean, I always joke that there would be not even a tree in that property without him because he is very creative and how he, okay. I was just overwhelmed. We didn't have money. I mean, I'll be honest, we didn't have money for the down payment of anything. Yeah. W we didn't have, we had like $30,000 in the bank that does nothing. Right, right. You can't do anything with that. So we didn't have 70,000 for the downpayment and when the, we found that property and you have to act really fast isn't, they're going to go immediately.

Vanessa Musi: 01:26:52 Right. He just refund them the house where we live in and like just very resourceful, you know, is one of that that was kind of people are really, really creative and money and whatever it takes, he'll make it work kind of thing. Yeah. We started a school here in Austin, so he'd already dumped him pretty crazy and successfully and yeah. So for sure I couldn't do it without him. I love that. I have to give you some credit too though, because you talked about how in the early days you were having to fund those schools, right. Where you having to rent the, the school to be able to do your classes. Oh, so yeah, I will give myself credit for that one. Yeah. There's plenty to give you credit for it, but I just wanted to call that out because you know, that was something I was, I just loved hearing when you, when you mentioned that earlier.

Vanessa Musi: 01:27:44 Um, so obviously the, the two of you really have that ability to combine, you know, w this strengths that you each have to, to keep pushing forward and, and like getting out there. What you're trying to do in the world. I love it. I love it. No, thank you. I appreciate that. Yeah. So you also, what's that? Well, I think we're a good team for sure. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, you look adorable. I loved your photo. I love the photo that you put up to have your dad on father's Day. That was adorable. I know. That's, yeah. Very cool. Yeah. The other thing I wanted to bring up is you also have a Kito ebook. Is that right? Coming out? Yeah. It's okay. I mean, it's been taking forever. Yeah. Holding a deadline. But, um, it's going to be an English because my first ebook book is in Spanish and that was like, it's really hard when you have, um, by cultural background and by cultural community.

Vanessa Musi: 01:28:41 And do you post things? Do you post in Spanish? If you did a video in English, sugar, you then do one. I mean, you can't do both really, really hard unless you have a huge team. Right? I mean, I chose English because I'm in Austin. The school is going to be here. And you know, most of my clients in Mexico, my ideal client, it's both languages, right? Yeah. So I've really defined my ideal client in a way that somebody like me, it's, it's two languages that can right work in two languages and I mean cultural traveled, you know, I mean fluent the same thing, right? Yeah. So yeah. And that's part of my, the agreement with my husband is like, okay, we're doing the school but ho do they book in English? And Yeah. So that's coming out and it's going to be like a selection of my Keto recipes and I going to give it a little bit of a twist because after doing a lot of Kia recipes and things that I've done myself, you know, like low-glycemic facts, nothing. And I've realized that on the sweeteners side, people want, okay, have, you know, the natural sugars and then the, sure, we're all holes and so I want to give them options. Right? Yeah. Yeah. I think there's, there's a need for both. Yeah.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:30:01 Nice.

Vanessa Musi: 01:30:02 Yeah,

Gabe Ratliff: 01:30:02 that's great. Well. And that, that allows people to have that flexibility, which is great, but it's still sticks to what you're trying to put out there for people to keep that healthy lifestyle.

Vanessa Musi: 01:30:11 Yeah. So it's kind of like, how do you go from extreme Kiddo to Paleo kind of thing? Right. So, because I've got a lot of clients who say, well, yeah, I like the Keto recipes, but I know I don't want to use sugar alcohols, which I think it's a bubble that's going to explode in a few months or years. I think it's, I mean, I think we're going back to natural things a lot and unprocessed sugars. So even if you're diabetic prediabetic, which you need to stick to the zero waste Mick screeners, you also need to stick to something that's not going to affect their gut. Okay. The long run. And so I like cooking and show her a lot and you're going gonna use a small amount and you're going to have pastry sometimes. Right. Once in a while. That's great. And don't overuse it. But, um, yeah, I want to give them those options for those reasons.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:31:04 Nice.

Vanessa Musi: 01:31:05 Yeah.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:31:05 That's fantastic. I love it. Yeah.

Vanessa Musi: 01:31:07 Yeah. And yeah, I mean, traveling and doing more classes, that's an honor project I want to do. And you know, B, a brand, you know. Yeah. Not every trade show, that kind of thing. That's kind of expand my horizons. Well, you know, being a brand ambassador with companies and you know, just being more into the world of, of this wonderful making industry and cause I think that there's a niche for that. And I think I still have to pioneer that a little more because I think clients or people in general or pre have open to this baking, but the, the pastry world, I'm not that that much in terms of companies. I think they're starting to, but it needs to be more. Yeah. So

Gabe Ratliff: 01:31:56 it's a slow process. I uh, are you familiar with Expo West?

Vanessa Musi: 01:32:01 Yes, but I haven't been and I'm dying to go and I wasn't, I was going to go this year, but I was so determined to

Gabe Ratliff: 01:32:08 save the money for the remodeling. Yup. And you know, kind of pick my battles for that. Yeah.

Vanessa Musi: 01:32:14 We had already started having a lot of expenses for Alison everything. And I'm like, well, I'm going to do it when it's,

Gabe Ratliff: 01:32:21 when it's ready and I can, you know, connect people when it's okay, the school is ready and there's an immediate connection. Right. And

Vanessa Musi: 01:32:29 that would have been smarter. Oh, I'm going to open a school.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:32:34 Right. Well, yeah, it's a longer term play though, right? When you long term play and honestly it takes longer than when things are once right? Yeah. Yeah. I actually used to work for new hope network. They're based out of boulder and I used to, I used to shoot the expos. Um, Andy was a senior graphic designer there, so I was doing a lot of the graphic work for the expo itself and then was doing, you know, web and email stuff. Yeah. But there was so great because I got to see, you know, as the natural organic industry was really starting to grow. Oh, the white waves, the, you name it, I mean Cascadian farms and you know, uh, Amy's and they'll just, yeah. Yeah. And it just keeps going. It just keeps going. It's, it was, I just love seeing that it's now not the trend.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:33:31 It's becoming the norm. Like you were saying, you know, now it's, people are really, it's been a process and it's still going. But people really are starting to get that we were on a wrong path for decades and that we needed to to course correct in a big way. And you know, when people's health starts to tank and you've got things like, you know what has happened in your family, right? And just you find out through what essentially is a fluke. You just happened to be at the doctor and like you said, you have your own self interests at heart and you're like, hey, can you just check on this while I'm here because I know this about my family and I really do care about that. And then you know, you find that out and that's when you know, the, the flag, the red flags start to go off for people is it's always when it finally hits home and it, and it's actually affecting their life. So, you know, it's been a great thing to see people like yourself out there making these changes and es and the perseverance. 28 years. I mean, Kudos, you know, back when it was not cool.

Vanessa Musi: 01:34:41 I know I was going to change careers again at one point. I didn't say that, but I was a little bit frustrated. I'm like, oh, I, I mean I hit, I hit a the point where I'm like, I'm going to do some completely different,

Vanessa Musi: 01:34:54 I'm going to change two ears again and I, and yeah, luckily I didn't do that. Yes, yes, yes. Luckily you didn't. Yeah. Oh good. Thank you. Thank you. Okay. If nobody else says it to you today, I'm saying thank you for your work. Thank you, Greg. How cool. So I was going to take these last, just a couple moments here. We're going to wrap up well, but I was like asking a couple of just, you know, more fun questions. Uh, and then we'll, we'll wrap up the conversation here. Uh, when, when you, you said you, you've got time for just a little bit longer, so I was gonna ask, do you have a current favorite recipe that you like to make? Oh yeah, that's a good question. I own two brownies. Yeah. I guess because they're so immediate than I'm just obsessed with it. I don't use it, the texture and chewiness.

Vanessa Musi: 01:35:50 Okay. I mean it's like practical stuff and I want that. I'm always like, I have like what, 50 Brownie recipes and quality 50 chocolate chip cookie recipes. Wow. So, I mean that's something that I'm like, everyday I can make that right. Yeah. And donuts is something I'm really passionate about. Yeah. I don't know why I started making these donuts for this company and then they became viral in the classes and then I had like a Vegan version of Paleo version, a Kia version. Whole grain version. Yeah. And then a macho version. And then, so that's like a trend that I really liked him classes. So it's kind of a longer story and for than what you're asking. But um, yeah, if I had to make something right now it'd be a Tagliatelle cookie for sure.

Vanessa Musi: 01:36:43 I was going to ask what would be just your first thing that comes to your mind, what would be some advice that you would give to an up and coming chef or pastry chef that, that wants to get into the industry and is, has that same passion that, that you did as a young person. What, what would you say is kind of the top thing that comes to your mind is some advice for them? Wow. Three things I would say no. Somebody told me back when I studied to be a chef, not to be negative or anything or okay or burst the bubble, but realize it's really hard and it's physically demanding and it's if you want to meet, I mean if you want to make it, he wouldn't be a really good chef. Pretty taxing on your body and are realize and there are no short cuts.

Vanessa Musi: 01:37:34 And I would say, so that's, that's two things. You know, we realize there was a process and that takes time and it's a lot of practice, right? And it's one of those careers takes a lot of year of a lot of volunteer work, a lot unpaid jobs and a lot of that kind of stuff and are a lot of hard work and that there are no shortcuts because a lot of the people who come to me for these questions like to be a chef, they want to do it. Like in one day, I think I took a class at NAM teaching classes or riots or I want to develop a, I'm going to open a bakery because I took a class. Right? It's, I think it's way more deeper than that. And to be a chef, right. There is a process and it starts from the bottom. I think you have to build up on that.

Vanessa Musi: 01:38:29 Another one would be to learn from the best. I think that's another thing I learned early on and have an intention, right? Like what are you gonna do with that career? I mean, what's your goal? Because a lot of people who come to me and I don't think they really know what they're going to do right then. I mean not 10 of that, you know, like I want to be a pastry chef to do what specifically. So that's kind of the hot hardcore questions. Like if you enroll in university and you don't know what you're going to study, Oh, what do you want to major in? I mean like immediate, new things would be easier kind of thing. Right? Yeah. Same thing here, you know, are you gonna do with this path? I think it's easier, do it better. And I know that sometimes you're not gonna, you're not gonna know immediately.

Vanessa Musi: 01:39:21 But I would definitely dedicate time, soul searching. I mean, I did a lot of therapy and I went to a lot, a lot of self development classes and workshops and trainings and things not related to cooking to just, I mean, to learn who I am and how I feel and how I, and you know, like what my values are and all that is that's really important in your career and it's really going to define, you know, who you're going to be as a phase three chef or as a chef and yeah, make better choices and it is an expensive career. I'm going to say that. And it's not so rewarding monetarily. I mean, not really well paid. So that's something you have to be very realistic about. I like to tell people what they're getting into and, and then a good sentence, not that I want to take their dreams away, but I'm just want to meet you.

Vanessa Musi: 01:40:22 Very realistic. And it is hard work and it's hard work on people are enjoying themselves and it's, you're working in holidays and you're, I mean, it is that kind of a career, right? Um, it's, it's very demanding. And so I don't think it's for everybody. And I think, and you are tested when things get rough, right. And the schedules, the, the hours of the standing up, the, there's no in this bakery kind of thing. I mean, yeah, that lifestyle is not for everybody. So I'd suggest too many people to try it out, you know, like do you do an internship, go and volunteer in a bakery, try it out for one month, we'll do the realize because I think we are bombarded with these wonderful shows on TV, sound very glamorous and their reality is really different. It's just the process, right? Pretty long and deep and, and you need a lot of grit to go through it. I mean, if you're going to do it well, I think, and you're, you're going to be a really upstanding chef. You have to go through that and yeah, it's a lot of work.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:41:36 Yeah.

Vanessa Musi: 01:41:37 Yeah. I mean, and I think it's important to say that because we don't talk about it too much. And especially for a woman and I think it's a little bit even harder because it is a lifestyle and there's a lot of sacrifice and a lot of things you don't. Yeah. Right. So, yeah.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:41:57 Yeah, absolutely. That was a very great answer. I was actually going to ask, you know, did, did you have any other, you know, kind of final words or anything else that you'd like to say before we wrap? That seemed like a really great answer, but I didn't know if there's anything else you might want.

Vanessa Musi: 01:42:12 Oh my gosh. Well, we could probably talk for hours, I'm sure. Yes, ma'am. Yeah. Let's see. I'm trying to think. Can you think of anything?

Gabe Ratliff: 01:42:22 Uh, no. I mean it's just really, if there's anything else that you'd like to share or, or if, I mean, I feel like we covered a whole lot, but I just, I was like to give that, that last little option to people. If there's anything like last parting words I'd like to share.

Vanessa Musi: 01:42:35 Well, I'm sure I'm going to think of something later on, but, um, well I think just listen to your intuition and connect with your higher power and, and just figuring out why you're here. The swirl to do whatever it is. I mean, you're a chef or not a chef or if you're creative. So just get in contact with that and see where that is and explore. I mean, there's huge power of mean curious, curious and, and researching. And I think exploring world, the world in different areas. And I think that's something that we are losing a lot. Nope. Maybe because of internet or social media or something. I think, yeah, there's a, there's a great value in getting to know ourselves really deeply and connecting to that mission and that the thing that lights us up. I mean, I think I did mention that I had a near death experience, but I did and I thought my life pass when I was 23 years old and I, I realized that I was given a second tense. And I see that life is so short, there's really no time to lose to do what we're here to do. And some people don't connected with that with. So, and I think that's, that's something that drives me every day because I really realize that I was able to, to hit that rock bottom and see, oh my gosh, I could've died but I didn't. And I'm so glad I'm here and I can, you know, pursue that and I can't waste time on trivial things or you know, not do things right. Yeah. So I think it's time is now, right? You're here. Yeah. Yeah, exactly. And I'm really grateful for your invitation, Dave. Thank you so much. Oh, thank you. I mean, oh my gosh, what a great conversation. I just thank you for being so open and honest and, and real about what this journey has been like for you. And thanks for all the great insights and, and for the work that you're doing. I just appreciate that so much. My last question, I was just going to ask, where can people find you on the interwebs that want to learn more about what you're doing or take classes or, oh, thank you.

Vanessa Musi: 01:44:58 Well My, my preferred social media is Instagram for sure. I think I love that space. Um, we'll see you're on Facebook, Vanessa Musi, official Facebook page. So I have a youtube channel, which I don't do that much. Okay. It's Vanessa Musi and yeah, I mean my web page, a lot of people don't, going to that, there's, I post my best recipes there at vanessamusi.com. I also have a shop where, because I get these questions all the time, like why did I buy the oven you recommend, where do I get this? Where they get that so I've done that. You know selection of my personal resources, collection of products over there at vanessamusi.com/shop and yeah, I think that's pretty much it. Yeah. I'd love to connect with you guys on Instagram and yeah, let me know if you think of a favorite product I should developed.

Vanessa Musi: 01:46:02 It's not cookies or brownies, maybe a keto bread. Right, right.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:46:08 Yeah, you heard it here folks. You heard it here. Exactly. If you've got any ideas, feel free to suggest them and thank you again so much Chef, I really appreciate your time and this conversation and I love the work you're doing and and just keep it up and keep that perseverance going cause you're, you're making waves out there.

Vanessa Musi: 01:46:28 Aw, thank you Gabe. This was wonderful. I really appreciate your conversation and your questions and your time and for having connected on Linkedin and invited me to your community. Thank you all. Check your blood sugar. That's something nobody says. I think we all need to do.

Gabe Ratliff: 01:46:50 Well that's it for this episode. If this is your first time listening, thank you so much for being here. I really hope you enjoyed the show. The Vitalic Project podcast comes out bi-weekly and is available every other Thursday for your enjoyment and all links and show notes for this episode can be found at vitalicproject.com. If you haven't yet, please subscribe to the show and leave a rating or review on iTunes. If you'd like to be a guest or know someone, that would be a great fit, please go to vitalicproject.com/guest. If you want to follow us, you can find us online by searching @vitalicproject. And thanks again for listening. Until next time, keep being vitalic!