2nd September 2017

Did someone say free food?

Reading time: 3 mins

Free food for everyone

I spent most of August in Italy. And whilst I was away, I reignited my interest in foraging for wild food. 

On the way back from this incredible beach...

 Spiaggia San Michele

Spiaggia San Michele eyes struck gold:


My primal vision locked onto a plump purple fig and before I knew it was in my mouth!

Three years ago I got pretty familiar with fig trees while living on a farm in Italy.

Did you know they can bring you out in a rash and make you really itchy? Not that I let a little itch get in between me and a mountain of fresh figs!



This book has also been a source of inspiration for me:

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The Wild Life is John Lewis-Stempel's account of twelve months eating only food shot, caught or foraged from the fields, hedges, and brooks of his forty-acre farm.

Reading about his adventures got me thinking. I want to take advantage of nature's free food! Since I injured my knee, I got lazy! So I've decided to get busy with some foraging.


Let's take a look at what’s up for grabs in August and September around The British Isles:

  • Blackberries
  • Crab apples
  • Apples and pears
  • Greengage plums
  • Damson plums
  • Elderberries
  • Hawthorn berries
  • Hazelnuts sometimes called cobnuts
  • Beech nuts
  • Sweet chestnuts
  • Acorns
  • Rose hips
  • Slows
  • Bilberries

My parents took us blackberry picking at the end of the summer holidays but I didn't know there was so much more on offer!


It takes a bit of time to harvest wild food, but whilst I'm at it, I'll be killing many birds with just one stone. A concept that movement expert Katy Bowman calls "stacking".

Whilst foraging I'll also be:

  • Exercising my body (lunging, squatting, stretching, carrying loads etc)
  • Making contact with nature, which is essential to human health and sanity
  • Supporting healthy sleep by balancing hormones (cortisol and melatonin)
  • Spending quality time with family and friends (and they can help carry my bounty)
  • Making the hormone Vitamin D (yes, winter is coming!)

But it’s also about what I won’t be doing:

  • I won't be staring at a screen upsetting my sleep
  • I won't be stuck inside
  • I won't be stressing about work and other responsibilities
  • I won’t be eating the ice cream that’s left over in the fridge

So while I'm busy this September, squirrelling away as much free food as possible, what will you be doing? Fancy joining me? 

A word of caution

If you feel inspired to start foraging, it is important to take care, no one wants to poison themselves (or their kids). Find an experienced friend or use a book like “Food for Free” by Richard Mabey.


Best of the Month

Best book

A fascinating book from Dr Jack Kruse, a brain surgeon turned health revolutionary. Learn about the hormone 'Leptin' and the power of 'Cold Thermogenesis'! This guy is a pioneer in the field of evolutionary health.


Best podcast 

Sorry no recommendation for you this month. I needed a month off!

Best article

This headline grabbed my attention:

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The article tells a new story and timeline for human evolution and it's fascinating.

In light of recent archaeological discoveries, it seems like we've been making some serious assumptions!

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Best of YouTube

Paul Chek is a personal hero of mine, a real holistic health guru. Check out this video on stress busting tai chi circles. I recommend trying this is if you're feeling tired and stressed out. And don't let his esoteric language put you off. Just go with it and try it.

And yes I know, dodgy shorts or what?!

That's it folks.

All the best

James @