Exeleon Magazine

Neda Varbanova: Driving Happiness Through Her Nutritious Mantra

Neda Varbanova Healthy with Nedi Founder

In today’s world, our lives have become a blur due to rapid progress and development, all thanks to the information age. However, it has also tossed our health adversely, and has led to discomfort and unease. Consequently, this has nudged many individuals to embrace “eating healthy” as their new anthem in life.

One of the pioneers in making healthy meet happy is Neda Varbanova, creator of one of the finest healthy lifestyle brands — Healthy with Nedi. Her primary goal of endorsing healthy food is to create happier lives in all aspects — body, mind, and soul. As a certified health coach, Nedi also embraces the qualities of a dynamic leader with aplomb.

According to her, a deep-rooted passion for work, integrity, and a clear vision goes a long way. She is an optimist who supports those around her and practices empathy at every instance. “It is important to recognize and respond to the emotions of other people,” she affirms as this is one important way to inspire and influence the people around her.

History of healthy destination

As a young girl, Neda moved from Bulgaria to the United States. This transition was not smooth for a 11-year-old as she had to accept new surroundings, resulting in a cultural shock. One such incident that stands out in her memory is the numerous fast-food joints in the US. She recollects, “I had never seen so many fast-food joints… they were on every corner.”

After a few years, this led her to start the first health club in high school. This decision stemmed from her mother and grandmother’s homemade fresh meals as she was hell bent to make a change in the community.

Neda then went on to improve the cafeteria lunch menu and add healthier options to the salad bar. She also incorporated pre-order lunch choices for students which included different vegetables. “I felt so passionate and proud to create a healthier environment in our school,” she recollects.

Dealing with downturns

Neda Varbanova believes that healthy eating, fitness, and a positive outlook are the keys to realizing true health. After founding Healthy with Nedi in 2015, her blog has evolved into a lifestyle brand where you can go to find healthy recipes, nutritional advice, fitness tips, beauty tips, restaurant and travel guides, and detox eBooks.

However, this wasn’t a convenient journey. She jumped on the chance to study business and marketing after being influenced by her friends even though she was keenly interested in studying nutrition. But there’s a silver lining here. She says, “I should have followed my passion for nutrition but, in a way, I am glad I got the experience of studying business and marketing which has come in handy with my company now.”

Her intention and purpose only got firmer after her bachelor’s degree, and this motivated her to continue her education. She became a certified health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and bagged her Master’s in food studies from NYU.

Elevation in life

Neda always knew in her bones that she wanted to write her own cookbook. Her hard work, perseverance, and grit to keep going made this dream possible a few months ago. “I had a clear vision of what I wanted for my book, and I am so glad I turned down offers that didn’t support my idea.”

Neda listened to her heart and kept searching for the right fit to come along. “This book is a labor of love and has so much meaning to me and my family,” she adds.

As an entrepreneur in the health space, Neda dons different hats gracefully. She says every day is different, and she loves that she is fortunate enough to create her own schedule. “I need variety in my days, and I create that!”

Once in a while, she also schedules one-on-one client calls where she focuses on their nutrition and improving their diet. Neda also spends a good chunk of her time for recipe testing, recipe writing, blog editing, shooting content and zoom work calls. “I like to balance it out like that so I can create my own schedule and fit things in wherever I am,” she adds.

Exploring healthy answers

Taking charge of new challenges, Neda had her share of voices in her own head and the looming fear of failure. Despite it all, “I always give 100% of myself”, she says emphasizing on her Virgo trait of being a perfectionist. While bringing plans to fruition, Neda feels that she can let over-analysis get the best of her.

Looking back, Neda’s advice to her younger self is resounding and clear – to get out of your comfort zone. Her desire in being challenged constantly and trying something new, especially something uncomfortable, is the catalyst to her growth. “Follow that dream and make it happen because if you wait around for the right moment, you may miss the chance,” she concludes.

However, with the mistakes and roadblocks, she believes that they are the “steppingstones to success.” She also stresses on the need to be self-aware and “recognize your weaknesses and work on improving them.”

Neda’s lived experiences have resulted in beautiful symphonies of good eating habits for her clients. Her one true piece of advice for someone aiming to lead a healthy lifestyle is this – “Know that these things take time, and a massive change won’t happen overnight.”

She is a big believer in taking small steps towards progress, instead of focusing on perfection. “Embracing a positive and open mind is also important,” Neda attests. She also encourages people to not forget to have moments of fun in the kitchen and let their creativity flow to create new recipes.

To avoid binge-eating, Neda proposes healthier alternatives to her clients. “This way I can show them that nothing is off limits. It’s about making small and smart swaps that lead to long term success,” she adds.

Gleaming opportunities

Neda and her initiative to make healthier lives a reality for countless people defines its success. Her cookbook based on the Mediterranean diet will be published in the fall of 2022. “I am super excited for everyone to get their hands on it and cook up a storm”, she says confidently.

Moreover, she plans on opening a health food café or starting a meal delivery service in the upcoming years. Her love for delivering healthy food is palpable in her vision.

Neda Verbanova is certain of one thing — “to never stop working and keep growing. After one project is done, start something new and really enjoy the ride. We have one life to live, make the best of it!”

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Visit Healthy with Nedi Website.

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