Entrepreneur, visionary, public figure and senior naturopath Hermann Keppler explains why complementary practitioners are facing a major challenge, why a drug-based approach may not hold the key to wellness and how you can help your body to heal!

In Part 1 of The Little Plantation’s Interview with Hermann Keppler, he shared his inspiring journey to becoming a naturopath (please read more here). But during Part 2 of the interview the focus shifted to the wider issue of natural therapies with Hermann revealing the depth of his passion to defend and promote them.

‘Natural therapies’ position in society has taken an interesting course’ he explained. ‘Up until about 3 years ago, natural therapies were embraced and accepted as a genuine, alternative route to health. For example, major broadcasters ran regular and popular radio programs on nutrition and mainstream newspapers frequently featured positive articles on natural health. But as complementary therapies have become more popular, it seems as though the media has turned its back on them.’

Hermann explained that many broadcasters have withdrawn programs that promote natural therapies. And newspapers articles have become more sceptical about the benefits of natural therapies. ‘In fact, many newspapers have started writing about the terrible ‘dangers’ of homeopathy and acupuncture and the Advertising Standard Agency will now no longer allow natural health practitioners to use terms such as ‘treatment’ or ‘therapy’ or to imply that they can treat medical conditions.’

I asked Hermann why he thought this shift had occurred. Hermann was cautious in his response, but clear: ‘There is a strong feeling within the natural health movement that there is a drive to denigrate the positive impact of therapies which empower people to improve their own health naturally. If you have vested interests in making a significant percentage of the population lifetime-consumers of expensive drugs, you will not welcome increasing awareness about the effectiveness of natural therapies.’

‘However there is a certain irony that denigrating natural therapies does not stem interest in them, quite the reverse in fact. And when even the World Health Organisation admits that a healthy diet has a positive impact throughout life, the tide can’t be turned back indefinitely! In my opinion, the outlook is fantastic for natural therapies, we simply have to keep up awareness through more imaginative routes.’

I noted that generally speaking there seems to be some acceptance of natural therapies’ capacity to manage minor ailments, but can natural therapies support health at every level?

‘Conventional medicine tends to make one crucial mistake – it often defines a symptom as a ‘disease’ and only treats the symptom - the mere end product - without looked at the origin of the patients’ condition. Instead it tries to suppress the symptoms leaving the original cause of the illness unaddressed.’

‘With natural therapies, the object is to give the body the tools to work towards healing itself. We ask crucial questions: Why did this symptom develop in the first place? What is its underlying cause? We look at the person as a whole, focusing on their lifestyle, diet and intake of nutrients.’

‘It is fundamentally important that the body is as strong as it can be. If the body is run down, unnourished and under stress, how can it be or stay healthy purely through the provision of chemical-based medication?’

I asked what diet we should follow and lifestyle choices we should make to obtain optimum health and give the body the strength to find its own path to wellness. ‘There is no magic formula or a ‘top 5 list of foods, herbs or nutrients’ as we are all individuals, but a natural lifestyle that incorporates regular exercise and healthy eating establishes the best foundation for good health. Stay clear of refined sugars, junk and genetically modified foods and nourish the body with energetic foods – lots of organic vegetables and fruits, sprouts, seeds and fibre. Natural is best!’

Hmm, I think I’ll stick to a plant based diet for now, how about you?

To get more information about the Advertising Standard Agency’s powers and to sign the petition against its control of natural health please follow the link provided here.


It’s funny because I actually had not planned to make this juice. But then there was a sort of competition on Instagram for ‘the best smoothie or juice’ and the competitive streak in me went into overdrive. Fuelled with adrenaline, my brain knew pretty much straight away what it wanted my body to do:

1. Go to the farmer’s market
2. Buy the most beautiful seasonal ingredients you can find
3. Challenge yourself and work with a fruit/veg you’ve never used before
4. Forage to add interest
5. Kick ass and make a GREAT juice you can be proud of and tell your grandchildren about

IMG 8134rhubarb 152

Want to become a nutritionist and help others live life to the full? Let entrepreneur, visionary, public figure and senior naturopath Hermann Keppler share his amazing story and tell you how to do it!

I couldn’t believe that Herman Keppler, one of THE most knowledgeable naturopaths and nutritional experts had spontaneously agreed to an interview for The Little Plantation blog. So, on a cold, but sunny Sunday morning, I made my way to meet him at his office in Central London. He presented as warm, down-to-earth and incredibly knowledgeable about nutrition and the body’s ability to self-heal. Importantly, this wasn’t a man who was just talking the talk. He had actually walked the walk.

Hermann was born and raised in Germany. He studied to be an engineer and it was during this time, in 1981, that he had a horrific accident. Whilst on a work placement abroad, a laser cut off 3 fingers on his right hand! Surgeons did an amazing job to re-attach his fingers and although - in principle - the operation went well and Hermann got his fingers back, he was left in excruciating pain. ‘I wasn’t able to sleep, that’s how bad the pain was,’ he explained. But not just that, the blood circulation in Hermann’s injured hand was poor and post-operation his bones were not healing properly. Hermann returned to Germany and visited numerous specialists, but was told that there was nothing they could do for him; either he lived with the pain and managed it with pain killers or he had to have his fingers amputated.

Hermann contemplated both options – his scientific background couldn’t accept option number one. ‘Pain killers were not a solution, they were just a way of numbing out the problem. As a scientist I wanted more, I wanted a solution.’ And option number two was completely out of the question. So Hermann set out to look for option number three – a real cure.

As destiny would have it, one of his friends was studying Chinese medicine and homeopathy. He made a number of suggestions. ‘Firstly, he told me to cut out all the foods I loved: sugar, meat and junk!’ His friend also recommended acupuncture and gave him some herbal remedies. Eager to try anything, Hermann followed his friend’s advice, changed his diet, applied the herbal remedies and had acupuncture. Astonishingly, after just one session of acupuncture, Hermann slept through the night for the first time in weeks. ‘I couldn’t believe that a single session of acupuncture could reduce my pain by 80%.’ The natural remedies took four weeks to take full effect after which the blood flow in Hermann’s injured hand returned to normal and his bones finally joined and healed.

It was then that Hermann knew that he’d stumbled upon something pretty special. He read every book he could find on naturopathy, Chinese medicine, reflexology and nutrition. Convinced that complementary medicine was the way forward, Hermann decided to study naturopathy and after completing a three year course, opened his first clinic in Germany.

After further studies which led him across the world and much research into natural diagnostic techniques and therapies, Hermann was keen to share his knowledge; he started teaching, wrote three books and became a lead public figure in the field of naturopathy. It was not long after that Hermann set up his first college and – by the time he left Germany in 1997 – he had opened and successfully run 13 colleges in Germany. But his calling was to come to England, a move he will never regret: ‘It was a good decision to come. I love the UK, I think it is a fabulous place,’ he said. Here Hermann opened the doors of CNM’s first college in 1998. ‘We had 8 students when we started. Now we teach more than 1000 students every year.’

Today, Hermann is the principle and director of seven CNM colleges in the UK, three colleges in Ireland and since last year there is a college in South Africa and one in Florida, USA. ‘I could retire, but I would get bored’, he explained, ‘and I believe that there is still so much to do in terms of empowering and educating people in the ability of the body to heal itself.’

Hermann feels that CNM’s success lies on its focus on good, traditional teaching, great student support and real, practical application. ‘We want students to go out as confident and successful practitioners,’ Hermann explained. ‘We demand more clinical hours than any other college in the country because we wholeheartedly believe in the importance of taking the theory and putting it into practice. We won’t sign anyone off who isn’t ready to really help clients and make a positive difference to people’s lives.’

Next week, PART 2 of my interview with Hermann KepplerThe problem with orthodox medicine and how you can assist your body to heal itself! 

If you are interested to learn more about studying naturopathic nutrition, acupuncture, herbal medicine, homeopathy or naturopathy, please check out CNM’s website at

Sometimes I LOVE eating crunchy, raw food with crisp, fresh flavours. And sometimes, when the nights are still a little bit colder, I need a nice, warm foodie-cuddle. That’s when I seek out warm, yummy comfort food. Nothing too heavy, you understand, but just the right balance between naughty and nice to put a big smile on my face.

As I write this post, London is making a slow but steady transition into spring. And, with spinach so in season at the mo’ I just couldn’t think of a better time to make and share this wonderful recipe; my first savoury dish on the blog. Cool! I call it my lovely Spring Pearl Barley and Spinach Risotto, based on a recipe in the amazing River Cottage Veg Everyday Cookbook!


I have a go-to recipe, a one-size-fits-all-yet-it-still-comes-out-totally-fab-and-is-so-easy recipe; this is essentially it. Of course, I make minor changes to suit my mood, to adapt to what’s in the cupboards and adjust to what’s in season, but in essence it’s the same basic, fabulous, easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy recipe.

When I was taking the pictures of this cake for the blog, my son kept trying to bite into the cake. True story. He was so taken by its lovely aroma and yummy presentation. After a good 15 minutes of begging and some serious competition worthy foot stomping I gave in and cut him a slice…and another and…Ironically, I particularly like the pictures where the cake is actually cut, so am utterly grateful for his impatience! Counting my blessings.

Inspired by a recipe from Abel and Cole!

pear cake 2

Whilst researching pear’s health benefits on the internet, what really struck me were the frequent references to pear’s high fibre content and for that alone you gotta love pear! Constipation is such a big issue for so many people - including pregnant women - and if constipation is something you suffer from, please consider including this beautiful fruit in your diet. More specifically, pear contains lots of pectin, which is a type of soluble fibre that binds to fatty substances in the digestive tract and promotes their elimination. How fab is that?! This process appears to lower blood cholesterol levels, help the body regulate its use of sugar, reduce the risk of heart disease and even avoid certain types of cancer. Just remember to eat the skin and your body will thank you for it ;).

Furthermore pears are a good source of vitamin B2 and vitamin C, powerful antioxidants which help prevent high blood pressure, repair damaged tissue and strengthen our immune system. Pears also contain vitamin E, potassium and copper, the latter of which is key in batting off nasty free radicals that damage our body cells.

Are you expecting a baby or have a young family already – then you should stock up on pears! Why, well pears contain a high level of folate which can help prevent neural tube defects in the foetus. Pears are also lovely for toddlers who are slowly moving onto solids – they make great finger food, taste wonderful and are generally easy for younger ones to digest.

Tip 1: Pears are great in juices, but I would recommend using quite firm pears which aren’t too ripe and sweet. Ripe pears can clog up your juicer and more importantly consuming too much sugar without the fruit’s fibre can actually be harmful in the long run. You might want to consider juicing pears with green veggies to keep sugar levels in check too, just as I aimed to do in this popular recipe for my pear and elderflower green juice.

Tip 2: Have you got lots of ripe pears in your fruitbowl and don't know what to do. You can cut the pear up and freeze it, then pop it into your blender and make a smoothie when you are good and ready. Or why not make a vegan pear cake?

Maca is a root that belongs to the radish family; it’s grown in the mountains of Peru, just like lucuma. Maca comes in pill, liquid and powder form, although I have only ever used maca powder. Maca is super rich in vitamin B, C and E, is full of calcium, zinc, iron, magnesium, phosphorous and amino acids. No wonder they call it a superfood! Specifically, maca is known to help balance your hormones and increase fertility.

Although I strongly believe in its positive effects on the body, please remember that too much of a good thing can be bad for you. Research this superfood before consumption, especially if you suffer from any hormone-related illnesses. And for those of you who are fit and healthy, just remember not to go overboard in terms of quantity. ½ spoon – 1 spoon teaspoon a few times a week should be more than enough. That way you can enjoy maca’s rich, sweet flavour and health benefits to the fullest. Check out my pretty vegan pear cake if you want to taste maca at its best.  

Thanks for reading everyone!

What makes for a good match? In a marriage I believe you need friendship, respect and good communication. But I also think personally, another key feature of a successful partnership is having a husband whose strengths help mitigate my weaknesses, compliment my personality and bring out the best in me. And today’s recipe is indeed like the perfect partnership – here you have two star ingredients that were destined to be together. On the one side you’ve got the deep, rich, bitter creaminess of dark chocolate and on the other you’ll find tangy, juicy, sweet and fresh strawberries…YUM!

strawberries collage 1

Do you know what else I love about this recipe? It’s a great way to spend quality time with your child, bond and share your love of healthy food. So, for the photo shoot I got my son into the kitchen – he was a super assistant by the way, pinching the strawberries with the skewers and, much to his delight, getting involved in dipping the fruits (and his fingers) in warm, dark chocolate. After taste testing a number of chocolate covered strawberries, we went into the garden to pick some flowers and then arranged them together with the strawberries like a fun little flower bouquet. My son was proud of his work and I was proud of him!

I can’t begin to tell you how much my son, my husband and I love strawberries. When they are ripe, they smell soooo good, they look adorable and taste amazing, just like summer. In addition, they are also packed full of goodness.

Fruit has had a little bit of negative press lately, but interestingly strawberries have still come up trumps; even fruits’ most vocal critics love these little babes. That’s probably due to the fact that strawberries are low in calories, but high in fibre. Perfect if you are watching your weight and/or need to avoid sugar for health reasons.

Several websites refer to strawberries’ memory boosting properties, ability to promote bone health both in the aging population as well as in children. Like many other fruits and veggies, strawberries are high in antioxidants, key soldiers in our fight against cancer. Strawberries also contain vitamin c, which is so super important in maintaining optimum health. In short – tuck in everyone and eat some chocolate covered strawberries

Important: Please only buy organic strawberries and eat them in season. The non-organic, out-of-season ones are more expensive, less flavoursome and often covered in pesticides, a no-no if you ask me.

So what is lucuma exactly and why is it so good for us?

Lucuma is a fruit native to Peru. It was used extensively in the Inca Empire and held as a symbol of fertility and creation. As a result, Lucuma is sometimes used with clients who have hormonal imbalances.

Lucuma has a naturally sweet flavour - like a cross between maple and sweet potato - and can support the body balance its blood sugar levels. It is also a good source of fibre and antioxidants and is high in carotene, B3, and iron. Carotene are essential in the production of vitamin A and retinol which play a key role in maintaining good eye health and in keeping your skin looking young and beautiful. B3 in turn has been linked to reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, cataracts and type 1 diabetes. Cool, huh?! Finally, iron is vital for good health! It helps transport oxygen and is involved in numerous chemical reactions in the body.

Lucuma powder is great in baked goods or as an addition to dark chocolate, as seen the chocolate covered strawberries. Just give it a go! Thanks for reading.

Perhaps I am stating the obvious but:

1. Chocolate is probably THE best edible thing in the world. Fact – according to Mrs Kimberly, thank you very much!
2. When I talk about chocolate and its health benefits in this post I am NOT in any way shape or form referring to those nasty chocolate bars full of sugar, butter, soya and/or processed oil you get at the supermarket check-out. Nope, mister, I am talking about the real deal.

Chocolate comes from cacao, an ancient crop that has been cultivated in Latin America for centuries. In its purest form chocolate is wonderfully rich, bitter and sweet all at the same time. I just love eating raw chocolate – the higher the cacao content, the better.

Bitter is a taste that I enjoy, but I know many people shy away from it. Please give it a go. Note that by omitting bitter flavours from your diet you are also foregoing all the nutrients connected to bitter flavours. Why not start with 60% dark chocolate and work your way up to 85%, 90% if you can get your hands on it and 100% if you are really brave? You’ll be surprised how quick you get used to this beautiful flavour and won’t miss your old chocolate bars at all. Also try chocolate from different regions, you will be amazed how chocolate from Brazil is completely and utterly different from chocolate made in Ecuador or Venezuela. It’s so fun exploring the world of chocolate.

Luckily for this chocolate-obsessed woman, it’s packed full of nutrients. Sure, one shouldn’t overdose, but as part of a whole food plant based diet, chocolate is a complete winner. Firstly it is full of anti-oxidants, which helps fight off illness. Dark chocolate helps lower blood pressure, so is great for your heart and arteries. Dark chocolate contains potassium, copper, magnesium and iron in high concentrations. Copper and potassium help prevent strokes and cardiovascular ailments. Magnesium is key in our fight against type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease, whereas iron protects us against iron deficiency anaemia.

So even more reason to give my chocolate covered strawberries a try, right?

Thanks for reading everyone!

As a mother, I am delighted to report that my son absolutely loves carrots. It’s a staple in his lunch box and I totally get why he goes crazy for this veg. Carrots are crunchy and fun and even a little bit sweet. What my son doesn’t know is that they’re also really, really good for him.

Carrots are high in fibre, so keep our digestive tract healthy and active. Furthermore, carrots are good for our eyes due to their high beta-carotene content. They allow our hair to glow, nails to grow strong and our skin to stay radiant. Carrots are also fabulous at cleaning our teeth – an important one if you ask me!

There is lots of debate in the health food community whether carrots are best eaten raw or cooked. I personally prefer them raw, but I can see the benefit of eating them cooked too (certain nutrients are only released when carrots are cooked). My advice is to eat them both ways, giving your body the nutritional variety it’s likely to thrive on most.

What’s really crucial to keep in mind is that carrots come into their own as part of a varied plant-based diet provide many, many more benefits than outlined above.

Please find some recipes where I use carrots.
I hope this post was helpful, thanks for reading!

PLEASE NOTE: The photos for this blog post and the recipe slightly improved in December 2015.


Ok, so let’s get this straight – this cake sadly doesn’t really count towards your 5-a-day (although at a push and if you twist my arm I may let this one pass for adding ½ of your daily requirements ;)). BUT this creation is a healthier choice than the non-vegan carrot cakes you find in most shops and cafes. Plus, as you’ll find with this recipe, a little bit of naughty mixed with a little bit of nice can be quite delicious. In fact, this cake is super delicious and most of the people who eat it are completely and utterly amazed that it’s vegan! 

There are two ways to make the cake – I use the 20cm cake tin without icing if the cake is just for us at home. Spelt flour doesn’t rise so much, so it ends up being a relatively flat but utterly scrumptious cake. If I want to be a bit dramatic - as I wanted to be here, for this photoshoot -, I used 3 very shallow 15-cm cake tin and iced it. The simple, single layer cake requires more time in the oven though than the 3 layered cake (see below for details). 

This recipe is based on one I found in the beautiful Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook. I bought the book just before I moved to eating a mainly plant-based diet. It seemed suuuucccchhh a shame to have this amazing book and not be able to cook from it, so I decided to ‘veganise’ some of the recipes. This is the result of one of my attempts. Enjoy!



29th April


MAY 1-2-1 Food Photography and Food Styling Intensive {SOLD OUT}
I am now accepting 1 student for a food photography and food styling intensive in my studio in London. I only open my studio to 1-2-1 students 6 times a year so don't miss your chance ;). Spots are available on a first come, first serve basis.

The day will be tailored to YOUR needs and can cover topics such as learning about camera settings, working with natural light, food photography, composition, visual story telling, editing in photoshop and creating dark and moody food photography shots. 

Prices start from £150pp for half a day's session. Please contact me at kimberly(at)thelittleplantation(dot)co(dot)uk for more details or to answer any questions you may have.

MAY 1-2-1 Social Media and Food Photography On-Line Mentoring
I am now taking bookings for up to 4 slots in May for this on-line skype mentoring session (though if you are happy to travel to my home in London for a face-to-face mentoring session, I'd be delighted to meet with you).

The aim of the 1-2-1 mentoring sessions is.. 
- to talk through your struggles with food photographs and explore the areas you need to focus on to get to the level you want!
- to explore why your instagram feed and following may not be where you want it to be!
- to develop a plan that will help you take better pictures, find and express your food photography style and grow your social media following
- and much more! 

Prices start from £55 for a 30 minute session. Please contact me at kimberly(at)thelittleplantation(dot)co(dot)uk for more details or to ask any questions you may have.

JUNE 1-2-1 Food Photography and Food Styling Intensive {SOLD OUT}
I am now accepting 2 student for a food photography and food styling intensive in my studio in London. I only open my studio to 1-2-1 students 6 times a year so don't miss your chance ;). Spots are available on a first come, first serve basis.

The day will be tailored to YOUR needs and can cover topics such as learning about camera settings, working with natural light, food photography composition, visual story telling, editing in photoshop and creating dark and moody food photography shots. 

Prices start from £160pp for half a day's session. Please contact me at kimberly(at)thelittleplantation(dot)co(dot)uk for more details.

JULY - Food Photography Workshop in Gloucestershite
More details to follow shortly.

JULY 1-2-1 Food Photography and Food Styling Intensive

I am now accepting 1 students for a food photography and food styling intensive in my studio in London. I only open my studio to 1-2-1 students 6 times a year so don't miss your chance ;). Spots are available on a first come, first serve basis. 

The day will be tailored to YOUR needs and can cover topics such as learning about camera settings, working with natural light, food photography composition, visual story telling, editing in photoshop and creating dark and moody food photography shots. 

Prices start from £160pp for half a day's session. Please contact me at kimberly(at)thelittleplantation(dot)co(dot)uk for more details.

SEPTEMBER Vegan Supper Club in South West London
More details to follow shortly

SEPTEMBER 3-Day London Food Photography and Styling Workshop
Following the success of our sold out March 2017 workshop, we are now taking registrations for our fun filled 3-day food photography and styling workshop in London. The workshops will take place over 3 days and students can attend just 1 or 2 or all 3 of the workshop days! The dates are September 28th - September 30th, 2017 and the workshop will be hosted by yours truly as well as Aimee from Twigg Studios.

Each day will cover different topics from learning about camera settings, working with natural light, food photography composition, visual story telling, editing in photoshop and creating dark and moody food photography shots. For lunch we will explore 3 different local restaurant that all focus on vegetarian cuisine with vegan and glutenfree options available too. Goody bags will also be provided.

Classes will be kept to a maximum of 4 students to allow for individual attention and lots of hands on practice. Prices start at £275 per day! Please contact me at kimberly(at) to get furter information, the full timetable or to book your spot. But be quick to avoid disappointment ;). You can look behind the scenes at the March food photography workshop here.


APRIL Vegan Supper Club in South West London {SOLD OUT}
This event is now sold out! 
You are invited to join me and vegan baker and chef Silvia from Salvia+Limone for a special, seasonal, delicious 4-course vegan meal at the Social Pantry in Battersea.

Supper Club Details:

The Social Pantry Cafe, 170A Lavender Hill, London, SW11 5TG

about a 5 minute walk from Clapham Junction Station. Limited parking is available in the adjacent streets

Thursday, April 27th, 2017 

7.30pm arrival. Dinner served from 8pm - 10pm

How to book:
 via Eventbrite or Biletto 


early bird offer 10% off (book by 01/04/17) 

Special diets: 
There will be many paleo and gluten-free dishes on the menu. For details and any other dietary requirements, please get in touch!

Further questions: 
e-mail kimberly(at)thelittleplantation(dot)co(dot)uk

You can find the full menu here (subject to seasonal availability)

MARCH 1-2-1 Food Photography and Food Styling Intensive - {SOLD OUT}

This workshop is now sold out.
 I am now accepting 1 student for a food photography and food styling intensive in my studio in London. I only open my studio to 1-2-1 students 6 times a year so don't miss your chance ;). Spots are available on a first come, first serve basis. 

The day will be tailored to YOUR needs and can cover topics such as learning about camera settings, working with natural light, food photography, composition, visual story telling, editing in photoshop and creating dark and moody food photography shots. 

Prices start from £150pp
 for half a day's session. Please contact me at kimberly(at)thelittleplantation(dot)co(dot)uk for more details or to answer any questions you may have.

March 2017 -
3-Day London Food Photography and Styling Workshop. To see behind the scenes of this sold out workshop I did with Aimee from Twigg Studios please click here.

October 2016 - Great vegan bake-off blogger meet-up and prop swap.

December 2015
 - winter ashtanga yoga workshop and heart-warming, light vegan dinner. To see what was served on the night, just click here.

October 2015
- 3-day yoga and vegetarian food retreat in the beautiful English countryside. To see some impressions of the area just click here

- Winter ashtanga yoga workshop and heart-warming, light vegan dinner. To see more pictures and get one of the recipes from this wonderful evening, check this blog entry here.

2014 - Luscious 1-day urban yoga retreat and nourishing vegan brunch. To see more pictures and read the full article all about this incredible day please click here

August 2014 - The making of... on vimeo