Carrie Forrest: A Former Marketing Pro Who Turned Her Health Journey into a Career

by | Read time: 5 minutes

Carrie Forrest’s sudden interest in healthy living not only helped her achieve optimal wellness, but it led her to find her dream job guiding others do the same.

Carrie Forrest Author of Healthy Meal Prep Instant Pot Cookbook |

“I get to be creative and entrepreneurial at the same time,” Carrie says. I never thought it would turn into a career – I started when I was a graduate student – but I’ve been fortunate to have amazing support from sponsors and an engaged and interested audience who supports my work.”

Carrie is the creator of the Clean Eating Kitchen blog that shares easy-to-make recipes and wellness resources. Carrie’s work inspires women to take control over their health, with a focus on holistic and natural healing.

After a short stint in retail corporate marketing and merchandising, she became interested in nutrition to try and heal herself from a variety of health issues, including chronic migraines, hormone imbalance, anxiety and thyroid cancer. She later earned a master’s degree in public health nutrition from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

At the end of a long day of blogging, Carrie enjoys taking a hot bath to wind down followed by watching travel shows (to virtually explore new places) with her hubby and feline furbabies by her side.

Look for her cookbooks, Healthy Meal Prep Instant Pot Cookbook and The Quick & Easy Healthy Cookbook: 125 Delicious Recipes Ready in 30 Minutes or Less now available for purchase. We recently sat down with Carrie to chat about her journey and best wellness advice. Read on!

1. What inspired you to start focusing on your health?

I watched the movie Super Size Me – the one where the guy eats fast food for 30 days – and I had a light bulb moment. I had not made the connection between what we eat and how we feel until then. I went straight from the movie theater to the grocery store with a whole new set of eyes. That was the first day that I actually spent time in the produce aisle and bought fresh fruits and vegetables.

2. How has your diet evolved since then?

I eat gluten-free and dairy-free to help manage my autoimmune disease and PCOS (polycystic ovary cyndrome). I’ve been eating this way for about eight years. I tried to be vegan but I didn’t feel well after a few years. I try to remember that everyone is different and that we each thrive on different diets.

3. Now being on this path for eight years, what motivates you to keep going?

I am motivated by my goals and I stay inspired by feeling good and having energy. There were many years when I was crippled by my health issues. I had chronic migraines and panic attacks that were so severe that I couldn’t leave my house. It’s like I’m a completely different person now and I’m so grateful to be feeling good most days.

4. Do you incorporate daily exercise into your wellness routine?

I’ve recently have gotten into Pilates and I love it! I didn’t expect it to be so difficult (it’s hard!), but I feel like it’s helping to build my strength and flexibility.

5. What does a typical day of eating look like for you?The Quick & Easy Healthy Cookbook: 125 Delicious Recipes Ready in 30 Minutes or Less |

I always start my day with a green smoothie. I call it my secret healthy weapon! I add lots of steamed dark leafy greens (steaming makes them easier to digest), and other superfood ingredients I get from Vitacost like cacao powder, protein powder, turmeric, frozen berries and hemp seeds.

My lunch and dinners consist of cooked vegetables or a salad, along with a protein like chicken, fish or grass-fed beef.

6. Sounds nutritious! Do you ever have cravings for sweets or junk food?

I love dark chocolate and eat it daily. I’ll either eat a few squares of a dark chocolate bar or make a healthy-ish treat like Avocado Chocolate Pudding or Black Bean Brownies.

7. Do you find this lifestyle challenging in any way?

The hardest part about healthy living is when I have bad days – like when I feel really tired or when I get a migraine. I always have to remind myself that I will get better and it’s normal to have “off” days.

8. Indeed! You are a role model to so many… but who is yours?

I’m a huge fan of Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman. I feel like she’s a friend, even though we’ve never met. I admire how much she’s accomplished, while at the same time she seems very down-to-earth and approachable.

9. Pop quiz! You open your front door and see your Vitacost haul has been delivered. What’s in it?

This is such a hard question because I buy so much from Vitacost every month – from beauty products to natural household products, to organic and healthy foods for my pantry.

I’ve been making a lot of pasta salads lately and I love the Tolerant Food lentil pastas. They’re so good and the texture is just like regular pasta.

I’ve been buying Devita beauty products from Vitacost for years. I adore the Devita Revitalizing Eye Cream.

Lastly, since I mentioned how much I love chocolate, I guess you could say that I can’t live without HU Dark Chocolate Bars.

10. Those are some of our top picks, too! What do you most about Vitacost?

My husband introduced me to Vitacost! He was looking for a lower-cost option to buy natural beauty products and came across the site. He sent it to me and I was hooked. I have been a loyal customer for almost a decade now.

11. Love it! What advice do you have for someone just getting started on their health journey?

Take baby steps and take it one day at a time. You don’t have to go through your kitchen with a garbage bag and throw out all of the food that you think is unhealthy. That’s pretty dramatic and can be overwhelming. You will likely find more long-term success by making small changes. For instance, try swapping out soda for sparkling water or using lentil pasta instead of white pasta. I would also say to find your “why” for the changes you want to make. Be really specific about your goal so that you can feel like you’re making progress.

Follow Carrie on Instagram @cleaneatingcarrie.