Thad - Before and after

Having grown up in the ‘Deep Fried’ south, Utopia Rising contributor, Thad Cheatham battled with food addiction, obesity, poor self-esteem, chronic sleep disorders and a plethora of other health issues. But after struggling for years trying a number of different diets, Thad found the raw food movement and has never looked back.

A registered Iridologist, Thad’s mission in life is to help people achieve their highest level of health through regenerative detox.

We caught up with Thad to find out how he overcame his challenges, how he uses his life experiences to help others and what you can expect from his columns on Utopia Risin.

Utopia Rising (UR): I would like to start with you detailing a little bit about yourself and what you do and how you got to this point.

My name is Thad and I help people achieve their highest level of health through regenerative detox. I used to be severely overweight and suffer from a number of health issues until I found the raw food and detox lifestyle.

UR: You have been very open about your struggles with food addiction and obesity. How did you overcome these battles?

I started working on it when I found out about the plant-based diet back in 2006 while working at my family’s health food store. It was really challenging because I had no one around me that was doing this. Originally, I started to lose weight, not purely driven by vanity, but by a fear of the health issues that would arise from being so overweight.

I had no idea how challenging it would become – spiritually, mentally and emotionally – and I soon realized that I had no self-confidence because of the way I looked. Then once I experienced what it was like to eat only plants I was changed forever. Despite this, I struggled for the next seven years to give up animal products, but I got a way better grasp on it when I met my girlfriend in 2013 and was able to stick with the diet long-term. It was so nice to finally have some support. Ultimately I have been able to overcome this through a willingness to never give up. It has been a struggle, but I have learned to enjoy the process and have learnt a lot from it.

Exploring the fruit powered lifestyle

When I think about eating the foods I used to eat, I no longer see any positives in them. I say ‘the taste is not worth the pain’. One of the biggest motivators for me, is just how good I feel from eating only fruit. Overcoming my need to eat for emotional comfort and learning to dive inward to discover the reasons behind the food addictions has been a huge learning for me. This has really helped me to become a good coach, because I genuinely understand how important the spiritual and emotional part of the journey is.

UR: How have these struggles led you to where you are now?

They have molded me into the person I am today because I learnt from them instead of letting them tear me down. I have also learned that all my past experiences, such as struggling to adopt the lifestyle, were preparation to become a better coach. I would never change anything, because I learnt so much from the mistakes I made. I use my own experiences to help people transition from animal-based diets and poor lifestyle choices, by leaning on my own experiences and struggles. People reach out to me because I have experienced it all myself.

UR: What is your driving force now – in terms of personal motivation and your work?

I just love to help people and feel like I’m making a difference in the world. I love to help others, because it inspires me to continue to help myself and vice versa. The more I help myself, the more I feel obligated to share my experiences to help others. I don’t feel like I am living my purpose or worthy of this life without being a great service to others that are simply trying to become the best versions they can.

UR: What can Utopia Rising subscribers expect from your columns?

Iridology, detox, raw foods, herbs, fasting, inspiration and motivation, and how to work on the spiritual and mental even more than the physical. I will also talk to how the body truly works and how we should really be living like humans on this planet. I also love to write about things that help people think outside of the programing they are used to and the subjects that people don’t talk enough about. I love to drop ‘truth bombs’.

Thad enjoying the waterfalls in Ubud