Max La Manna on the power of plants
Max La Manna is a likeable young scamp.
We say “young”: he’s 30, yet could easily pass for 18. In fact, he still gets ID’d when socialising in London.
But the chef, sustainability advocate, environmentalist and author is “living proof” we all need some more Mother Nature in our lives. His new book, More Plants, Less Waste, is destined for big things and comes with a tidal wave of positive buzz and goodwill. No wonder TV is beating a path to his door. Now he’s swapped New York for London, his US twang will soon add some warmth to British TV.
When it comes to plants helping you look and feel great, Max is in playful mood. “I’m living proof: look at me! I am not a doctor and can’t give health advice, but plants have no cholesterol. People are dying from heart attacks and disease from over-consuming meat-focused dishes. So, eat more plants and create less waste.
“My book is plant-focused and if you still want to eat meat, you can. But this will help you eat more plants. You’ll get more nutrients and feel better while you do it.”
This is more than a chef looking to hawk books. This is someone on a crusade of positivity. Max’s passion for helping to heal the world is real, with his Instagram feed (@maxlamanna) sharing tips, stats and calls to arms for all of us to do better. “I had no idea this would have such an impact. I’m here to help, educate and inspire, and I’m learning as I go along, too.”
Max acknowledges he’ll never be fully zero waste. Yet, like life itself, it’s about striving to do your best. “It’s a ripple effect and it all starts with making that choice every day. I’m not perfect and I’ll never be completely zero waste. It’s a faraway planet, never to be touched. But to strive? That’s what I’m going to try to do. I’m always striving.”
More Plants, Less Waste by Max La Manna is out now (£20, Yellow Kite)