Luke, from being a DJ to the wellness aficionado you have come a long way. Tell us about your journey.
An exclusive interview with Luke Coutinho
Luke, from being a DJ to the wellness aficionado you have come a long way. Tell us about your journey.
During the late 90s and early 2000, Goa was very different from what it is today and I had my fair share of parties and clubs as a youngster. However, I realize that it was just a phase and we all need to keep moving on because if we remain in just one phase we are unable to grow. Hence, I have pretty much gone with the flow.
Back in the day, I worked part-time on weekends at my cousin’s restaurant in Goa. I would wait tables, work in the kitchen, and even handle the bar. During this time, I developed a keen interest in the role of a DJ.
I would often sit through parties and observe people dancing with excitement to the DJ’s tunes. One night, when the DJ didn’t show up, I took it upon myself to step into the role, and that’s when my passion for being a DJ was ignited. I began working as a DJ at various times of the day and night, all while attending college during the day. Somehow, I managed to juggle these responsibilities and successfully complete my college education over the course of three years.
After my college days, I ventured into the hospitality sector for a period of time. Subsequently, I joined a multinational company and had the opportunity to work in Dubai, London, and Qatar. Eventually, I returned to India and spent ten years working at IBM. Throughout this journey, I pursued nutrition as a side interest, studying it as a hobby. My fascination with the Food Science and Nutrition subject grew, and I developed a deep love for it.
While working in the corporate sector, I couldn’t help but notice that many top-level executives neglected their health despite their impressive positions and extensive travel. This was my turning point. Despite having access to top-notch doctors, nutritionists, trainers, gyms, and superfoods, I realized that the missing piece of the puzzle was their lifestyle and their inability to lead a healthy life despite having all the resources.
Fitness had become a mere checkbox item for them, consisting of occasional yoga classes with a trainer, annual check-ups, and sessions with gym trainers. There was a lack of focus on overall lifestyle.
This observation didn’t make sense to me. I identified a significant gap in their approach to health and wellness and saw an opportunity to address it. That’s when I delved into this area and made the transition into lifestyle medicine.
I first began offering free help and consultations to a few individuals, and through this, I was able to positively transform their health and lives.
At this certain point, I faced a crucial decision. Should I continue with a stable job that offers a great salary and position, or should I take a leap of faith and start my own business in the health industry? Initially, fear held me back as I contemplated the unknown future.
However, I made the decision to follow my heart, gathered my courage, and quit my job to pursue a career as a health coach. It turned out to be the best decision I have ever made. By letting go of fear, which is often just an illusion in our minds, we open ourselves up to incredible and limitless possibilities.
Over time, my list of patients grew significantly, and I found immense joy and fulfilment in my work. I simply followed my heart, a principle my father instilled in me as I was growing up. I didn’t have a detailed business plan or a specific strategy. I only knew that I wanted to restore health to anyone who sought my assistance. That’s how I began my journey on my own, and as time went on, I built my own team.
All put together, it took over 11 years to reach where we are today. But I am also looking at thousands and thousands of patients we consulted in these years. It is honestly that that brought us here. What started off with just a team of 5-6 people has now grown into a beautiful team of 160+, and I couldn’t be more grateful.
You have been inspiring people towards a holistic journey of health along with various initiatives. How do you balance everything and what kind of challenges have you faced, how did you overcome them?
The strength of my journey lies in the unwavering support and dedication of my incredible team, who share a common vision and work in harmony with one another. Their commitment empowers me to achieve remarkable feats, as their contribution is essential to my success. I firmly believe in fostering a nurturing environment for my team, recognizing them as my greatest asset.
One of the most formidable obstacles I’ve encountered is transforming negative attitudes among individuals and guiding them towards recovery. Sometimes, a simple shift in attitude can lead to significant improvements in their well-being. Overcoming egos, pride, and entrenched attitudes can be challenging, but it’s crucial in removing obstacles to their growth and healing.
In addition to this, like many other brands, we’ve faced issues such as a lack of synergy among team members, occasional misalignment with our overall goals and vision, and encountering copycats attempting to replicate our content. However, by staying laser-focused on our purpose and diligently pursuing our work, we can easily navigate through these relatively minor challenges.
Ultimately, the core of my success lies in the united efforts of my exceptional team, their unwavering belief in the vision, and my dedication to supporting and nurturing them through every step of the journey
What is your definition of success? Does being successful only mean winning?
My definition of success has kept changing over these 9 years. As of today, I see success as a sense of fulfilment with what you achieve as well as what you do not. Many people feel successful in various aspects of their lives, but when those things no longer exist, they feel terrible. However, that doesn’t mean that success didn’t happen to them. Success is the constant ability to keep your mind open, to keep learning, and unlearning, and to keep achieving your personal goals. But most importantly, it’s about being able to follow our purpose, which defines our sense of freedom.
People should not look at success with a single-minded focus. It isn’t solely about money. Many individuals have wealth but lack health and happiness. Similarly, many people have achieved great positions in their careers but lack respect, health, and peace of mind. We should have a more diverse perspective on success. Success should be based on our value system and what is important to each individual. Success should never be built on comparison with others. True success lies in our ability to live as our authentic selves, without the need to compare or copy, and to feel good about ourselves at the end of the day.
No success doesn’t only mean meaning. You can be losing, but as long as you have learnt a lesson, you are winning. Its all about how we perceive winning and losing. One may have lost a game or a business deal, but that doesn’t mean they are losers. They have just lost at something.
Your holistic lifestyle program focuses on five fundamental pillars. Could you elaborate on how Cellular Nutrition, Adequate Exercise, Quality Sleep, Emotional Detox, and Spiritual Wellness play an essential role towards one’s journey to success?
Our approach to holistic wellness revolves around five powerful pillars that form the foundation of our protocols and coaching:
1. Deep Cellular and Intelligent Nutrition: Nutrition goes beyond just the food on our plate. It involves understanding how nutrients are absorbed by our cells and optimizing their bioavailability. We focus on providing the body with the right nutrients to support healing and promote overall health.
2. Adequate Movement and Activity: Movement is essential for optimal circulation, ensuring that nutrients and oxygen reach every cell of the body. We emphasize the importance of incorporating regular physical activity tailored to individual needs, promoting vitality and Vitality.
3. Quality Sleep, Rest, and Recovery: Sleep is not just about the number of hours but the depth and restfulness of sleep. We prioritize creating an environment conducive to
quality sleep, allowing the body and mind to recharge and rejuvenate for optimal well-being.
4. Emotional Wellness: Chronic and repressed emotions have a profound impact on our overall health. We recognize the connection between emotional well-being and disease, and our work with patients focuses on addressing and releasing negative emotions that hinder healing. Emotional wellness is an integral part of our approach.
5. The Spirit: Our connection to our innermost self, our core being, is crucial for happiness and overall well-being. We guide our patients to strengthen their spiritual connection, which can be achieved through various means such as acts of kindness, service to others, or personal practices like meditation or prayer. Nurturing the spirit is a key aspect of our coaching.
These pillars are interconnected, and each plays a significant role in health, healing, disease prevention, and overall well-being. By addressing and nurturing each pillar, we create a strong platform for healing, regardless of whether individuals choose allopathic or alternative approaches. Our focus extends beyond food alone, recognizing the profound impact of movement, cellular nutrition, quality sleep, emotional wellness, and spiritual connection on our journey to optimal health.
Could you highlight your initiative “Cancer Care – Aap Ke Liye”? How do you plan to expand this great cause?
I am deeply passionate about using an integrative and holistic approach in handling cancer cases. From the very beginning, my dream has been to make cancer care accessible to everyone, and to those less privileged, to provide it completely free of cost.
This initiative represents a significant step towards realizing that dream. With years of experience in managing cancer cases, my team and I have been blessed with the skills, knowledge, and expertise required to address cancer at any stage.
Currently, we have been able to impact the lives of nearly 200 individuals from underprivileged backgrounds through our free program and approach.
While this number may seem small considering the larger population in need, I urge everyone to drive this message in their circles and channels. It is essential that every village and neighbourhood becomes aware of this service because it is honest, genuine, effective, and, most importantly, free. Each one of us can contribute by spreading the word and helping those in need access this vital support. Together, we can make a significant difference in the lives of cancer patients who lack resources and ensure that quality care reaches every corner of our community.
Can you describe the core message of your new book – Small Wins Every Day? Any incidents which you would like to share with the audience on how small wins lead to a long-term aspiration?
This book aims to inspire individuals to break their goals, whether they are related to health, life, relationships, or personal growth, into manageable action steps. The key to achieving these goals is consistency and starting with small, achievable steps before gradually adding more.
Many of us tend to set lofty goals and resolutions that may sound impressive but are difficult to sustain. As a result, we often become demotivated when we can’t meet those unrealistic expectations.
To truly achieve our goals, simplicity and sustainability are crucial. While big goals may seem exciting, they are often not realistic or practical for long-term success. Instead, focusing on achieving small wins is vital because it fuels us with dopamine, the reward molecule, and keeps us motivated.
The book is filled with 100 achievable wins that readers can start incorporating into their lives, one step at a time. These wins are simple, easy, mostly free, and practical. Unlike many other books on self-help, goal setting, and success, this book is action-oriented rather than preachy or philosophical.
Its primary focus is on taking action and implementing positive changes in your life. By following the book’s actionable advice, readers can make tangible progress towards their goals and experience real transformations.
The book draws upon my nine years of experience in the field of integrative and lifestyle
medicine, working with clients who face various lifestyle-related conditions. I have witnessed numerous successful cases where individuals achieved remarkable results by embracing simple actions consistently. Contrary to popular belief, achieving good health doesn’t always require complex strategies. In fact, in most cases, the answer lies in implementing simple habits consistently.
By sharing my learnings and insights, I aim to guide readers towards a path of sustainable
change and positive transformation. This book emphasizes the power of simplicity, consistency, and the profound impact that small steps can have on our overall well-being.
You have been inspiring people to live a holistic life using social media as a tool, to educate people. How do you manage to balance the proportion of it?
I strive to inspire people to lead holistic lives through the powerful platform of social media, utilizing education, science, simple fundamentals of the human body and experience as my primary tools. I achieve balance by being mindful and intentional about the content I share. By focusing on these two aspects, I naturally avoid going overboard.
This is why I have never been able to follow those typical social media calendars that I know most social media content creators follow. Because our page isn’t just a content creator page. My approach is not about merely filling my page with content, but rather, my purpose is to enrich the lives of my fans and followers by consistently adding meaningful value.
If there is a learning I have made from a patient consult, I want to share it on social media to help others avoid making the same mistakes. I firmly believe in learning from mistakes, as well as learning from others’ experiences.
In a world where everyone takes a break to use social media, you recently announced a Social Media Break/Detox, what is your idea behind the same? Do you practice social media breaks?
Corporate wellness is often seen as a mere formality, but we believe it should go beyond superficial activities like blood check-ups and fitness challenges. Instead, it should involve genuine care for the mental and emotional wellness of employees, nurturing their minds in meaningful ways.
The response we received from people all over the world was overwhelming. During the social media detox, we created a supportive community on Telegram, and nearly 450 individuals joined us without a single dropout over the entire 8-day period. Remarkably, even after the detox ended, the group has remained connected, and many of us now observe regular weekend fasts from social media.
What’s truly heartwarming is the diverse participation. We had people of all ages, including seniors and young teenagers as young as 13, who enthusiastically embraced the break.
The past 8 days of disconnecting from social media have provided an invaluable opportunity for self-realization, unveiling the profound impact of limiting social media usage on physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual levels.
Although many individuals might not consider themselves addicted to social media, the constant influx of information can subtly shape our mindsets and beliefs, storing everything in our subconscious minds. The detox has allowed people to experience life without this constant brain stimulation, fostering a deeper understanding of its effects.
One remarkable discovery was a considerable improvement in sleep quality. Participants found themselves sleeping deeper and retiring to bed earlier. This revelation highlights how social media can unknowingly rob us of precious sleep, affecting our well-being. Moreover, people often view spending time on social media as relaxation, not realizing that it impinges on genuine relaxation and meaningful activities with loved ones.
During the detox, individuals started engaging in plans with friends and family, such as weekend outings, movie nights, hikes, and creative endeavours, valuing real human connection over virtual interactions.
Interestingly, many overcame the dreaded ‘Fear of Missing Out’ (FOMO). Contrary to the belief that social media alleviates FOMO, it actually exacerbates these feelings, fostering unhealthy comparisons and a sense of inadequacy. The detox liberated individuals from this cycle, empowering them to focus on their true priorities.
While I missed going live on my page during the detox, we conducted powerful masterclasses covering various topics, including social media addiction, relationships, health issues, and emotional resilience. Thousands of people actively participated in these masterclasses and continued empowering and educating themselves while staying away from mindless scrolling.
As the detox concluded, many participants recognized that they no longer needed to be on social media as extensively as before. They embraced a more intentional approach to their time spent on these platforms.
Through this, we have come to realize the immense power of stepping away from the digital world and embracing a more mindful and purposeful way of living. We hope to continue inspiring others to explore this path and discover the incredible benefits it can bring to their lives.
Yes, I take regular social media breaks over the weekends where I am completely off from Friday evening till Monday morning. And on weekends I usually switch it off by 8-830pm on most days. In my absence, it’s usually my team responding to health queries and messages.
What is your success mantra behind building this empire in the wellness industry?
A strong focus on the vision, a clear and clean intention, an incredible team who walks with me, gratitude, blessings, love and energy from patients we have helped and my belief in the power of providence.
You have been honoured for the Fit India Movement by our honourable PM Narendra Modi, what are your next steps to inspire the country to adapt to the holistic journey?
Firstly, I want to express that the brainchild of our honourable Prime Minister, Mr Narendra Modi, the Fit India Movement, is an amazing initiative benefiting our entire nation. As an Indian citizen, I am incredibly proud to have a leader who prioritizes the lifestyle, fitness, and wellness of our country.
Today, many people suffer from lifestyle diseases, leading to significant healthcare expenses. But what if we could save all of this by simply changing our lifestyle – the way we eat, move, and live? Most diseases are caused by poor lifestyle choices, which means adopting the right lifestyle can significantly reduce the chances of developing these diseases.
It is a great honour to be recognized by Mr Narendra Modi and his Fit India Movement for leading Lifestyle and Wellness initiatives for our nation.
My vision is simple and clear – to educate, inspire, raise awareness, and empower people to embrace lifestyle changes and make them a way of life. We share real and life-changing stories of my patients who have experienced remarkable improvements in their health and well-being by following simple lifestyle changes, such as eating local, eating at the right time, mindful chewing, incorporating daily movement, prioritizing quality sleep, and focusing on emotional well-being through meditation and spiritual practices.
Today, many believe that sickness is unavoidable, but it doesn’t have to be that way. With the right lifestyle, there is a vast potential for preventing various lifestyle diseases. There are seniors in their 80s and 90s who are healthy and disease-free because they have taken care of their lifestyle.
Through this platform, we aim to educate people about our traditional Indian wisdom and its intelligence and provide credible information about simple lifestyle practices that can enhance their physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health. We use social media platforms, webinars, and various activities to disseminate this knowledge.
Lifestyle is something that is close to my heart, and it brings me immense happiness to be recognized as the Champion for lifestyle and wellness for the Fit India Movement. I am determined to use this platform to take our efforts to the next level for our country.
The beauty of using lifestyle as a tool for improving the health and wellness of our country is that it is suitable for everyone, regardless of their age. From youth to pregnant mothers, senior citizens to babies, parents, teenagers, and students – the power of lifestyle holds true for everyone.
It is all about how you live your life and what you do on a day-to-day basis to maintain your health, prevent sickness, and even recover from existing illnesses. Our focus extends to the entire country, even the busiest individuals who struggle to find time for their health due to their routines.
For the past ten years, we have been creating and sharing informative videos on lifestyle, completely free of cost, for our country. We have over 5000 videos and blogs on health, lifestyle, disease management, and prevention.
These resources are available on various channels and social media platforms. We also make an effort to translate content into regional languages to reach the vernacular section of our country. Additionally, I am actively involved in running various health challenges through this movement to motivate people to make positive lifestyle changes and improve their health.