Dawn Russell is a Lady, in that she holds a British royal title. She’s also a model, and a cancer survivor. The latter came as a surprise in her mid 20s, when she was diagnosed with lymphatic cancer — now in her 40s and fully recovered, she sticks to the mantra of clean living, especially when it comes to food. The Cut talked with Dawn about her new green juice, 8G, special algae, and finding happiness in a slice of pizza.
How I start my day: I have two little kids, a 1-year-old and a 4-year-old, so I get up rather early. The first thing I do is I have a hot glass of water and lemon. It’s been my saving grace, because we travel a lot and I have a weakened immune system from having half my lymph nodes taken out my body. And then I have a coffee and my green juice, 8G.
What my green juice means to me: It came out of necessity. When I was very ill, I was using extreme amounts of these greens to help me. Once I got back on my feet, I didn’t have the hours to go and get local greens and try different recipes. It became way too time consuming. 8G was a five-year labor of love, to figure out a way how to make these eight greens and one grass taste good, with zero sugar. The next challenge was getting it cost effective. It’s $12.50, and I know everyone’s getting the eight greens they need. I don’t want people to think: Oh, now I don’t need a green salad or vegetables. This is just a helper. The first thing the greens do is that they detox your body and then they oxygenate — that’s why they help your skin so much. And then there are huge long-term health benefits: anti-aging and a strengthened immunity. It also helps you alkalize your body and it really cleans out toxins.
From a nutritional value, I love that is has blue-green algae. Not many people know about blue-green algae because it’s incredibly expensive. It’s the only green 100 percent not man-manipulated, and most of it comes from Lake Klamath in northern Oregon. It’s the most powerful green, and doctors would agree with me.
How I like to sweat: I don’t work out every day, but when I do, I pretty much die. I do intense circuit training, intense boxing once or twice a week, and then one pretty intense yoga session.
What wellness means to me: Balance. If you’re balanced, then you have peace. I have a huge sweet tooth, so I’ll have my biscuit, but then I’ll also eat healthy. I’ll have fun, but I’ll also take care of myself.
How I eat when I’m alone: It depends on where I am. If I’m in New York, it’s a slice of pizza.
My wellness advice is: Anything that can help you cleanse I have found incredibly valuable in terms of health, mental calmness, and your physical capacity. For me it has always been a lot of eastern stuff: a lot of acupuncture, cupping, and yoga. Anything that you can do to clean out your body is worth it for a high-functioning life.
This interview has been condensed and edited.