Erykah Badu wears many hats. There’s the singer hat, the stylist hat, and the literal hats, but there’s also the wellness hat. In 2003, she appeared in the documentary Holistic Wellness for the Hip Hop Generation to deliver her take on what it means to be healthy. Spoiler: It involves lots of chlorophyll. But that’s not all she has to offer. In fact, Badu is a font of health and wellness wisdom. Below, her 18 greatest tips.
1. Wellness means more than just a yearly physical.
“There are actually five doctors I go by: Doctor sleep, doctor diet, doctor sun, doctor nutrition, and doctor spirit.”
2. Don’t eat animals.
“I’ve been vegan-vegetarian [from] about the time my first album came out, so it was 1997.”
3. Treat your vagina like a mixed drink.
“Ladies .. For a SWEET vagina I drink raw cranberries often. Now the secrets out. [sic] (Reluctantly) Also promotes healthy, strong WOMB & bladder.”
4. But, uh, don’t expect your vagina to actually smell like cranberries.
“My vagina smells like strawberries.”
5. Give yourself a grown-up time-out.
“I have a teepee where I put myself in time-out.”
6. Use a rock-crystal deodorant to communicate with your brain.
“That shit works. You have to stroke under the arm one hundred times on each side. Then you don’t have to put no more on for like three days … It neutralizes the skin. It has to send a signal to the midbrain so neurologically you can stop being musty. It just doesn’t work like regular deodorant.”
7. The best sex is boring sex.
“Missionary is good for your organs. It’s good for your intestines, the gallbladder, and the liver, and the spleen.”
8. But no sex is also fine.
“I don’t require sex for happiness — I need companionship.”
9. Real friends becomes doulas for each other.
“It was 9/11, actually. Around that time [I decided to become a doula]. One of my girlfriends was in labor, she happened to be the wife of stic.man from Dead Prez.”
10. Buy some expensive rocks.
“Crystals are our friends. Crystals hold the memory of this planet. They’re like computers.”
11. Start each morning with a shot.
“I do the same thing every day. I get up. Drink a lot of water. Have a wheatgrass shot. Drink some green juice. Eat as healthy as I can. I’m not trying to win an award for being the best vegetarian, just want to be healthy.”
12. Be drama-free.
“I don’t drink, smoke or have any vices.”
13. Share your anger schedule with everyone.
“Make sure every body is in the know about which days U can be smooth fucked with. Know your emotional cycle/ pattern. It lessens the blow.”
14. Sitting meditation? Yawn. Try walking meditation.
“I practice walking meditation, meaning the breath — honing my breath at any moment. When I feel it getting shallow, that means I’m anxious about something and then I consciously slow it down and do some deep breathing.”
15. Stretch to remember yourself.
“I love the connection I have with myself every time I take a yoga class. It’s a very nice remembering, remembering the parts of me. You know what I mean?”
16. Drink fancy water.
“Coconut water [is my post-workout drink of choice] because it really hydrates the body.”
17. Treat your body like the luxury vehicle it is.
“If your body was a Lamborghini, you wouldn’t put no bullshit gas in it. It’s important that you put the right thing for the right kind of machine in your body. It needs the right kind of nutrients, and that’s high alkaline foods.”
18. Forget about the dumb past!
“I’m at peace because I’m right here in the moment. This is here, we are here, this is now. And staying in the here gives me peace. When I am worried about the past or concerned about the future, you know, there’s a little anxiety there. But ain’t nothing here right now but you, me, the phone, the room, the doll … everything else is something we’re making up in our mind. I stay outta my mind.”