Alkmini Chaitow is the secret behind Leon’s success, and she deserves much of the credit for providing him with the warm and loving environment that allowed him to develop his writing and teaching career.
A chance meeting in the early 1970s led to a whirlwind romance and marriage, and a fairytale love story in which life truly imitated art. At that time, Leon ran a successful osteopathic practice and delivered the odd lecture, but his writing career might never have taken off had it not been for Alkmini’s gentle encouragement and staunch support.
Alkmini, Sasha, and Leon, 1983
At the end of busy practice days, after dinner, Alkmini would make Leon a cup of Greek coffee, and encourage him to write. And write he did, and after a slow start, that blossomed into the 70+ books now listed elsewhere on this website.
As a young Greek wife with a vegetarian husband, Alkmini quickly adapted the traditional recipes learned from her mother and grandmother, and soon became an author in her own right. Over the years she has published three books (available through the bookshop on this website) and several dozen articles on healthy nutrition.
In the 1980s and ’90s when Leon’s international career took off, Alkmini often travelled with him, but just as often remained behind, preparing a restful haven for him to return to and recuperate.
Leon relaxing in Alkmini’s gorgeous garden, summer 2017
In the early 1990s, when Sasha was in her teens and Alkmini had more time on her hands, at Leon’s encouragement she pursued a degree in Family Counselling at Nene College (now the University of Northampton) to hone her inborn talent for nurturing and supporting healthy relationships.
Her passion for gardening and beautifying the home provided Leon and Sasha with a glorious and peaceful environment in which to pursue their respective endeavours. Neither of them could have achieved as much as they did without her steady and affectionate presence, support, and down-to-earth nature.
Leon often featured dedications to Alkmini in his books and at the end of his lectures. In his final months, faced with serious illness, he twice exceeded all the odds, claiming that it was his love for her that gave him the strength to fight on, and declaring himself to be as much in love with her then, as on the day they met.
Leon and Alkmini spent nearly 50 blissfully happy years together. His legacy is as much a credit to the incredible love and support of his wife, as to himself.
Leon and Alkmini on their wedding day, 1972
Alkmini and little Dumbo, their beloved dachshund
Alkmini enjoying the garden
A young Dumbo. Now (2020) approaching 18 years old, Dumbo lives with Sasha, two sheepdogs, and several cats.