• Just How Bad is Processed Food for Our Health?

    The USDA has an ambiguous stance on the definition of processed foods, which is:

    “Any raw agricultural commodity subjected to washing, cleaning, milling, cutting, chopping, heating, pasteurizing, blanching, cooking, canning, freezing, drying, dehydrating, mixing, packaging, or other procedures that alter the food from its natural state.”

    This definition does not address the different types of processed foods that exist in our food system. Luckily, the NOVA Food Classification system (developed at the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil) was developed to classify processed foods into different categories, based on the degree to which the food is processed.

  • The Magical Vitamin Made by Bacteria

    What vitamin is made by bacteria, including bacteria in the soil, bacteria in bodies of water, and bacteria that are housed in the stomachs of grazing animals, such as cows or sheep?

    Drumroll please.... Vitamin B12! This is the only vitamin produced exclusively by microorganisms.

  • Best Diet of 2020: Eat Real Food! (Yes, it is that simple)

    Author: Trisha Shea R.D. When did restrictive, fad diets become a thing? Have you ever tried a “fad” diet before? I bet we all have! I remember dr...
  • RAW Conversations: Episode 1 - Tips From Plant-Based Body Builder & Personal Trainer Cole Hastings

    We're so lucky to be having Cole on for our first episode! We had the opportunity to cover topics such as: where do you get your protein? Macros Vs Micros, the emotional side of switching your diet, Carbs, and Cole's Top Tips for aspiring vegan gains.
  • Wild Blueberries: The Next Big Superfood?

    Wild blueberries are different from regular blueberries (aka cultivated blueberries) in many ways. For instance, wild blueberries are referred to as “lowbush”, while cultivated blueberries are called “highbush”. What does this mean?
  • Food Labels: The Good, Bad & The Ugly

    On a scale of 1-10, how useful are food labels to you? Does front and back of package labeling help you make a more informed, healthier decision?

    This may be the case, but… What if we told you that certain food labels in the U.S. may be deliberately misleading and confusing?

    Our goal is to shed light on what we should pay attention to and what deserves to be ignored when it comes to food labeling.

  • Are Cacao and Cocoa the Same?

    Have you ever thought about where chocolate comes from?
    Maybe it never crossed your mind. Let’s face it—we aren’t going to be planting “chocolate” trees in our backyard anytime soon.

    Chocolate has an interesting origin. It is made from cacao seeds that come from the Theobroma tree. Theobroma is the Latin name for cacao, which translates to “food of the gods”.

  • Navigating BBQ Season with Vegan Family and Friends

    If you are having a vegan or vegetarian over for a BBQ (July 4th anyone??), or you are a new vegan yourself- then this is the article for you!!! We gathered some of our favorite recipes and fave vegan products in ONE spot for the ultimate guide.
  • Raw Foods vs Cooked, Which is Better?

    Benefits of Eating Raw Foods

    • Raw foods may be better for mental health. Research has shown that higher intakes of raw fruit and vegetables, compared to cooked or canned, in young adults was associated with significant higher mental health outcomes, including:
      • Decreased depressive symptoms
      • Higher mood
      • Higher life satisfaction

    Eating cooked and canned fruit and vegetables was associated with an increased positive mood only.

    This study found that the top 10 foods related to better mental health were carrots, bananas, apples, dark leafy greens like spinach, grapefruit, lettuce, citrus fruits, fresh berries, cucumber, and kiwifruit (all raw eaten raw!!).

  • What are the Healthiest Overnight Oats?

    Remember, whole grains contain all three edible parts of the seed, whereas refined grains only contain the starchy endosperm.

    Now that we understand what makes up an oat kernel, let’s talk about different types of oats (listed in order of least processed to most processed):

    • Whole Oat Groats: portion that is left after the hull is removed; Contains all three parts of the seed (the bran, endosperm, and germ), which makes it a whole grain; Have a hearty, chewy texture, and nutty flavor; Take the longest to cook
    •  Oat Bran: outer layer of the groat, which is separated from it during processing; Is creamier than other types of oats and usually cooks much faster
    • Steel Cut Oats: Made from oat groats that are cut into smaller pieces; Have a somewhat chewy, chunky texture and take longer to cook
    • Old Fashioned Oats (Rolled Oats): Made from oat groats that are steamed, rolled, and flattened into flakes, then dried to remove moisture
    • Instant Oats: Most processed type of oats that usually come sweetened and artificially flavored; Made from oat groats that are steamed longer and rolled into thinner pieces than rolled oats; Cook the fastest

  • The Power Behind "Diversity of Plants"

    Dietary fiber is a complex group of substances that can be categorized according to their source, solubility, fermentability (how effectively bacteria metabolize them), and physiological effects.

    Different forms of dietary fiber include:

    • Non-starch polysaccharides (hemicellulose): Found in cereal grains; present in both soluble and insoluble forms
    • Pectin: water-soluble polysaccharide; Highest amounts found in fruit and to a lesser degree in vegetables, legumes, and nuts
    • B-glucans: non-starch polysaccharide, generally soluble; Highest amounts found in barley and oats
    • Cellulose: major component of plant cell walls; found in grains, fruits, and to a lesser degree in vegetables and nuts
    • Lignin: Found in foods with a woody component aka celery and the outer layer of cereal grains (The outer layer is the bran, which is the part that is removed during processing, but remains intact in whole grains)
  • Why Is Fiber So Important?

    I think most people could agree that we should be getting more plants into our diets, but does anyone really know why? Yes, eating more whole plant foods, like fruit, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains can help reduce our risk of chronic disease—thank you phytochemicals! But what really is the deal with plants? Why is it so important that we eat them on a regular basis? One word. FIBER.

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