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Our kitchen and juice bar will be closed from January 11th, 2018 through March 4th 2018. Our beautiful expanded kitchen will be open on March 5th. When we re-open, we’ll have:
-A hot food bar with breakfast and lunch/dinner options including breakfast burritos, enchiladas, mac and “cheese”, lasagna, roasted vegetables and more
-Hot sandwiches, made to order, including longtime customer favorites like our bahn-mi along with new options
-A grab and go case with 50+ items, made fresh daily, including dips, salads, sandwiches, entrees and desserts
-A self-serve pastry case with 15+ cookies, cakes, muffins and more, made fresh daily
-Organic espresso, cappucino and lattes
-IKF Kosher Certification for our kitchen
-Full menu availability on the weekends, and we’ll be serving food daily from 8am to 9pm
All of the food we prepare will continue to be plant-based and made with a minimum of 95% certified organic ingredients. Stay tuned for updates!
Many of us rely on coffee as a daily pick-me-up and warming drink. However, if you want your hot beverage to pack more of a health punch, consider choosing a natural herbal tea to stay warm this winter. When the temperature drops, it is beneficial to drink warm liquids as well as water to regulate the body’s internal temperature and stay warm. Ayurvedic medicine recommends drinking warm liquids and eating warm foods in winter time to avoid putting the body under extra stress and trying to ‘warm up’ cold foods and liquids before digesting them.
At Perelandra, we stock a wide range of herbal teas, ranging from green tea to chamomile to nettle and ginger. We also have a large selection of bulk herbs in the vitamin section of the store, many of which can be boiled and made into teas. These include astragalus root (an adaptogen which helps the body to combat stress and disease and is anti-inflammatory), Echinacea angustifolia (traditionally used as an antiviral, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory), mullein leaf (traditionally used for coughs and respiratory infections, and other inflammatory infections such as diarrhea, bruises and burns, and ear infections), eleuthero (another adaptogen, eleuthero is traditionally used to shorten the duration of colds if taken in early onset, help relieve stress, and improve cognition and mental capacity), oatstraw (high in calcium, this herb has traditionally been used for bone, skin and nail health, and also contains silica, an important mineral for skin health, as well as lots of B vitamins), marshmallow root (traditionally used to soothe a sore throat and irritated stomach, can be used as a laxative also), lemon balm (traditionally used for a calming effect, which may help to improve sleep for insomniacs and help with anxiety; also may help with cold sores because of the flavonoids it contains), burdock (traditionally used as a blood detoxifier, and helps to cleanse the liver), and feverfew (traditionally used to help fight headaches and migraines, may help with treating rheumatoid arthritis, and help the skin condition dermatitis). These are just a small selection of the bulk herbs we have available in store, please do not hesitate to ask a member of staff to show you the others. Buying bulk herbs and making them into a tea yourself means you are getting a nice potent dose of the dried herb and all of the health benefits. Many of the bulk herbs we sell have a general detoxifying effect as well as more specific effects, and many of them work well synergistically when paired with one or two other herbs.
To stay hydrated in cold weather, it can also be a good idea to drink warm or hot water with lemon juice and ginger first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. The warm water will help to cleanse the digestive system and wake it up, while the lemon juice is considered by some to have positive and cleansing effects on the kidneys. Try not to drink too much ice cold water in the colder months as this can be a shock to the system; instead try room temperature water or warm water instead.
Most herbal teas are naturally caffeine-free too, which means that they do a great job of hydrating you naturally and do not give you that hyped-up feeling that coffee can sometimes produce. Happy tea drinking!
During the holiday season, when the days are darker and the nights longer, we need all the comfort and cheer we can get. Spending time with family and friends is wonderful for our mental and emotional well-being. The foods and beverages that we reach for also play a major role in our sense of vitality and health at this time of year. It may be tempting at times to reach for items that are high in fat and sugar when the temperature drops, but these will leave you feeling even more tired and sluggish than before.
Luckily, at this time of year there is an abundance of seasonal produce available that provide us with a plethora of vitamins, minerals and good fats without comprising on taste and flavor. Adding these seasonal foods to your festive winter menu will help to keep you warm, full and happy!
Sweet potatoes are a holiday staple in the US, and are best eaten from November to December, when they are in season. They are native to Central and South America. In the US, sweet potatoes are mainly grown in the southern states, especially North Carolina. These delicious root vegetables are also super easy to prepare, and can simply be boiled, steamed or roasted in their skin. Sweet potatoes are one of nature’s best sources of vitamin A as Beta-Carotene. It is a good idea to consume them alongside some healthy fats, such as a drizzle of olive oil or some avocado, to aid beta -carotene absorption. Sweet potatoes are also chock-full of antioxidants, which help our bodies to fight free radicals and also protect our cells from oxidative stress. Phytonutrients in the brightly colored flesh of sweet potatoes also contain anti-inflammatory properties, helping to calm areas of inflammation in the body. The modern Western diet, high in acidic foods such as red meat and simple sugars, means that high bodily inflammation is a problem for, if not all, very many Americans. Sweet potatoes also contain many vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A and C, manganese, (an important component in energy production), copper, vitamins B1, B2 and B3, potassium and phosphorus.
In almost every café in Brooklyn this fall and winter, you can find the infamous pumpkin spice latte. Most commercial versions are loaded with sugar, cream and coffee, negating the health benefits of this super popular vegetable. The same goes for the classic pumpkin pie, which in most cases is high in sugar and fat. However, it is possible to indulge in healthier versions of these classics, as vegan or even raw versions. Making sure to include plenty of real pumpkin in your pie this holiday season, without an excess of simple sugar means that you will reap some of its amazing health benefits.
High in fiber and low in fat, pumpkins make a great low-calorie option for those who want to feel full without adding extra fat. Like sweet potatoes, the pumpkin’s orange hue means it is brimming with beta-carotene. Additionally, pumpkins also contain the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which help to protect eye health and integrity. Vitamin A is essential for optimal immune health and function, and also contributes to youthful skin appearance. The carotenoids in pumpkins also help to reduce inflammation and fight free radicals. Pumpkins are often paired with spices such as ginger and cinnamon- ginger can help to soothe an upset stomach and aid digestion, and some research has indicated that cinnamon may be helpful for blood sugar balancing.
Another popular product at this time of year is maple syrup. Many of us enjoy its sweet taste and in the US and Canada, it is a year-round staple, but especially around holiday season. We have all had it drizzled on top of a stack of pancakes, but did you know that maple syrup boasts some nutritional benefits that other sugars simply don’t? Maple syrup is made from the boiled-down sap of the maple tree and is native only to North America and Canada and was originally discovered and utilized by Native Americans.
Maple syrup is surprisingly rich in minerals, especially calcium, iron, zinc, potassium and selenium. It is also an excellent source of manganese, which is essential for healthy brain and nerve function. Unlike most sugars, maple syrup will not spike your blood sugaras dramatically as white table sugar. Maple syrup is closer to its whole food form than some sugars, which means it retains more of its nutritive value. It is important to use all sugars sparingly, but it is always nice to know that your sugar of choice is providing you with some vitamins and minerals as you indulge!
So there you have it- three seasonal and traditional holiday foods that are eaten in huge amounts every year in the US, and their health benefits. Remember that as you tuck in, you are doing your mind, body and soul some good by eating fresh, preferably organic whole foods in line with the seasons! Enjoy the holidays!
Categories: Tips & Advice
Nowadays, many foods become trendy or ‘the next big thing.’ The reality is, most of these foods have a long history of usage as healing foods in different cultures. Their health properties have long been utilized and understood by those who used them. What we often think of as ‘new’ information has actually been understood by many before. With this in mind, we enter into a new appreciation for the wonderful health foods that we are lucky to have at our disposal.
Hemp seeds and hemp oil are versatile, healthy foods that can easily be added to one’s daily diet and are currently enjoying a surge in popularity. The hemp plant has been used throughout history not only in its edible form but also for medicinal uses and as hemp fiber used to make rope and clothing, for example in ancient China. Pliny the Elder writes in his Natural History of the medicinal uses of the hemp seed. He suggests that hemp seeds may be useful for extracting worms from the ears and that a concoction of hemp and water applied to the skin may soothe burns.
The hemp plant also has a notable US history. Industrial hemp has been grown in America since the first European settlers arrived in the 1600s. Hemp was used to make paper during this era and wagons were covered with canvases made of hemp. The plant was part of the daily lives of many farmers and families, and because the whole plant could be utilized in some shape or form, it was a highly valued crop.
During World War 2, the cutting off of foreign supplies to the US meant that the government began encouraging farmers to grow and produce hemp once again. These farmers were given subsidies and special privileges.In modern times hemp is often confused with cannabis and marijuana and their psychoactive qualities. Hemp and cannabis come from the same plant, cannabis sativa, but hemp used for food products has little or no THC (or tetrahydrocannabinol), the active ingredient that makes cannabis psychoactive. In 1951, the Boggs Act was passed in the USA, prohibiting the possession of both marijuana and hemp. This law also enforced mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenders. The passing of this act may be one reason why confusion between hemp and cannabis still exists today and gave the plant a bad name.
Today hemp seeds and hemp oil are being lauded for their health benefits and enjoying time in the spotlight as super-foods. The hemp plant contains a perfect balance of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, in an ideal ratio to be utilized by the body. Hemp seeds contain all of the essential amino acids needed by the human body, i.e. those which we do not produce ourselves. Hemp protein also ranks as one of the most digestible plant proteins, and is much gentler on the digestive system than animal sources of protein such as meat, cheese or eggs. Another reason to choose hemp protein over another is perhaps the wide range of vitamins and minerals that hemp protein boasts. These include many B vitamins, vitamin E (essential for good skin health), magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, iron and zinc. For this reason, hemp is also an excellent food choice for those eating a plant-based or vegetarian diet as it is so rich in nutritive value. Many people who cannot tolerate nuts or soybeans or other common allergens do not react to hemp, making it a good choice for those on a restricted diet.
Shelled hemp seeds are soft and can be sprinkled onto fruit salads, mixed into muesli, added as a topping for a smoothie, or simply eaten alone as a snack. Hemp protein powder is an excellent addition to a smoothie, eaten for breakfast so the health benefits of the humble hemp seed can be felt throughout the day.