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May 7, 2014 / joyful plate

Natural Products Expo West 2014: brand insights

joyful plate natural products expo west 2014: brand insights (click here for full blog)

Every year, Expo West gets more exciting and vibrant, with many new foods to learn about. A whole new language has emerged that at times can be somewhat daunting: From flax, chia, hemp, chlorella, spirulina, quinoa, mangosteen, svetol, ashwagandha;  I for one would love a functional foods handbook!

That is why I found this year’s key note from Dr. Andrew Weil so reassuring – the key message: the secret to health is in keeping things simple, balanced and in moderation. There’s been a lot of posturing about what is best- raw? paleo? vegan? etc. “There is an enormous amount of dietary fascism out there-there’s no perfect diet. Humans are omnivores-we can eat a lot of different things, so we need a healthy variety”. 
Dr. Andrew Weil
(credit: Hope Media)
Dr. Weil kept it big picture by sharing a few steps to eating well that are always  good reminders-here are the key take aways:

-Eat as many plant-based foods as much as possible: fruits, veggies, herbs and spices. Plant based foods are high in phytonutrients- plants produce compounds for their own defense systems, which can protects ours.

-Try to reduce sweeteners, limit your sugar intake daily. Understand the difference between whole fruit and fruit juice (certain juices can have high glycemic indexes)

-Eat whole grains (if you can crush bread into a ball, go grainier)

-In general, eat fewer processed foods, less sugar and flour, a good variety of plants and lower your intake of animal meat.

So in the spirit of keeping things simple, here are a few brands that caught my eye at the show, offering straight forward, easy to understand and inviting messaging.

joyful plate brand insights Expo West 2014

(for more information, please click on the brand title to websites)

Beyond Meat



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