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Navitas Organics Blog

5 Healthy Habits for an Everyday Detox

Posted by Julie Morris, Navitas Organics Executive Chef on May 6, 2018 7:22:00 PM

So, you've done the juice cleanse, sworn off all sugar for 30 days, paid good money to do yoga in a 105-degree room, and tried incorporating black-colored foods made with charcoal. Your credit card statement says you should be fully detoxed by now, but your energy levels tell a very different story. 

If you're feeling frustrated by the cyclical nature of your detoxification efforts, you're not alone. That's because detoxification is much more than anything a singular product or a week's worth of hardcore effort can offer. This is true for a couple of reasons: first, detoxification should never be overly aggressive. Any change in personal homeostasis should be fairly gradual to allow your body to heal naturally and adjust back to an optimum state. While many products are designed with this in mind, using them in a short-term format dramatically negates their effects. In other words, drinking one detox smoothie once won't hurt you, but it probably won't do very much to help all on its own.

The second factor to ineffective detoxification is far less in our control: our environment. It isn't abnormal for the average person to be exposed to thousands (and many times much more) of toxins a day, including cancerous levels of arsenic, dioxins and DDE. So, while kicking back a spirulina shot may help remove some of this dangerous chemical debris from your body, it's not like those toxins are gone forever.

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Topics: wellness, cleanse, detox, information, blog, food, foods, habits, health, healthy, tips

Why Farmer Autonomy Matters: An Interview with the President of A Growing Culture

Loren Cardeli, co-founder and president of A Growing Culture (AGC), has spent the last 10 years traveling the world, learning from farmers and realizing that farmers are our solution to the current environmental crisis. I sat down with Loren to learn more about the amazing organization he started, and how he aims to change the way we view farmers and their critical role in changing our food system.

MD: What inspired you to start A Growing Culture?

LC: My love of agriculture and farming has led me to explore communities around the world and learn how they’ve been growing their food. These experiences triggered my interest in this movement, but my “lightbulb” moment came from a personal experience I had while working in a community in Belize. We were growing our own food, living off our own produce, hunting our own meat, deep in the jungle. One day, I walked to a local community to purchase some chickens for dinner and heard someone screaming. I saw a man holding his young son, who looked pale and limp, and it turned out his son had mistakenly ingested pesticides that were used on his crops. Tragically, his son ended up dying. Seeing this shook me, but it also opened me up to understanding that there are two models of agriculture. Just a few blocks away, we were living organically, growing our own food and connected to the source, while this nearby community was connected to a logging road, and down that road was the access to market inputs, fertilizers and chemicals. This community had become dependent on these connections with industrial and chemical farming, and what blew me away was how close, yet how far away these communities were from each other. It showed me how the industrial model not only erodes the environment, but it also erodes the culture and the community. At that moment, I decided I wanted to work with farmers all over the world to unite and amplify their solution to a better food system for all, absent of foreign, chemical and dangerous inputs.

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Topics: information, organic, blog, community, culture, food, healthy, sustainability

3 Reasons Why You’ll Never Balk at the Price of Organic Again

In the early days of Navitas when Zach and I were starting our family, we were already avid consumers of organic food. As young adults, we were fortunate to be introduced to health foods through a hippie counterculture that inadvertently introduced us to the plant-based diet. I also spent time working on an organic farm in college, learning about cultivation practices like biodiverse planting, crop rotation and other methods to improve soil health. By the time we met, we both felt strongly that eating foods free from chemicals was the ethical choice, not just healthier for people, but healthier for all ecosystems that people depended on to live. As fate would have it, our son was born at the same time we were introduced to the idea of importing Maca from Peru. A new sense of urgency emerged with parenthood to protect our child from exposure to anything that could potentially affect his development. In retrospect, it was a sign that we were meant to start an organic food company and work in an industry that we believed could positively influence the world into which we were bringing our child. Albeit scary starting a business at the same time as starting a family, we were comforted in the idea that we were investing in healthier communities and wanted to support farmers who shared in that commitment.

Our early partners in Peru were some of the first organic certified operations cultivating Maca and Cacao for export at the time. Through our partnerships, we gained a deeper understanding of how traditional farming practices are inherently organic and sustainable due to the smaller scale, slower production rate, and inability to pay for expensive agrochemicals in the remote farming villages where the products were grown. But in the US, the organic label grew to mean something we relied upon and we felt obligated to share that sense of security with our

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Topics: wellness, information, organic, blog, food, health, healthy

5 Simple Sustainable Living Tips to Improve Your Health

Posted by Megan Faletra on Apr 22, 2018 2:01:18 AM


Earth Day is the perfect time to think more about how our choices affect the world around us. Whether you’re already an earth-loving master recycler or a beginner looking to learn more about sustainability, embracing a more sustainable way of living can be a wonderful way to improve your own health and the health of our planet.

But, getting started may feel a bit overwhelming, which is why we have listed some of our favorite simple tips to help you begin embracing sustainable living in your own life today.

Tip #1: Say Goodbye to Plastic Water Bottles for Good!
Statistics show that if we don’t change the amount of plastic we consume and dispose of soon, by 2050 there may be more plastic in our oceans than there are fish. Luckily, there is a lot we can do in our daily lives to keep this from happening. Simply switching to a reusable glass or stainless steel water bottle is an excellent way to reduce the amount of plastic water bottles entering our landfills and oceans. It’s also so much better for your health, as endocrine-disrupting chemicals are present in plastic water bottles and can leach into the water over time. This isn’t good for your hormones or your health and is just another reason to choose the reusable option.

Tip #2: Switch to Reusable Food Storage Wraps and Containers
Switching to reusable bees wraps or cloth bags is a great way to reduce your need for plastic wrap and ziplock bags for food storage. Switching your plastic tupperware to glass tupperware is also a great way to not only reduce your exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals (found in the plastic), but will also help to limit your plastic use on a daily basis. Once you buy glass tupperware containers, you can have them for years, making them a much better long-term investment as compared to plastic tupperware that gets gross and discolored pretty quickly.

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Topics: wellness, facts, information, blog, blogger, food, health, healthy, superfoods

8 Funny Facts About Superfoods You’d Never Believe Were True

Posted by Julie Morris, Navitas Organics Executive Chef on Apr 20, 2018 2:12:01 AM


Anyone following a superfood-rich diet knows there's a litany of information surrounding the benefits of various ingredients – things like new clinical studies, antioxidant ORAC levels, essential fatty acid balance – the healthy details are endless! And although this data is motivating from a wellness standpoint, let's just say the minutiae doesn't exactly make for edge-of-your-seat reading. But superfoods aren't all cut-and-dry facts and figures! Read on for a taste of some superfood info that definitely errs on the side of fun.

1. Um, what did we do to Chia? While Chia was a staple superfood for many ancient Central American cultures, we culturally forgot about eating the healthy seed for several centuries. When it finally came back in the US in the 1970s, instead of being a food, it was turned into a novelty item, known as, yes: The Chia Pet. Even weirder, the first Chia pet to market in 1977 wasn't even a pet at all – it was just a “Chia Guy,” a sculpture of a man's head with the ability to grow an impressive height of Chia sprout hair. Luckily, Chia has since made its way off terracotta figurines and back onto our plates.

2. Mushrooms: they're just like us. Mushrooms – including all of the incredible medicinal varieties – are more closely related in DNA to humans than plants and produce vitamin D by being exposed to sunlight just like human skin. Mushrooms also have their own immune system, which may partially explain why they're so good for immunity, too.

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Topics: wellness, facts, information, blog, blogger, food, fun, funny, health, healthy, superfoods

Superfoods 101 with Miranda Hammer: Chia Seeds

Posted by Miranda Hammer on Apr 18, 2018 2:22:53 AM

Chia Seeds are the focus of the next installment of my Superfoods 101 Series. This series was created with the intention of diving into some of my favorite superfoods, discussing their nutritional benefits and showcasing a simple recipe to highlight the versatility of superfoods.

What are Chia Seeds?
Chia Seeds are now mainstream and can be easily found in supermarkets and on restaurant menus. Chia is an herb that is part of the mint family and is of Central American origin. Similar to Goji Berries and Maca, Chia Seeds have been consumed for thousands of years and are thought to have been a staple in the Aztec, Mayan and Incan diets.

Chia Seeds are multidimensional and incredibly absorptive. They become gelatinous when mixed with liquid and can serve as a thickener in recipes. The gel-like consistency is ideal for making a pudding or overnight oats, they can be sprinkled in raw seed form on yogurt, oats, vegetables or salads, or they can be added to a smoothie for a boost of nutritional benefits.

Aside from their versatility, what makes these little seedlings a superfood? They are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory. Inflammation occurs as a result of environmental and internal stressors that cause the body to react defensively. Over time, an inflammatory state can be detrimental to one’s health. Gastrointestinal (GI) diseases, such as Crohn’s, IBS and celiac disease, along with arthritis, diabetes, heart disease and Alzheimer's, are all related to inflammation.

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Topics: wellness, chia, chiaseeds, fiber, antioxidants, blog, blogger, food, health, healthy, superfoods

What Makes Greens So Healing?

Posted by Julie Morris, Navitas Organics Executive Chef on Apr 13, 2018 2:09:30 AM

If you're looking to power up your healthy diet game, plant-based superfoods are undoubtedly a great place to begin. Filled with the vitamins, minerals and protective antioxidants (and so much more!) that your body craves, these special foods offer a lot of healthy potential in every bite. And while all superfoods live up to their laudable name, some are true everyday essentials. It's this kind of championing that belongs behind the class of superfoods known simply as “green vegetables.”

Dietary systems can borderline being as divisive and polarizing as any political or religious discussion. But aside from water, there's one thing almost every dietary dogma under the sun agrees with: the power of green. So, what is it that makes this class of foods so celebrated?

Plants are energy machines.
The biggest key behind the healthy prowess of green vegetables is the very component that makes them green: chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is an antioxidant found in plants that transforms the sunshine energy they absorb into fuel through photosynthesis. Chlorophyll is often called “the blood of plants” and interestingly, is remarkably similar to the hemoglobin in human blood; the only difference is chlorophyll carries magnesium in its center, while hemoglobin carries iron. This is one of the reasons why consuming chlorophyll-rich foods can help us build our own blood, giving us the nutrients we need to create our own oxygen-carrying red blood cells. Clearly, there's a reason why you feel so energetic eating “green!”

When you increase your oxygen, you increase your healing.
The body relies on oxygen-rich blood to speed up all kinds of healing – from tissue injury and inflammation to neurological regeneration and balance. The more oxygen-rich chlorophyll you consume, the speedier your recovery.

Green also means clean.
Green vegetables have a strong link to detoxification, thanks in part to chlorophyll’s strong antibacterial qualities. But even more so, chlorophyll can help to purify your liver as well, aiding in the removal of heavy metals, drug deposits and chemical accumulation. Additionally, chlorophyll helps aid digestion by keeping blood sugar levels stable, and can even reduce chronic bad breath and body odor.

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Topics: wellness, healing, blog, eating, food, foods, greens, health, healthy, superfoods

Superfoods 101 with Miranda Hammer: Maca

Posted by Miranda Hammer on Apr 11, 2018 2:16:41 AM

Maca is in the spotlight today in this next installment of my Superfoods 101 Series. This series was created with the intention of diving into some of my favorite superfoods, discussing their nutritional benefits and showcasing a simple recipe to highlight the versatility of superfoods.

If I had to label the current trendiest superfood, I would for sure say Maca. It started appearing on the wellness scene a few years ago and has quickly gained momentum as one of the "it" superfoods. Like Goji Berries, Maca has been around for thousands of years and was a staple in the diet of Inca warriors.

What is Maca?
Maca is the powdered form of Maca root. Maca is one of the most durable and resilient plants on earth. It can withstand intense sunlight as well as high winds, freezing temperatures and high altitude. Maca is part of the family of adaptogens, which have been garnering a lot of attention, especially as of late. An adaptogen is a type of plant that helps balance the body's hormones, reduce stress and anxiety in the body, and may help achieve equilibrium by supporting the endocrine system.

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Topics: wellness, adaptogens, blog, eating, food, foods, health, healthy, Maca, superfoods

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