By Kyu Kim
There are numerous ways to contribute to the Black Lives Matter movement, but sometimes it feels difficult to juggle the recommended actions with work and home responsibilities. No matter how much we do for the movement, it never feels like enough and making true progress seems dismal at times.
Instead of getting discouraged, though, why don’t we refuel ourselves with healthy and yummy food that also supports the black community? Your decreased enthusiasm might just be a symptom of low blood sugar! Besides, there are fabulous products created by black entrepreneurs which should be celebrated for their own merits. It is a great time to explore and try them (more on that later).
This insight crossed my mind while I was attending a Zoom meeting. I prefer to eat healthy meals made with real food but, sometimes, I run out of time between meetings. Also, it can be awkward to eat in some Zoom meetings regardless of the status of my stomach. Besides, when I want to focus, eating a meal that requires a lot of chewing and digesting can be distracting.
Breakfast bars are laden with high sugar content and I cannot trust myself to keep a stash at home; I eat too many of them in one sitting. So, when I discovered a plant-based protein smoothie called Koia at Whole Foods, I decided to give it a try. Each smoothie is around 200 calories, just like a regular breakfast bar, but the ingredients are clean and low in sugar. As you can guess, I fell in love with the product and now I keep a few of them in my fridge for whenever I need an emergency meal replacement.
Then I looked up Koia online (as I do for many products that I use). As a millennial, I value buying products from conscious companies versus evildoers to ensure that my purchases contribute to a better world. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Koia was co-founded by Maya French, a seriously awesome female Black entrepreneur with an admirable mission and who has been on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list.
Okay, that was a detour, but it is how I came up with the idea to research health-conscious products founded by the Black community to share with Sternies. Many of us love eating healthy. Along with proper sleep and exercise, it is one of the ways that we take care of ourselves. These habits allow us to stay happy and productive, and fight for justice!
Below are a few products and restaurants that you can fall in love with that are founded by or owned by a member of the Black community. I also added a healthy treat option as well as a wine company to fulfill balancing efforts and to celebrate small victories. Enjoy!
Note: This list is not exhaustive, and a simple Google search can provide even more lists that are tailored to your taste buds, location, and retailer of your choice.
- [found at Whole Foods and/or other supermarkets ] Koia was co-founded by Maya French. Some flavors are much better than others in my opinion, and my two favorites are Banana Chocolate and Vanilla Bean.
- [if you are near Chelsea or Columbus] Blossom restaurant was co-founded by Pamela Elizabeth. If you are an animal lover and/or want to try out tasty vegan food, look no further.
- [If you order from Walmart] Sanaia Applesauce was created by Keisha Jeremie. This Shark Tank-featured applesauce is made with organic green apples and comes in two varieties, unsweetened & guava.
- [If you live near Target] Partake was created by Denise Woodard for her daughter who has food allergies. These simple cookies come in flavors like carrot cake, ginger snap, birthday cake, and chocolate chip. If you desire cookies, partake in this movement. Gluten-free and allergen-free, Vegan, low in calories (yet delicious!).
- [If you developed a wine habit during the pandemic] The McBride Sisters co-founded by sisters Robin and Andréa McBride. Their collections of red, white, and rosé wines can be found at Target, Walmart, and other nationwide chains.
- [Amazon, or order from the website directly] Golde was co-founded by Trinity Mouzon Wofford. She believes that being well should taste good, and help you feel like your best self. Golde sells a superfood-boosted latte blend such as Cacao Turmeric Latte Blend.