If you’re a regular here at Garden Eats then you already know we L O V E to feature socially conscious, community-based businesses. Possibly one of the most ethical I’ve met so far is San Diego’s very own, The GoodOnYa Bar. Started in 2008, The GoodOnYa Bar is made right up the street from us in Encinitas using solar energy! Kristen, The GoodOnYa Bar’s founder joined us for a very authentic chat about how to keep New Year’s resolutions thriving everyday of the year. We got to glean her insight into how to choose the best organics, making time for exercise and finding your own groove by developing healthy lifestyle choices.
We hope this will inspire you to set goals that benefit you, your family and the community around you. To help kick start your new healthy year, Kristen is giving Garden Eats readers a chance to win The GoodOnYa Bars specially delivered to your door.
- Like The GoodOnYa Bar on Facebook.
- Like Garden Eats on Facebook.
- Offer a tip on being connected to food and the community here in the comments or at our Facebook page.
- US National Team 1990-2000
- 1996 Olympian
- Certified Nutritionist
- Founder/CEO GoodOnYa deli (established 2001) and The GoodOnYa Bar (established 2008-ish)
***it’s that easy!***
Please welcome Kristen as we talk about the evolution of healthy lifestyle design.
Kristen’s Vital Stats:
Garden Eats: Hi Kristen, happy holidays! What’s new at Good On Ya Bar this post-holiday season? Busy with deliveries?
Kristen: Busy trying to find more places to deliver too:). We recently got into all 37 Whole Foods Markets in Nor Cal so we are trying to build our brand awareness up there. We are in about 100 stores, but we are V E R Y small compared to the other bars. It’s all about volume with food!
Garden Eats: You know I love socially conscious acts- other companies are always asking us how they can get involved at a community level- you did something really cool for Encinitas this year. Tell readers about it please.
Kristen: We donated one box of bars for every box sold in December to the Encinitas Community Resource Center. I read an article on hunger and it blew me away! I figure if we break even what’s it to me, and then we can donate some food :).
Garden Eats: What did you decide to give the health-loving friends and family in your life this year?
Kristen: One of my favorite quotes is “the more you know the less you need”. I have been sort of a minimalist freak. But I do try and find fun things, especially for my nephews and niece- organic clothes, organic chocolates. I give supplements that I know my sister in law likes, like vit d with fish oil; things I know people want, use and need. I also like to give essential oils- super fun and something the average person doesn’t know much about.
Garden Eats: We know no matter how busy you are, you make time to paddle out into the surf or go for a hike- what advice do you have for fellow entrepreneurs to help them stay active during the holiday rush and beyond?
Kristen: Honestly I don’t know how people do it that have kids and regular jobs. At the end of the day I am busy but I am my own boss and the freedom that comes with (it) is priceless. I know if there is a good time to surf I can do it b/c I know I can work into the night. But the best and real advice I can give to busy people is to know that it really doesn’t take much time. Remember those commercials in the 80’s “You too can have a body like this. Just 3x a week, 30 minutes a day”. All the rage now is “burst training”. Exercise actually causes a lot of stress on the body. So the days of long cardio workouts are over, it’s old school thinking.
Garden Eats: Along with taking time to rejuvenate and de-stress with fitness, we hear from our business owning clients that they don’t have time to eat. Have any tips or tricks that help stay hydrated and well-fed throughout the day?
Kristen: Oh well that is an easy one, a GoodOnYa Bar:). Well, honestly, when we think like that we aren’t making health a priority. When you make the connection between food and true health you will then start to find a way to make it happen. When I used to work in the deli’s, (I don’t anymore b/c I have an awesome staff) I’d wake up at 5:00, get to work by 6 and then it would be busy until about 2. We wouldn’t eat or even go to the bathroom. It’s total insanity. You just have to do it. And by “it” I mean plan ahead, that is the key! Prep and have stuff with you. I carry a little soft cooler around with me most days when I have to drive a lot. But I am always running in and out of health food stores so that makes it easier. But seriously, it’s about prepping!
Garden Eats: Did you participate in the kitchen this year for the holidays or did you do the dishes?
Kristen: Well, this sort of touches on your last question. We don’t cook if you can believe that. I know a lot about food, but I don’t make the time to prep it. Another couple and I share a private chef. It’s really not that expensive. He comes every Monday with meals for the week, all to my specs and standards. He brings the stuff in glass and he picks up the glass containers from the week before. So, we always have soups, salads and meats on hand that we just have to heat up. So yes, I do a lot of dishes but that’s it:). It’s totally worth it to me b/c now I can surf for 2 hours after work and I don’t stop for a burrito on the way home like I did when I was younger.
Garden Eats: Prop 37 should have won at the polls, but it didn’t. Have any tips to help people get non-GMO foods on their dinner tables this year?
Kristen: UGH. Silly Americans. Props that raise the cost of things are historically hard to pass in CA. The six largest chemical companies in the world spent over a million dollars a day in the final month, all lies! We are the only industrialized country in the world that doesn’t label GMO’s and now more and more are out-right banning them! It’s easy if you live in a place like San Diego to get 100% GE free. Well, not easy, forget about going to a restaurant!
The only way is to buy organic. But here is the deal. Most of the GM ingredients are in junk/processed/packaged food. So avoid that anyway. If you are going to buy it, say cereal or cookies, get organic. And, then buy organic animal products. I only buy animal products that are from animals fed their natural diet, so that usually isn’t soy and corn! Even the organic stuff is fed organic soy and corn, not gmo, but not good for you (or the animal). So the trick is organic and then when it’s meat and dairy and butter it should come from cows that are 100% grass fed. 100%!
… and, then find a farmer that doesn’t feed it’s chickens soy. Chickens need a lot of protein, especially to lay all year long. So poultry and eggs are some of the worst commercial food out there. Learn what the natural diet of the animal is and buy that! Sometimes you luck out b/c you even save money b/c it’s a smaller farmer- they might not be “certified” organic but practice organic (GE note: the cert is super expensive) For example, the cow we bought last year from Palomar mountain named Daisy- it was sort of sad, but she was amazingly nutritious, she had a nice life, she was loved and cared for. The circle of life. Another side note, the best book on this topic is called “The Vegetarian Myth” by Lierre Keith. A must read! (Garden Eats has read it- it’s a great book that discusses the socio-cultural beliefs and myths about our food system etc).
Garden Eats: Thanks Kristen!
The GoodOnYa Bar stands behind company practices that benefit you and the community by using solar energy, ethical ingredients and packaging that is sourced from responsible resources. We’re in love with what they stand for! To learn more about their cafes and bars, please visit their interactive website here.