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"Mom, I Love You. I Love You."

George Floyd called for his Mama when he knew his life was in jeopardy. Although she had passed on several years before, he instinctively called out for her as he also begged to breathe. He wanted his Mama to save him, to protect him, to take away the pain. Sorry for the grim intro, but as I reflect on the upcoming Mothers Day, those cries of George Floyd for his Mama just spoke to my spirit. We usually think of fathers as our protector, but really, every child knows that when they need food, attention, love, and shelter, their first instinct is to reach out to Mama. So Mothers Day 2021 is a bittersweet celebration of Mama's and a reminder that they are a treasure, for us to also honor, love and protect.

This pandemic has wreaked havoc on all areas of our personal and global lives. One fact that stands out in the midst of all the competing information regarding vaccines, masks and social distancing is that our overall health, coming into contact with Covid 19, is the most important factor in how our bodies immune system responds to this viral threat. We know that pre-existing conditions such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and all the host of health compromising chronic illnesses put us at greater risk for difficulties if we contract the virus.

From the beginning, Paradise Natural Foods has always stressed the importance of a healthy diet as an important preventative and restorative measure when it comes to our health. Because mothers often wear multiple hats, including caring for others, they can sometimes neglect their own needs and health. Society needs to encourage and empower mothers to make self care a priority, whether its mental, spiritual or taking the necessary steps to live a healthier life.

Paradise Natural Foods promotes a plant based diet as part of a healthy lifestyle. Don't worry, eating plant based doesn't mean that you can't enjoy animal products. Rather, it promotes the addition of a variety of plants, whole grains, nuts, seeds and other non-animal foods as the basis of a healthy diet. I usually tell my students in my nutrition and cooking classes that they should aim for ¾ of their plates to be vegan, and to push any animal products to the outer rim of their plate. Over time, many people find those products diminishing or falling off the plate all together. Moderation and balance is usually easier for us to achieve when we look to create a healthy lifestyle.

Many women worry about breast or ovarian cancer as their biggest health risk. However, cardiovascular disease affects women and men equally and heart disease is the number one killer of women in the U.S. The value of a plant based diet can help to improve several of the risk factors for heart disease. It can reduce the incidence of inflammation, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, which are some of the main factors that put us in the high risk group for COVID-19.

Show mom or any significant woman in your life some love by treating them to a plant based meal that is delicious and provides significant nutritional value for protecting their health. Although we need to encourage women to normalize taking care of themselves as they take care of others, Mothers Day is a reminder that their lives matter to us.

Paradise Natural Foods has created a Mothers Day menu that celebrates seasonal produce and a Strawberry and Cream cake, highlighting the fact that berries are great for all the factors which promote heart health.

Order your meal by May 7 and treat your Mama to a healthy Mothers Day brunch or dinner.

We are all in this together. We are more than just community. We are family.

Stay Safe,


-Mama (Chef) Nezaa

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