Whole Foods New Health Initiative Expands Options for Vegan and Dairy-Free


Whole Foods Health Starts Here InitiativeIn January, 2010, Whole Foods took a bigger stance on plant-based diets with the launch of their "Health Starts Here" initiative. While they avoid the vegan label specifically, the new initiative specifically encourages consumers to “eat mostly plants” and one of their corresponding programs is The Engine 2 Diet™ 28-Day Health Opportunity, which does essentially avoid all animal products.

But this initiative isn’t simply a handout and some information on their website, Whole Foods is putting the concept to work right in their stores, all 289 of them throughout the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. And according to a story out of the San Francisco Bay Area, the program is really starting to take root. They reported new nutritional rations in the stores, dishes cooked without oils at the hot bar, Healthy Eating Supper Clubs, and in two stores a new eatery called Café Gratitude that is serving up raw, vegan tamales, spring rolls, nut-milk shakes and more. I’m not sure how this program will expand in other states, but with luck it will mean more fresh dairy-free offerings and events for all.

Customers are encouraged to utilize the new nutritional signs (based on Dr. Fuhrman's ANDI system) and if they wish, trial out the The Engine 2 Diet. At the Cupertino, California store, 50 employees trialed the Engine 2 diet for 28 days and all lost weight. Many have opted to stay on the diet for longer.

Curious what a vegan fire fighter eats? Trial out this recipe from the Engine 2 Diet.

About Author

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

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