A healthy lifestyle calls for a healthy diet. Easier said than done, am I right?
Big chain stores may stock a plethora of products, but many of them are processed, treated with chemicals or dosed with pesticides. Yummy!
Many items are labeled as “healthy alternatives,” but flashy labels and buzzwords aren’t always reliable. Thankfully West Michigan has plenty of local health-food store options to choose from. Here are just a few.
Harvest Health Foods
6807 Cascade Rd., Grand Rapids, (616) 975-7555
1944 Eastern Ave., Grand Rapids, (616) 245-6268
4150 32nd Ave., Hudsonville, (616) 896-6630
Henry Diedering, founder of Harvest Health, opened the store in 1952, after having recently emigrated from the Netherlands. Unlike the United States, grocers in the Netherlands carried mostly unprocessed, natural food items in their stores and pre-packaged foods were a rare sight. Diedering introduced this concept to his community when he opened his first store on Eastern Avenue. Two more locations have since opened and the stores’ focus remains on offering an abundance of unprocessed, organic and allergen-free foods to customers.
700 Washington St., Grand Haven, (616) 846-3026
3112 Henry St., Muskegon, (231) 739-2307
1519 East River Rd. North, Muskegon, (231) 744-0852
With three locations throughout Muskegon and Grand Haven, Health Hutt provides the lakeshore seasonal organic items, snacks for on-the-go and smoothies, and all sorts of other delicious, yet healthy, options.
Apple Valley Natural Foods
6070 Kalamazoo Ave. SE, Kentwood, (616) 554-3205
3013 West Shore Dr., Suite 70, Holland, (616) 399-8004
An exclusively vegetarian natural foods store, Apple Valley Natural Foods began as a small college food store in the basement of Emmanuel Missionary College. The business has since expanded to various locations throughout Michigan and Illinois. Oh, and if you’re having trouble finding a location near you, don’t fret — they do mail orders! No excuses.
353 Fuller Ave. NE #200, Grand Rapids, (888) 387-1187
Don’t have time to grocery shop once or twice a week? Doorganics gathers all your items for you and deliver the goods right to your front door. It works like this: Simply sign up on its website, choose what size bin you’d like (small, medium or large), choose what package you’d like (fruits, or a fruits and vegetables mix), and sign up for weekly or bi-weekly deliveries. Prices range from $29-$49 per order and include enough food for multiple meals and snacking.
Nourish Organic Market
634 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids, (616) 454-3663
Nourish Organic Market may not boast as much square footage as other health food stores included on this list, but it still packs quite a healthy punch. They manage to squeeze more locally sourced nutrition into their small storefront than you’d think possible. All of their products are either USDA Certified Organic or grown by local organic farmers. No GMO’s are included in their products, all meat and dairy comes from local animals (no factory-farmed items here) and all imported products are Fair Trade Certified.
1013 Washington Ave. #4, Holland, (616) 394-5250
Originally opened in Douglas, Mich. in 1987, Nature’s Market has since found residence in Holland. Featuring an assortment of items including local produce, organic bulk foods, vitamins, protein powders and more, Nature’s Market also has a full recipe book on its website where you can conveniently search for recipes based on the ingredients. Its website also offers e-coupons and online reference guides for living and eating healthy.
People’s Food Co-Op of Kalamazoo
507 Harrison St., Kalamazoo, (269) 342-5686
The People’s Food Co-Op of Kalamazoo is a co-op owned by well over 2,000 members of the community. To become an owner interested parties simply make a $250 investment into the store, which can be split up into payments. Members enjoy the benefits of discounted items, voting privileges and other perks. Even if you’re not a member you’re welcome to stop in and shop. It carries everything from fresh produce and baked goods to health supplements and organic pet food. Plus they have a deli on the premises serving a rotating menu consisting of breakfast burritos, hot sandwiches, soups, pot pies and more. Also, the co-op’s bulk food section makes it easy to stock up.
Natural Health Center
4610 West Main, Kalamazoo, (269) 342-9459
With a full-service store offering a variety of local and organic products, and plenty of options for allergen-free and vegan diets, you’d probably expect to pay a pretty penny. If you become a member of the Natural Health Center’s Buyer’s Club, you can pay a one-time fee and receive 20-30 percent off all items in the store. Or, if you’re simply interested in learning more about living healthy, the center also has an onsite classroom used for workshops, cooking lessons, meetings and other wellness-inspired events.
Sawall Health Foods
2965 Oakland Dr., Kalamazoo, (269)343-3619
Not only does Sawall Health Foods carry an abundance of natural foods and wellness products that other health food stores offer, they also carry an assortment of beers and wine and have pre-made sandwiches and other items available in its Grab&Go deli.
Also, check out the store’s website, complete with its own Wellness Library, a full alphabetized online reference guide to health and wellness terms and products.