I had the super sweet pleasure of visiting Benourished to chat with founder Julie McClure recently. Stepping into her nutrition house atelier on Avenue Road, I was immediately drawn to the fresh design and vibrant mood the space evoked: clean, minimalistic wood counters and shelves with color pops of brilliant green. It’s no wonder tons of people love stopping by the shop to get in on some Benourished living inspiration. The lovely Julie offered me some fresh Kale Kicker chips as she began to walk me through the basis and culture of her company.

V: What inspired you to start Benourished?

J: Personal reasons mostly, I was experiencing inflammatory chronic migraines frequently but slowly found solutions through changing my diet. I was inspired to share this and create something accessible in Canada and began studying naturopathic medicine. It’s been quite a journey since I left in 2008 to travel and learn about healthy living. I began to incorporate lots of raw food and green juicing while experimenting and researching on my own before further studying botanical clinical nutrition, physiology and anatomy courses that helped me develop products.

Read more after the jump.

V: What are some significant benefits of healthy, conscious, clean eating? Foods are so processed now that it probably irritates the digestive system!

J: There are huge benefits and big differences with cleansing and raw eating. A lot of people see improvements in clearer and glowing skin. This is natural because the skin is like a blueprint of what’s going on inside the body. Bloating also goes away and you’d feel noticeably lighter because by eating clean, the body metabolizes in its natural efficient form especially with the removal of stimulants, like caffeine and alcohol. Without these stimulants, the body will have better mental clarity, increased energy and peaceful sleeps. At Benourished, we also focus on superfoods with antioxidants especially since we live in a world with a lot of chemicals, antioxidants work to take stress off the body and help with anti-aging.

V: Tell us a bit about the cleanse programs that you offer.

J: All of our cleanses are gentle with no supplements or laxatives and are food based so that you can continue to go through day to day business without feeling tired. The GLOW cleanse is ideal for first timers who want more substance to the cleanse, more calories and basically will juice until dinner. Glow provides you with four juices, a raw snack, a dinner and an organic loose leaf tea. This is a well-balanced starter and is often used as a stepping stone into SPROUT, which consists of six juices a day. Our juices are alkalizing, dairy-free, gluten-free and made with organic and local ingredients. Sprout provides your body with energy-rich chloraphyll. Finally, our Shine-Energy cleanse is the most intense, packed full with nutrients and is available in two levels and includes a multi-ounce shot of a high anti-oxidant fiber drink. It’s important to drink a lot of water in between during the cleanses.

J: Sprout has the most variety, Shine is different but the core is to have chlorophyll which is amazing for blood cleansing and as a source of energy. Its molecule is similar to hemoglobin, think red blood cells, and it provides the body with energy to work in a more optimal state in an alkaline environment that speeds up metabolism. As a result, the digestive tract works more and detoxifies.

V: Awesome! So now, a bit more about you… what’s your ideal meal?

J: I enjoy small and frequent meals throughout the day, usually an organic salad packed with vegetables and fruits. I’d like to have a kale salad with beet slaw, tofu, nuts and seeds for lunch.

V: Ideal dessert?

J: Gluten-free chocolate chip cookies.

V: Yum. And your space is so beautiful and welcoming! What’s a typical day here like?

J: I’m glad you like the space, I worked with a designer to come up with a fresh concept to inspire the mind, body and soul which is what Benourished is all about. Keeping it simple. Here at the shop, usually, Misty is at the front and I’m in and out keeping busy with new business opportunities, development and administration. I don’t have typical days because I’m always on the go especially with our orders of TIFF, Union Fit, The Detox Market and Pusateri’s. It’s a busy season too… fall is like another New Year, probably because we’re conditioned as children like a new school year for a fresh start except this time with health! There’s definitely a pick up in demand for products and some people even come in four times a week and stock up on stuff before going away for the weekend.

Later on, I also found out that Julie is a yoga instructor as she explained how rewarding teaching in other ways is to her, studying under Ayurvedic teachings. Coming from my own yoga community, I completely feel her on what a great vibe and sense of energy it can have. I left Benourished that day with a ginormous smile on face, feeling great with a cooler bag full of goodies thanks to Julie. My favourite takeaway was the Be Fit smoothie and delicious raw food snack bars (Almond Allure and Coconut Dream)! I could definitely get used to this cleansing and juicing lifestyle.

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