Essentially Alkaline is an all natural plant based herbal health store that provides raw organic, wild-crafted super foods and herbs
Donnaveo Sherman, a nutritionist and intracellular healer is on a mission, and that’s to encourage people to get healthy. Through Essentially Alkaline, an all-natural, plant-based herbal health store Sherman and his partners afford health conscious individuals in search of a second option, raw organic, wild-crafted super foods and herbs to assist maintaining a sickness free, healthy lifestyle on an affordable, cost-effective budget. The premise of an alkaline diet is that a person promotes a preferential blood pH, which is said to help the body maintain a healthy weight and optimize wellbeing. An alkaline diet’s focus is on mostly eating raw fruits, vegetables, and grains. The idea is that heating food destroys its nutrients and natural enzymes. “When you cook it, you kill it,” said Sherman. The diet is said to benefit bone density and muscle mass, lower a person’s risk for hypertension and stroke, lowers chronic pain and inflammation, boosts vitamin absorption and prevents magnesium deficiency. It is said to improve immune function and cancer protection. And can help a person maintain healthy weight. “A lot of people are looking for ways and means to eat healthy and remove disease. We’re here to give people a choice as the paradigm shifts to nutritional healing,” said Sherman, a nutritionist and intracellular healer. “We offer nutritional healing to people through the foods that they eat.” Getting a person immersed into an alkaline diet he says starts by encouraging people to modify their dietary habits and remove those foods that he says accumulate poisonous toxins inside the body. The most egregious culprit in the Bahamian diet he says is starch. “We just eat a bunch of starch. We call it different things — potato salad, white rice, macaroni … all of these different things, but it’s just starch, and then you add blood to it in the form of meat, and there’s nothing on the plate with life. There’s nothing in there that would actually enhance or regenerate your cellular matrix, which is every living cell in your body, which need the enzymes and the probiotics and what not for it to function. There’s nothing alive on that plate of food. My mission is to encourage and get people healthy because it’s cheaper to pay on the front end rather than the back end.” In this form of eating white rice he said should be replaced with wild rice (black), kamut berries or quinoa. Pasta made from wheat or semolina he said should be substituted with 100 percent quinoa, spelt or kamut pasta. Substitutes for cereal include spelt flakes or puffed kamut. For those who snack, chips can be replaced with kale chips or nori chips. And meat, fish and other animal products can be substituted with mushrooms (except for shitake.) Homemade nut milk or seed milk they recommend as a milk substitute. For sugar, agave, dates, figs, raisins are the substitutes of choice among the many choices Sherman and his team take patrons through. “It’s all about transitions and substituting specific foods for what they’re eating now.” Water he said is also an essential part of the process. He says people often feel hungry, but in fact are lacking fresh air or are dehydrated. They recommend drinking one gallon of spring water daily. He said that does not mean forcing your body to drink a gallon right away, but spreading it over the course of a day. Doing so he said greatly decreases a person’s need for eating and creates a healthier habit. “When you feel hungry, drink a glass or two of spring water,” he said. When you step through the doors to Essentially Alkaline on Rosetta Street, opposite City Corporate Centre (old City Market building) and next to Forsythe’s Communication and Family Eye Care Centre, Sherman and his team won’t leave a customer floundering. They are there to guide you and show you the foods they recommend you eat. He said they are also working on meal plans with patrons so they understand what it is they’re doing on a daily basis, so they know what they can eat for meals daily. He said it would also aid in them transitioning to eating healthy foods. For breakfast they recommend drinking spring water, coconut water, fruits or vegetables. Tea is also suitable in a breakfast they say should be light; or a boosting smoothie made with berries, baby bananas and the optional nuts to make milk. At Essentially Alkaline, their banana berry smoothie also includes Irish moss, which Sherman says contains 92 of the 102 minerals the body is comprised of, and the perfect way for a person to jumpstart their day. Lunch, he said should be the heaviest meal of the day, with dinner a much lighter fare. Patrons won’t find cooked food at Essentially Alkaline, but rather grocery items and herbs, and information on how to prepare them. “We guide people in showing them how to prepare those healthier foods, making it easier for them. When they go to the store, they can pick up the items, take the items home and they can start preparing the items, so they’re more comfortable, and don’t have to rely on having to go out to specific places to purchase food. They can actually do it themselves at home.” As they aren’t medical practitioners, Sherman said they encourage customer consultation with a doctor for diagnosing conditions for them to better serve them, as they are nutritionists and health consultants. “We can guide them. We’re actually working on meal plans to give people a little more help in the information so they can understand what it is they’re doing on a daily basis so they know what they can eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They know in terms of going to the store and purchasing specific foods that would be more adaptable to their system, how to remove or how to transition themselves away from the food that they’re currently eating, and to get on eating the healthy transitional foods.” Sherman opened the doors to Essentially Alkaline in February. He said more stores offering the services they do are needed to continue with the healing paradigm in the country. Sherman adopted and began practicing the lifestyle in 2011, and has been “deep in the trenches in research” ever since. “In The Bahamas we have come a long way — and you can see it in society itself. We have people drinking spring water and looking at the alkalinity versus the acidity; looking at specific foods to avoid, specific foods to encourage people to eat. And you can hear and see it throughout society. It’s not where we would want it to be, but people are actually looking at their health in a whole different light because of the information that was put forth in terms of nutrition and in terms of keeping the body in a healthy state,” he said. “At Essentially Alkaline we’re here to give people a choice in the world out there as the paradigm shifts to nutritional healing. It’s cheaper to pay on the front end rather than the back end,” he said.