Healthy Starts

Get juiced for a new year

Get It


WHAT: Big Love Juice
WHEN: 8:30am-4:30pm
WHERE: 1155 N. State St. and 1144 10th St.

WHAT: Electric Beet Juice Co.
WHEN: 8am-6pm Mon.-Fri.; 9am-5pm Sat.
WHERE: 1313 N. State St.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

In the aftermath of the holiday season many of us will feel the need to press “re-set” on our bodies and start the new year with a clean slate that promises energy and vitality. This is a good time to consider a juice-focused cleanse, and the good news is that Bellingham has two retailers specializing in healthy dietary starts.

Big Love Juice, with locations in Fairhaven and the Herald building, opened last spring with a mission to make juices, smoothies and healthy, nutritious foods at a reasonable price point. The juices are cold-pressed, explains Elisa Brackenhofer, who runs BLJ with her mother, Lisa Thomson.

“Basically, we take fruit and vegetables, put them in a bag and apply 12,000 pounds of pressure to extract the juice,” Brackenhofer says. “This keeps all the nutrients and enzymes intact, unlike the juices you buy at the store.”

Don’t come looking for regular orange or apple juice here. Big Love Juice creates six different blends from 20 juices that include unusual flavors such as fennel, grapefruit, ginger, parsley, celery, beet, spinach, blueberry, cilantro and basil. Customers can choose miniature wellness shots, or dairy-free smoothies composed of blended micro-greens and coconut milk. Solid food options include salads, “soul bowls,” toast with toppings, and granola breakfast bowls.

Big Love Juice offers three-day plans that deliver a full-body cleanse or dietary supplement for patrons looking for a jumpstart to a healthier lifestyle. Programs include “Lean & Clean” ($39), “Refresh” ($45), and “Power” ($55). Each program contains a bottled beverage schedule outlining what should be consumed each day for best results, and when.

A few blocks down the road is the Electric Beet Juice Company, owned by Kira Marklin. Previously operating out of the Bellingham Public Market on Cornwall Avenue, Marklin moved to State Street after Terra Organica went out of business, and now manages a spacious, light-filled 18-seat restaurant with high ceilings and soft, soothing colors.

“Everything we do here is organic, even down to the condiments,” she says of the menu.

It’s the juices that steal the limelight—a variety that range in taste and complexity to suit novice juice-drinkers and longtime juicers looking for enhanced benefits. “People who feel they haven’t had enough vegetables that day can swing in and get up to four veggies in a cup to go,” Marklin explains. There are also one-ounce wellness shots, smoothies and a small solid food menu with spring rolls, salads and sandwiches.

Electric Beet Juice’s cleanse programs also cater to different levels of juicers, from beginners to advanced. Marklin says the programs typically last three-to-five days and are customized based on the kind of cleanse each person is seeking. The cleanses include six juices per day and range in price from $150 for a three-day beginners program up to $345 for an advanced-level six-day program.

Marklin says some of her clients take on a cleanse program because they simply don’t have the time or energy to focus on preparing their own food—nor do they want to eat fast food.

“The cleanses,” she says, “are a great way to help break through food craving cycles and kickstart healthy lifestyle changes.”


Benefits of a Juice Cleanse

1. Floods digestive system with more plant nutrients than supplied by an average diet

2. Improves energy, decreases brain fog

3. Breaks through craving cycles and sugar addictions

4. Increases friendly bacteria in gut; decreases bacteria leading to obesity

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