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How Fast Food Just Got Way Healthier

Green is good
Photo by Tom Pennington

Well someone had to do it. Chicago based Native Foods Cafe is a vegan “fast food” chain that is rapidly expanding and may be coming to a town near you to add a healthier choice to your fast food options.

In fact, Vegan restaurant chain Native Foods Cafe has raised $15 million to help fund a national expansion effort. Private-equity firms Lauren Crown Partners LLC and Huntington Capital LP is the most recent investor and it follows $10 million in investments in the company last year.

Currently they have 16 restaurants in four states. The company is slated to open a dozen restaurants this year and grow that to more than 200 in five years.

This really accelerates our expansion,” said Daniel Dolan, chairman and chief executive officer of Native Foods. “In the second half of the year, we’ll open one about every three weeks and by January, we’ll start opening two a month.”

That is an ambitious plan but not a surprise given the movement across the country to eat healthier and consume more vegetables. Many restaurants and homes now grow their own vegetables via vertical gardening and more information can be found here.

Some of the benefits to growing your own fruits and vegetables via vertical gardening:
. Soil-free system means there is no weeding, tilling, kneeling, or getting dirty
. No gardening experience is necessary
. Fits easily on urban patios, decks, porches, balconies, terraces, or rooftop gardens
. Grows many fruits and almost any vegetable, herb, or flower
. You can grow up to 28 plants in one Tower
. Uses as little as 10% of traditional growing nutrients & water

You can find additional information and instructional videos on vertical gardening at the Facebook page

Native Food Café meals are also made from scratch and a current delicious feature is BBQ Brisket Ciabatta with sweet potato fries. Whether you grow your own or visit a local Native Foods Café for lunch, one thing is certain and that is healthier food means healthier people.

Darren Hunter is a wellness educator and his website is

Eat better with him on Twitter

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