Want to feel and look your best? That requires a whole arsenal of health and wellness resources. Luckily, the Bay Area has tons to offer—and we've curated the best of them for you. Here are our picks for the yoga and fitness classes, healthy foods, healers, and more.
(From the editors: This guide was originally published in January 2017 and has been updated to reflect the latest news and closures.)
Eat Up: The Healthiest Restaurants, Juice Cleanses, Cookbooks + More in the Bay Area
(Courtesy of Little Gem, via Facebook)
This article was updated on January 3, 2018
In Raw. Vegan. Not Gross (2016, Flatiron Books), YouTube star Laura Miller offers more than 100 entirely vegan and mostly raw recipes for those who want to eat delicious food and feel good. Food photographer Erin Gleeson's gorgeously illustrated cookbook, The Forest Feast Gatherings (2016, Abrams), is packed with 100 simple vegetarian recipes designed for relaxed entertaining. In Afro-Vegan (2014, Ten Speed Press), renowned chef and food justice activist Bryant Terry reworks and remixes the classic dishes of the African Diaspora to present new and creative culinary combinations that will amaze vegans, vegetarians, and omnivores alike. In The Anti-Inflammation Cookbook (2015, Chronicle Books), Williams-Sonoma's head chef Amanda Haas joins forces with Dr. Bradly Jacobs to explain which foods are most beneficial for those who suffer from inflammation and shares 65 recipes that feature inflammation-busting ingredients. A quarterly magazine for food lovers, Gluten Free Forever collects recipes from top chefs, tutorials for mastering gluten-free cooking, and a whole lot of fun and stunning photography. The newly released Alternative Vegan by Instagram food darling, Marie Reginato, shatters the notion that there's a one size fits all diet, and pushes the boundaries of what being vegan means with an array of delectable recipes.
HEALTHY MEAL DELIVERY
Sakara Life launched its nutrition-focused meal delivery program in the Bay Area in 2016 after finding success in NYC and L.A. Big name celebs (ahem, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Hudson and Chrissy Teigen) are hooked on the brand's delicious plant-based and organic meals. All the gluten- and dairy-free meals at Methodology are customized to suit your body type, personal preferences, health goals, and allergies. Thistle also delivers GF and DF meals, as well as cold-pressed juices, to the homes and offices of busy, health-conscious foodies all around the Bay Area. Once a week, Purple Carrot ships everything you need to prepare quick-and-easy vegetarian meals in 40 minutes or less. Berkeley-based Three Stone Hearth's weekly menu features nutrient-rich foods with maximum digestibility such as black bean chili, cottage pie with cauliflower mash, and even maple-vanilla tapioca pudding. Sprig delivers super-healthy meals such as grilled chicken with marinara and spaghetti squash made from organic and sustainably sourced ingredients. Sun Basket drops off pre-measured, farm-fresh ingredients and easy recipes at your door. Choose from a variety of different dishes such as pan-seared wild salmon and pork blade chop with paleo and gluten-free options (we love their zebra eggplant bowl). Green Tiffin takes meal delivery to another level with plant-based sustainable food, eco-friendly delivery (e-bike), and reusable double-decker "tiffins" that come in a burlap sack that keeps food cold and creates zero waste. Their menu consists of vegan eats loaded with flavor—this week's menu has spinach chia-goji salad and falafel burger; ola pakora and eggplant parmigiana; and feta frittata and pumpkin pea curry. Those seeking vegetarian meals will be thrilled to discover Veestro. Their 100 percent plant-based, organic, non-GMO, and chef-prepared entrees and juices are available a la carte, in meal packs, and there's even a gluten-free feast and weight loss menu plan. On the menu are black bean pasta alfredro, Indian kamut stew, and red curry. If you want to put a little legwork in, Terra's Kitchen will provide everything you need, while still allowing you to feel like a Top Chef champ. Choose from 40 mouthwatering recipes created by their culinary team each week, and receive chopped ingredients with recipe cards. The options range from simpler eats to gourmet items like pesto goat cheese vegetable flatbreads, spicy chili-garlic cod with cauliflower puree, Mexican chicken chili, and grilled Wagyu steak with charred red pepper steak sauce. They also have pre-portioned meal kits as well as paleo, vegetarian, and gluten-free options.
RESTAURANTS WITH VEGAN + GLUTEN-FREE FOCUS
Locally sourced and globally inspired, the menu at Millenium (5912 College Ave, Oakland) is constantly evolving. Souley Vegan (301 Broadway, Oakland) is full of traditional Southern flavors; chow down on seitan steaks, sweet potato waffles, battered kale, and fried okra. Shizen (370 14th St, Mission) prepares authentic Japanese dishes free of seafood, meat, dairy, or any other animal byproduct. Try their kale and beet salads, smoked bean curd and grilled mushroom skewers, and intricate sushi rolls made with spicy tofuna (that's faux tuna), avocado, and chili tobiko. San Francisco's newest healthy addition, Little Gem (400 Grove St, Hayes Valley) comes from Eric Lilavois (former chief operating officer of the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group), chef Dave Cruz (Ad Hoc), and Wall Street guru John DiFazio. Offering a menu that's gluten-, dairy- and refined sugar-free, Little Gem wins for its morning salads that promise a green start to the day. Serving up flavor-forward cuisine that caters to vegans, vegetarians and those with gluten sensitivity, menu items at True Food Kitchen (180 El Camino Real, Palo Alto + 120 Broadway Lane, Walnut Creek) are based on the anti-inflammatory diet principles of wellness superstar and father of integrative medicine Dr. Andrew Weil. For dessert, Pepples Donut Farm (6037 San Pablo Ave, Oakland), a strictly vegan donut maker, will put any sweet tooth at ease with their grand selection of fried, filled, and glazed decadence or grab a sweet vegan treat and a individual pot of tea at the ever-popular Timeless Coffee Roasters and Bakery (4252 Piedmont Ave, Oakland) in Oakland. The Butcher's Son has an ever changing menu with a variety of in house-made "meats" and "cheeses" that will make you rethink what it means to be vegan. Their plant-based takes on deli classics and delectable pastries include meatball grinders, fried chicken, pulled pork and bacon patty melts. Head over to Gracias Madre for vegan Taco Tuesdays and gorge on fried cauliflower with cashew-based queso in a warm tortilla.
ULTIMATE JUICE CLEANSES
If a lifestyle reset is what you're looking for, Urban Remedy's new Metta-morphosis will address body, mind, and spirit with its combination of green juices and real foods (there is chewing!), as well as daily guided meditations, contemporary yoga, and movement videos. Adorably presented, Can Can Cleanse's mason jar-packed cleanse options range from all juice, mostly green, to mostly juice with some nut milk and a light dinner salad. The Classic Reset is Project Juice's liquid-only cleanse that helps get rid of pesky cravings and fire up your newfound clean-eating habits. Six bottles include a D-Tox blend of chlorophyll, mint, green apple, and young coconut water, as well as the signature indulgence, Cashew Mylk. If you're an experienced cleanser looking to up your juice-fast game this 2017, Juice Shop's Pro Cleanse offers an all-green organic vegetable juice cleanse with no fruit added. Pressed Juicery has three different cleanse options: for first time cleansers and athletes (rich in protein and complex carbohydrates); those who want a balanced cleanse and juices with high efficacy; and their most intense, lowest calorie option for experienced cleansers. The Juice Shop provides four levels of liquid fasting from beginner to pro. Each level is filled with greens and anti-inflammatory goodies to battle toxins and increase energy levels. Project Juice, too, offers multiple cleanses including rejuvenation, classic reset, seasonal, and advanced. The cold-pressed juices rely on plant protein from leafy greens and organic fruit to detox and eliminate cravings. In addition to juices, rejuvenation also includes chef-crafted soups with detox-supporting herbs, digestion-enhancing probiotics, superfood snack, and cleansing tea.
HEALING BONE BROTH
Sample meaty juiciness in the off-menu flight of lamb, turkey, and mixed-meat broths at The Whole Beast (1028 Market St, Mid-Market). Proposition Chicken's (1750 Market St, Mid-Market) broth is made from water, Mary's free-range air-chilled chicken bones, mirepoix, and herbs that are simmered for 24 hours. Mekong Kitchen's (4039 18th St, Castro) chicken and beef bone broths include a mixture of marrow, neck, and tendons for a rich, dense taste. Proper Food's (multiple locations) cup of broth comes teeming with roasted free-range chicken, bone broth, oregano, thyme, Aleppo pepper, and sea salt. In addition to their standard to-go cups of broth, sustainable butcher-restaurant Belcampo Meat Co. (1998 Polk St, Nob Hill) is spiking their libations with the good stuff: The Boney Mary comes with barley spirit, organic tomato, bone broth, shotgun sauce, horseradish, lemon, black pepper, and spices, while the Bone Broth Toddy offers a piping hot mug with broth, Amontillado sherry, shotgun sauce, Calabrian chile, sage, rosemary, and lemon zest. Regenerate without feeling overly fatigued or starved with Happy Moose Juice. Try their full or mini cleanses packed with antioxidants, vitamins, and living enzymes to restore balance.
Tea is the new coffee at Samovar Tea Lounge (411 Valencia St, Mission), where latte lovers can grab a wonderfully nuanced chai, which simmers all day in handmade copper urns, a shot of creamy, grassy matcha, or a turmeric latte with a fresh crack of black pepper on top. Asha Tea House's (2086 University Ave, Berkeley) Pineapple Oolong, a sweet delicate tea paired with fresh seasonal fruit puree, is perfect for days when it's too hot for coffee. Meanwhile, Boba Guys (8 Octavia St #308, Hayes Valley) focuses on ethically sourced and local ingredients for the highest-quality boba tea in town. Ask for yours with almond milk and honey instead of sugar to make sure you're getting maximum health benefits. For a tea education, cozy up to the bar at Chinatown's Vital Tea Leaf (509 Grant Ave, Chinatown), where the Blue People Oolong offers a solid coffee alternative with an added kick of sweet ginseng. Not feeling tea? An Espresso Date Shake at Nourish Cafe (189 6th Ave, Richmond), made with banana, dark roast coffee, cacao, dates, almond milk, and a pinch of sea salt, will get you through the day. Head over to the Tea House of the Sacred Heart at the Center SF for a zenned-out Esalen-like experience. As one of the most serene tea rooms in the city, get suggestions from the tea connoisseurs, do some yoga, and or learn about cannabis consciousness and biomimicry. Drop in, or as a member, enjoy as many teas you'd like.
Marshall's Farm (159 Lombard Rd, American Canyon) harvests small quantities of gourmet honey in the microclimates of the San Francisco Bay Area. Seasonal blooms such as eucalyptus, Star Thistle, wildflower, and blackberry are used to craft their 100 percent pure natural honeys. Pick up a jar at Whole Foods or Bi-Rite. Steve Gentry of Steve's Bees specializes in raising local honeybee survivor stock (bees that can thrive in the local ecology). Find him selling honey, beeswax and propolis, candles, soap, lip balm, and hand salve at farmers markets in Orinda, San Ramon, Danville and Walnut Creek. Bay Area Bee Company manages each of its hives without the use of pesticides, antibiotics or other chemicals, using hand-raised queens for optimal hive strength. Catch them at Moschetti's Coffee Roastery in Vallejo every Saturday morning.