Let the Good Habits TAKE ROOT

January 22, 2017 7:00 pm by Katrina Castaneda

Great ideas sometimes emerge from unexpected life events such as having to deal with health problems from poor eating habits and overly processed diets. This is where Take Root was born, where founders Monica Mendiola and Aileen Payumo came to realize the calling in their lives – to help people heal their bodies and souls through food.

The healthy food that we had easy access to in New York wasn’t so easy to come by here. We decided we wanted to introduce a new kind of healthy snack to Filipinos. Not just your run-of-the-mill healthy alternatives, but the most delicious, crave-worthy snacks that people would feel great about eating them too. We wanted to create food that people could enjoy and indulge but come away feeling energized instead of sluggish, happy instead of regretful and light instead of bloated,” Mendiola shares.taste-takeroot

Founders Monica and Aileen

“As for the name, “Take Root”, we love its significance and what it inspires. Taking root for a tree or plant means drawing nourishment from the soil. This is the idea that we wanted to communicate through our products, this idea of eating simply, going back to basics and nourishing our bodies with high quality food from nature. The name also has significance to us personally as we are now setting down new roots back home, with a new mission and purpose in life.”

The most challenging part is being ready to make a change

Take Root is about simple, wholesome, and all natural ingredients. Founders want their customers to realize later on how they are actually doing something amazing for their bodies without depriving themselves from eating something delicious.

Kale Chips P220 each

Take Root is known for their best seller Kale Chips, made from local, pesticide-free, organic kale leaves grown in small farms in Cavite and Benguet.

Cocoroons P150 for 5pcs

The Cocoroons, which come in Lemon and Dark Cacao are made up of only a few whole food ingredients like dried coconut, coconut oil and raw cashews then pepped up with fresh lemon juice or 100% pure cacao powder.

Rooted Bar P100 each

The Rooted Bars are for those bar lovers out there who don’t want to buy preservative and chemical-laden brands that sit on the grocery shelves for years. The base of the bars is crisped rice, cassava flour and homemade cashew butter. The Tropical Cashew Cookie flavor is made with fruits with no added sweeteners. The Cacao Roasted Almond flavor is made with raw cacao from Davao that is pure and rich. Great as a pre or post-workout snack, or even for breakfast on the go, which is a great source of clean fuel.

Part of their advocacy is to work with local farmers and buy directly from small-scale farms that are independent and family-run. Take Root supports organic agriculture by working closely with small organic farms, as they want to push more and more farmers in the Philippines to grow food without pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and growth hormones. Consumers have great power and if the demand for organic products is there, the producers will rise up to meet that demand.

Take Root continues to craft new, inventive, delicious, healthy products and plans to widen product distribution. “We are working hard to make Take Root snacks more readily available for our customers by increasing our sales channels. We have started exporting to Hong Kong. In 5 years, we hope to see our products in more groceries and health food stores throughout Asia”, says Monica. “We originally created Take Root for Filipinos, but after joining a health food expo in Hong Kong earlier this year, we were bombarded with requests to make it available in other parts of Asia like Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan and even the Middle East. People are hungry for healthy food and are curious about new, creative products coming from the Philippines. They loved our products because we use ingredients native to the Philippines, like cacao, coconut, cassava flour, but create universally appealing flavors and packaged in a fun, fresh way. We want to continue along this vein and be an example of a high-quality Filipino product competing in the international market. Our goal is to stay fresh, to keep innovating and being attuned with changing tastes while staying true to who we are as a brand,” she said.taste-takerootcover

Want to switch to a healthier lifestyle but do not know where to start? Mendiola emphasized that health starts in the mind. “The most challenging part is being ready to make a change. Once you’re in that mental space, then it is all about setting small goals and taking things one step at a time. Think of it as a process, an evolution rather than a resolution. When you try to change too much, too fast it can become overwhelming. Start with one goal or habit, like eliminating processed foods from your diet. Try lessening your meat intake or make sure to eat raw vegetables with every meal and even start your day with a mug of warm water and calamansi,” she suggested.

The Take Root duo’s personal health journey led them to inspire people to “Let the good habits take root” for they believe that there is no such thing as perfection, especially when it comes to eating. “We can make seemingly small choices everyday and slowly work towards a better, happier existence. It’s okay to slip up or have a treat occasionally. Be kind to yourself!”

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