Where to Eat: Chestnut Street

We've all been there. In between meetings, running errands, on our way to the gym...and you realize: you are STARVING. Like, no-personality-light-headed-can't-go-on-hate-everyone STARVING. I'm the first to admit I get to this place more often than I'd like. Blood sugar levels are low, and the brain says, "give me fast calories immediately that can be quickly digested and turned into sugar." So all of a sudden, you have a craving for those Sour Patch Kids in line at Walgreens. Or - how nice do those Salt + Vinegar thick cut potato chips look sitting pretty on the shelf just begging to be eaten in one breath. Your brain says yes, I need food that can be processed quickly and easily. But what ends up happening is that we take in all of these refined sugars and carbohydrates, with no fiber to slow their digestion, and it's too much for the body to handle all at once. The pancreas releases extra insulin to deal with the quick influx of sugar, and this insulin escorts the sugar into your body's fat cells for storage. Whatever you do, think twice about your choices - it is these moments that you need to have a back-up plan. We can't always keep healthy snacks with us, or meal prep every Sunday. Lucky for you I have excellent will power, and have sourced some great alternatives to the unhealthy temptations on every street corner. Today's find: SEED + SALT on Chestnut Street in the Marina. 

Seed + Salt. 

What I love most about this modern, cozy cafe is the number of quick, take-away options readily available to pack or eat on the go. It's clean, organic, non-GMO, and plant-based. And bonus - there are lots of vegan, raw, and gluten-free options. Remember though, the labels "vegetarian" or "vegan" don't automatically mean they're good for you. For example, I can make a mean peanut butter cookie that's vegan, but the cup of refined sugar that goes into the recipe is not so hot for the bod. The savory choices are particularly delicious, like the beet burger with walnuts, lentils and mushrooms, and the taco salad with black beans and walnut chorizo. And the dessert menu is amazing - from almond butter cookies and raw brownies, to scones and blueberry muffins.  The number of superfood ingredients is impressive: chia seeds, goji berries, flax seeds and coconut. 

The place is a bit pricey, but the way I look at it is this: it's worth it to spend more now on healthy food than to pay the cost later with expensive medical bills, sickness, and disease. Happy eating!

Seed + Salt is located at 2240 Chestnut Street, in the Marina district of San Francisco. www.seedandsalt.com