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Natural Awakenings Lehigh Valley

Easton Café Owner Promotes Healthy Food Relationships

Aug 29, 2018 12:00AM ● By Sheila Julson

Like many people, Sarah Hinsch jumped on board the fat-free food wave that was popular during the 1980s and 1990s. She meticulously counted grams of fat and calories and ate processed foods labeled fat-free, unaware of how those items were full of harmful chemicals and food stabilizers. After years of self-education, an eye-opening slow food experience, and the birth of her daughter, Hinsch gradually healed her body with whole, organic foods. She wanted to open a café to offer healthful foods to others, and in May 2014, she launched Greenmouth juice café.

“I was always food-obsessed, but not in a good way,” reflects Hinsch, who was born in Scranton. Her family moved to Missouri and later to Tennessee, and her teen diet consisted primarily of fat-free convenience foods. She also consumed a lot of sugar. When she was 19, her gynecologist diagnosed her with polycystic ovarian syndrome and told her she’d never get pregnant.

Hinsch studied at Lenoir-Rhyne University, in Hickory, North Carolina, where she majored in political science. She had an opportunity to do an internship at the White House, and during that time, she developed an interest in wine and fine dining. “I was still afraid of fat and closely monitored what I ate, but after college, my best friend moved to Northern England. I traveled there for the first time and witnessed the slow foods movement,” she enthuses, “they had a butcher, a milkman, an egg lady and a spice market. This fascinated me, and it felt so real in the way food had always been sourced.”

Slowly, Hinsch changed her way of eating and conquered her fear of fats, adding plant-based fats like avocados into her diet. Her interest in nutrition and whole foods grew, and she became certified as a nutritionist at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, in New York City. Then, despite being told years earlier that she couldn’t get pregnant, at age 34, Hinsch found out she was expecting.

“I knew it was because I healed my body through the food choices I had been making, so I went full-on and started juicing for the health of my baby,” she says. “My sugar cravings disappeared, I looked better, felt better and I had more energy and a lust for life. I wanted to share my story with others and give them support and encouragement.”

Five years ago, Hinsch moved to Lehigh Valley to be close to local farmers. She found out that a café on Northampton Street, in Easton, was about to close, so with only $5,000 and a small Vitamix blender, she took a leap of faith and opened the first Greenmouth juice café location. She has since moved the Easton location to 2nd Street, and she opened an additional Greenmouth café in Allentown.

Both Greenmouth cafes offer a variety of raw, cold-pressed juices, smoothies and scratch-made sandwiches, salads, soups and Buddha bowls crafted from Hinsch’s own recipes. Greenmouth also offers signature espresso, coffee drinks, tea, kombucha and lemonade. Hinsch sources local and organic ingredients in large volume from area farmers, and although the process is labor-intensive and more costly than offering non-organic and pre-made items, she’s proud to offer quality nutritious foods. She praises her team of dedicated employees, especially Amy Franquet, who has been instrumental in building the café and craft many recipes.

Customer favorites among the cold-pressed juices include Detoxify, made with kale, apples, romaine, celery, parsley, lemon and ginger; and Energize, with beets, apples, romaine, celery, carrots, oranges and ginger. The superfood smoothies are made from a rainbow of fruits and vegetables with options like Lean & Green, a protein-packed drink with kale and spirulina, or Chocolate Prana, featuring raw cacao, banana, almond butter, maca, hemp hearts and warming cinnamon and vanilla.

Hinsch’s knowledge of nutrition is evident in many of the recipes: the turmeric lemonade contains a hint of black pepper, which helps the body better absorb curcumin, the main anti-inflammatory property in the turmeric root. Food menu favorites include Buddha bowls and avocado toast. Hinsch will expand with menu with items that have a healthy spin on approachable favorites—vegan waffles, beet burgers and vegan nachos. She plans to add catering options and to partner with local breweries for pop-up dinners.

Although Hinsch maintains a day job as a wholesale manager in the wine industry, it allows her to travel and research food and beverage scenes in other cities. Today, Hinsch has a positive relationship with food. “I healed my body through food, and I want to make these wholesome foods accessible for people so they can also learn how the body can heal itself, “ she says. “There’s no magic pill for good health. You have to love yourself and be patient, and don’t hate yourself if you cheat one day with pizza and beer. Don’t see food as an enemy. Be grateful for it.”

Greenmouth is located at 21 N. 7th St., Allentown, and 134 N. 2nd St., Easton. For more information, call 610-810-8302 (Allentown), 484-560-5136 (Easton) or visit GreenmouthJuiceCafe.com

Sheila Julson is a Milwaukee based freelance writer and contributor to Natural Awakenings magazines throughout the country.

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