Food can change your life. Maria and Juan Pablo (JP) Veloz believe that.
Maria and JP, who are from Colombia and Venezuela, respectively, launched Fit You Meals in February 2015. Why? To show Charlotteans how food choices could make them happier and healthier.
Fit You Meals delivers healthy and organic meals to Charlotte homes. I first encountered their dishes during the May 21 #WeLoveCLT talk.
Here are the five things that popped out to me.
The Veloz family had its share of health problems. JP had high cholesterol, and Maria’s mother, Olga Brown, was pre-diabetic and suffering from gout and high cholesterol, in addition to other age-related medical problems.
Maria wasn’t happy with her weight.
Just six months after revamping family recipes with healthier oils, sugars and cooking methods, JP’s cholesterol normalized, Olga went from taking nine pills a day to just several vitamins, Maria felt happier in her own skin, and Diego, Maria and JP’s son, started eating more veggies.
Type-A personality? No problem.
These chefs customize meals (less than $20) to fit fitness/lifestyle goals.
When you set up your home-delivery system (did I mention you don’t have to go to a store?), you get to pick the portions and sizes of the meal items coming your way.
All meals are cooked the same day they are delivered and in small batches, Maria said, so “I don’t mind making changes (for customers).”
Maria has a whole bunch of recipes she compiled from her family and JP’s family.
“We transformed them into healthy recipes,” she said.
They add a nutritional spin with ingredients such as coconut oil and coconut sugar and make everything from scratch — sauces and dressings included.
Glimpse it: Pork Loin with Cilantro Pesto
They showed up in a big way for Garrett Tichy (Co-owner of Hygge, a coworking space in Charlotte) after he sent an email to his followers indicating that he had bitten off more than he could chew with #WeLoveCLT.
Maria and JP responded with the offer to sponsor food for the next event on May 21, which brought in about 100 guests on May 21.
“When they responded to me I was blown away,” Tichy said. “They saw value in what I was doing. It wasn’t about putting a logo on the website. It was about engaging people in a real way and introducing them to their passion.”
— Mary Cowx (@fervent_foodie) May 22, 2015
“We love the meals that we eat as a family and those are the meals we share,” Maria said.
Menu items are rotated every week, with six traditional options every week and six vegetarian options every week.
Most popular now: Salmon on the traditional menu (kept interesting with different types of seasoning and dressing), and, on the vegetarian menu, quinoa cakes with almond green beans.
As for dessert? There’s a cacao and peanut butter oat bar with raw honey.
Photos by Katie Toussaint and Fit You Meals.
Katie Toussaint edits for CharlotteFive and community news at the Charlotte Observer. Follow her on Twitter @katietoussaint.