The Role of Diet and Essential Nutrients during COVID-19

Hi everyone! There’s been quite the buzz lately about supplements and medications revolving around COVID-19. No one is really publicizing (on main stream media) about the holistic ways we can keep our immune systems boosted during this time. I know what you may be thinking, “Here we go… more herbs, tonics, and tinctures… yadda yadda yadda.” Well, I thought about it, but I wanted to be more practical in my approach and tell you about foods we can keep in our homes to keep ourselves healthy (or at least in better health) during this COVID-19 pandemic.

Disclaimer: I do not have the cure all be all. You cannot change your immune system overnight. Healthy habits are just that…habits! You have to take time to build and practice strengthening/maintaining your immune system on a regular basis. The tips here are a suggestion from an educational standpoint.

You may recall, back in March, that I wrote a nice little blog post mentioning “5 ways to build your immune system.” Here we are in April still running around in utter confusion and more scared than ever (anxiety through the roof) about how to stay healthy during this time. Here’s a question I have for you: What are the three things a human cannot live without?

Any guesses?!

No, it’s not your cell phone or getting your nails done… It’s Air, Water, and Food. A human being cannot survive without those three things for an extended period of time (please do not try to experiment with this concept… do your research). The body begins to break down on a cellular level and can result in death. That’s pretty serious. There is much to talk about regarding air, water, and food. Air and water will be another blog for another day (there’s much to talk about), however, I want to focus on my area of expertise which is food and its health benefits.

So, if food is important, according to a number of scientific studies, then why aren’t people more “concerned” about the foods they consume?

Wait! I know…I know… How dare I come in between you and your food? Know that I would never do that. My job here is to keep you and your families educated and informed with information that will enhance your life, especially when it comes to food. So here’s the latest and greatest in helpful information to keep your bodies’ immune system boosted while staying home in quarantine.

Boost your immunity by choosing:

  • Zinc-rich foods: Helps regulate and improve functioning of the immune system. Foods that are rich in zinc include leafy green vegetables, legumes, sprouted seeds and beans, nuts, seeds, and oats.
  • Iron-rich foods: These are essential for good metabolism, healthy blood flow, and therefore oxygenation of the body. Iron helps improve muscle and brain function. Try eating dark green leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes, lentils (we love these), artichokes, dark chocolate, sesame seeds, or chickpeas (you can even combine many of these in a well-balanced plant-based dish).
  • Eat probiotic-rich foods such as kimchi, sauerkraut, miso, or pickles. These foods help the body’s digestive system and promotes a healthy gut microbiome.
  • Sunshine (when you can) for that Vitamin D!
  • Magnesium-rich foods: These foods are essential for hundred of reactions in your body, such as repairing and regenerating cells and providing energy. Don’t let yourself become deficient! Magnesium is found in chlorophyll (found in green plants), so eat LOTS OF GREENS!!! Avocados, chard, spinach, figs, bananas, black beans, and pumpkin seeds are some of the foods you can keep in your pantry.

Staying at home and keeping your sanity during the COVID-19 pandemic is challenging for everyone. This stress and increased anxiety can cause people to abandon their healthy eating intentions and go into binge snacking. I’m here to let you know that you CAN continue to make good food choices and boost your immunity in the process. Remember that here at Plant-Based Eatz, we love each and every one of you. Here’s to your health.

Healthy Inside. Healthy Outside.

-Chef Kay

Sea Moss: Amazing Health Benefits!

Hello plant lovers! I know I’ve been MIA for a bit, but it’s all been for a great cause.  So many amazing things are being planned (I’m so EXCITED) and I promise to keep you all in “the loop.”  I wanted to write to you all today because I recently had a terrible experience with headaches.  Many of you that know me, know that I DON’T GET SICK and I don’t have headaches.  This “experience” happened shortly after two vaccinations I received to travel abroad (more details coming soon on my exciting trip).  Side note, after all of the inoculations I have had (especially while being in the Marine Corps), I still had to get two more (even though one has a life time immunity…I’ve had it THREE times already)… Money making entity at its best! (Oh, there will be another blog about this!)  I am not a fan of vaccines and I’d be happy to share in another blog, but FYI… The struggle is real when it comes to vaccinations and being plant-based.  There are so many “animal” and chemical ingredients in a number of vaccines.  For more information on vaccinations and their ingredients, venture over to the CDC website.

Where was I?  Right!  I reached out to a friend about natural cures for headaches and he mentioned Sea Moss!  (I also gave him the back story about those vaccinations too).  I’ve know about sea moss for a number of years now, but I’ve always hesitated to prepare it.  Can you imagine?  It’s a sea vegetable that if not rinsed and soaked well, can taste like the ocean and just be a bad experience overall. Well, I realized that I completely over thought the process and at the end of the day, it was a really cool experience… Preparing and using the sea moss.

So, what’s the scoop?

Seaweeds are recognized as a rich source of diverse bioactive compounds such as “sulfated polysaccharides.”  What the what?!?!  Basically these compounds have been reported to induce many health enhancing biological activities and are considered to be: antioxidant, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, and antiviral.  This sea vegetable is a power house of nutrients and minerals.

Health Benefits of Sea Moss (Irish Moss)

Immune Support

This powerful sea vegetable helps relieve and prevent symptoms of colds and flu.  Now is the time to get some sea moss for these long winter months ahead.  It’s a great source of potassium chloride which helps reduce mucous and phlegm.  Remember those “health enhancing biological activities” I mentioned before?  Sea moss acts as a natural antimicrobial and antiviral agent which helps rid the body of infections. Other benefits include (but not limited to):

  • Thyroid Support
  • Mental Health
  • Heavy Metal Detoxifying Agent
  • Skin Health
  • Digestive Support

After making Sea Moss gel today and adding it to my smoothie, I have to admit that my headache has been minimized.  I made enough to last me for the week.  I will be adding it to my smoothies, blending it with almond pulp, and whatever else I can think of.  I really want my body to go back to being happy and flushing out the effects from those vaccines (ugh).

I hope you’ll check out sea moss too! I can’t believe I’ve been missing out! Have a happy and healthy week!



Welcome to PBE

Welcome to the first post of my first official PBE blog!  We would like to use this space to share all things plant-based from recipes to ways of being eco-friendly.

Where it all started

The love for clean wholesome food has made us passionate about helping others become more healthy inside and healthy outside. I’m Kay Brown, from Columbia SC, but call Hampton VA my home.

As you may have guessed, I love all things plant-based when it comes to food and cooking.  I just started this blog, but my love for cooking started much earlier than this.  

Growing up, I was always in the kitchen with my grandparents learning how to cook.  I owe a lot to my grandparents for igniting my passion for cooking.  They cooked so many traditional Southern style dishes with fresh home-grown vegetables.  I was always allowed to help out in the kitchen. It was such a great learning experience and looking back I am grateful for what I was taught because it helped me build a positive relationship with food.

However, when I was 14 years old, I lost my grandfather to a massive heart attack and realized that lifestyle and food played a huge part in his death.  I began to look at food differently.  I wanted to be healthier and use food for good.  For years I tried I tried a number of diets and it wasn’t until 2010 that I decided to become vegan.

I was an active duty Marine, eight years in, and decided that food was the way to really boost my performance.  I was changing my career from enlisted to officer and knew that I needed to be physically ready to take on my new role as an officer of Marines.  I was a powerhouse being fueled off of greens and plant-based foods.  The feeling was incredible.  I was in the best shape of my life and for the first time (in my adult life) I felt ALIVE.  So I took it and ran with it (literally).  This decision turned out to be the best decision I’ve ever made.

I started a fitness company in 2014 with an emphasis on nutrition. I began to really experiment with food and my passion grew! After a few months of creating meals and training clients, I began to upload my food and fitnesspictures on Instagram. I started growing followers and I was getting feedback for workouts, recipes, and deliveries. Business was great!

I transitioned out of the Marine Corps in 2015.  Business was growing in fitness, but the food piece took a serious pivot.  My clients were more interested in meal preparation plans and doing in-home cooking lessons.  I hadn’t  thought about culinary training until my demand for food was high.  I attended the Rouxbe Culinary program and received my certificate in professional plant-based cooking. Now, it was a matter of capturing my food and delivering the mouth watering flavors to my clients.

In 2017, the company became Plant-Based Eatz™.  Ever since I uploaded the first food picture, I’ve been motivated to create more healthy, nutritious, and delicious dishes! That’s what brings me to this blog.  I want to share recipes and dishes with all of you.  The call-to-action from you all has been huge!  I couldn’t be more thankful for all of the love and support.

I am looking forward to updating and capturing food moments with you on this journey.  Thanks for reading!

Kay 🍉