What We’re All About

The Power Up program identifies quality products through clean and transparent labeling. These products will provide energy supportive nutrients essential to the body.

Our Mission

To engage and simply educate our customers on the importance of using quality food as fuel.

danille

Meet Danielle!

Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N.), Natural Chef. R.M.T.

Danielle has grown up in the grocery business and is very passionate about healthy lifestyle choices and the importance of reading food labels. She’s been practicing in the health and wellness industry since 2006 and in 4 years she graduated from the Canadian College of Massage and Hydrotherapy, Canadian School of Natural Nutrition, and Bauman College in Berkley California. Danielle co-founded a company called 4 the Luv of Food, which developed a formula that has helped over 200 people gain control of their blood sugar levels. Using this simple formula she lost 23 lbs. in 3 years and hasn’t looked back. She developed a line of blood sugar friendly snacks called Danielle’s Naturals and believes healthy eating should NEVER compromise flavour. Danielle finds joy in educating and motivating others to make more mindful food choices.


In-Store Sampling Schedule

April 22nd
11:00am-4:00pm

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Vince’s Own Hummus

April 29th

newmarket

May 13th
11:00am – 4:00pm

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Power Up Your Food

In Season Foods

We live in a country that has a limited growing season but in those 160 days of the year we yield some of the most delicious fruits and vegetables. We are also fortunate enough to have some impressive greenhouse crops year round.
When produce comes to us from other countries they are picked early to ensure ripeness upon arrival, which deprives the fruit or vegetable of optimal high-energy nutrients. Local produce is picked ripe, with minimal travel time allowing for peak nutrition.

We want to encourage you to eat with the seasons. Local, seasonal, homegrown food sustained our ancestors in a healthy manner providing all the energy they needed for their day. There were no strawberries in the winter, and while we are fortunate to have them available to us, are they going to give us the most nutrients? Not likely. Past generations were not influenced by the nutritional advice that promoted foods inaccessible to them. They kept things simple and so should we.

It’s our job at Vince’s to identify Ontario’s Goodness as well as in-season produce year round to make sure you’re getting nutrition at its finest.



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Local Foods

We are a community-based store that loves to support local. Beyond our produce department we have many suppliers that offer products using locally sourced ingredients. Buying local foods:

  • Supports our economy through local farmers and other producers.
  • Encourages sustainable agriculture.
  • Are more nutritious and taste better.

Whether it’s oats, barley, maple syrup, or honey we take pride in bringing awareness to products that support the local movement.



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Blood Sugar Friendly Foods

One of the main contributors to today’s health issues is excess sugar, which comes in the form of carbohydrates. All foods fall into one of, or a combination of three main nutrients – carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. The body can breakdown and use all three, but the only one it can readily store are the carbohydrates.

Carbohydrates include sugars and starches as well as indigestible fibre which helps to slow down the rate at which the sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream. Once consumed, all carbohydrates turn into glucose (sugar) which the body may use for energy or store as glycogen in the liver and muscles.

When we over consume carbohydrates and our body has to continuously store unused glucose, the glycogen tanks get full causing glucose to pool in the bloodstream. This increases the body’s production of insulin. Over time the body can develop a resistance to insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas that shuttles glucose to the cells for use or storage. With excess glucose floating around the bloodstream the liver sends it to the fat cells and can also make it into LDL cholesterol, which is when diabetes and other diseases can manifest.

Diet plays a huge role in controlling insulin and blood sugar levels. Fats and proteins slow down the rate in which sugar is absorbed so they are good additions to carb heavy meals allowing the body to use the carbs for energy leaving nothing left to store.

Now that we’ve broken down the basics there’s a general rule that we stay true to, never eat “lonely” carbs.

We use a simple formula created by 4 the Luv of Food to identify the blood sugar friendliness of a product:

Carbohydrates (–) Fiber (–) Fat (–) Protein should = 0 or less than 0

We will be using the “Balance Factor” (BF) scale to clearly identify a products impact on our blood sugar. If a product has a number of 0 or < 0 then it has the green light.

If the product has a positive number then caution (yellow) is advised and pairing is recommended. For example: pairing crackers with cheese, apple and peanut butter, berries and Greek yogurt.



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Clean and Transparent Foods

What defines a clean label? Simplicity. Products made with minimal and pronounceable ingredients. Foods that are clean will provide energy, potential vitamins and minerals, and result in little to no waste. Clean foods should leave you feeling energized, healthy and satisfied. When you fuel yourself with quality foods your body is less likely to crave foods that aren’t beneficial.

Picture yourself looking through a clear food package and being able to see every single ingredient listed. Does that product look as appealing? Transparency is feeling comfortable looking at every ingredient and still wanting to take it home. When you look at a conventional food label there are likely several ingredients you may not understand. Some of them are fancy words for harmless add-ins and some of them are quite harmful especially when consumed on the regular. We understand that it’s nearly impossible to avoid every processed food but we are going to give you a clear picture on what to look for and what to avoid.

Here’s a list of food additives that sound scary but aren’t:

Guar Gum and Xanthum Gum – both vegetable derived and aid as a thickening agent especially in gluten-free goods.

Lethicin aka soy lethicin – Used as a stabilizer in bread and prevents salad dressings from separating. Derived from corn so best to look for organic and non-gmo products.

Ascorbyl palmitate – an antioxidant made from Vitamin C and palmitic acid, a natural compound derived from fat. It prevents spoilage in food and your body will use the vitamin C and breakdown the rest.

Absorbic Acid – another term for Vitamin C. It used to maintain the colour, flavour, and texture of foods.

Lactic Acid – made from fermented corn, beet, or cane sugar. Often found in probiotic rich foods.

 

If you see the following “toxic” ingredients on a label it’s best to avoid if you value your health:

Synthetic Trans Fats (partially hydrogenated vegetable oils)

High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)

Artificial Sweeteners

Sodium Benzoate and Potassium Benzoate

Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA and BHT)

Artificial Flavours

Artificial Colours (Yellow 5, Red #40 and Blue #2)

Yeast Extract (another form of MSG)



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Minimally Processed, Whole Foods

Fruits, vegetables, legumes, poultry, and meat are examples of whole foods. Rolled oats, and nut butters are examples of whole foods that have been minimally processed. While typically the most nutritious foods are on the perimeter of the grocery store the inner aisles have some hidden gems that are whole food based and we’re going to tell you all about them. 



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Convenient and Realistic Foods

Convenience foods have a bit of a bad reputation. Often they are associated with highly processed, pop-in-the-microwave, and serve type meals. This can be true, but as our lives become faster paced and the emphasis on health increases, so have our options. Retailers have adapted to meet the needs of their customers and lots of fresh and healthy options are available daily in stores. Vince’s puts time and thought into a variety of prepared foods made onsite. We are also going to put together some health conscious specific meals for an easy grab and go without the compromise… stay tuned! We will also be highlighting products on our shelves that are multi-purpose. If we recommend coconut flour we will be sure to include preparation suggestions and recipes at our in store demos. 



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Weekly Blog
fresh seasonal produce

April 24, 2017

Storing Fresh Seasonal Produce

fresh seasonal produceI’m so excited that soon we are going to have lots of local fruits and vegetables available. The beauty of eating locally and seasonally is that our fruits and vegetables are not harvested early and left to ripen in transit. They get optimal growing time which means their nutrients are plentiful. You can most definitely taste the local difference. I can’t wait to stock my fridge in the coming months!

Does It Really Matter Where You Store Your Fresh Produce?

Have you wondered if you’re storing fruits and vegetables optimally once you get them home? I recently bought a new fridge. Before, I never paid much attention to those humidity gauges you see on the drawers. I figured there must be good reason for them. It turns out they are quite helpful in retaining the freshness of your produce.

After some research, a cool HGTV video, and time experimenting in the kitchen I’d like to share my findings with you.

Where Should They Go?

  1. Cucumbers, asparagus, tomatoes, and onions are best kept on the counter:
  • Treat asparagus like a flower, chop the ends and store in a glass of shallow water.
  • Tomatoes like room to breathe so don’t crowd them.
  • Whole onions on the counter, cut onions go in the fridge.
  • Onions make potatoes sprout so store them separately.
  1. Potatoes and garlic like it dark so place in a brown paper bag or store in a dark cupboard.
  2. Basil is best kept on the counter in a glass of shallow water with a clear plastic bag over top to maintain a warm temperature.
  3. Parsley and cilantro will keep for 5 days stored in water with a clear plastic bag over top in the fridge.
  4. Vegetables like it humid so use the humidity control on the drawers of your fridge.
  5. Fruits like it dry so turn down the humidity on the fruit drawer.

Why Is It a Good Idea to Store Fresh Produce Properly?

By storing our fresh produce in the proper places, we can extend not only its shelf life, but also maximize the amount of nutrients in the food when we consume it.  We’re getting the best bang for our buck, eliminating food waste, and eating healthier food.  It’s a good idea all around!

Have any storage tips you’d like to share?

Our Power Up Mission is simply to educate our customers on the importance of using quality food as fuel.  For all your Power Up news make sure you check out Vince’s FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.  Make sure you follow @VincesMarket and #powerupwithvinces, sign up for our Power Up Newsletter and keep an eye out for nutrition tips and tricks from me, our in-house nutrition expert!

To our health & wellbeing,

Danielle
In-House Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N.),
Natural Chef., R.M.T.

 

spring clean kitchen

April 16, 2017

Tips for Spring Cleaning Your Kitchen

17spring cleaning kitchen tipsWe’re just about a month into spring with the hustle bustle of Easter is behind us. The weather is warming up and if you haven’t already done so now is a good time to consider a spring cleaning.  A great place to start is with your kitchen!

Spring cleaning is a time-honored tradition of renewal, a time to clear the clutter and begin fresh. It sounds so good in theory, but when strapped for time, spring cleaning is hard to get started. As overwhelming as it seems, if you start with something specific like the kitchen pantry you will feel so accomplished and this will set the tone for any other areas that may need a refresh.

Start with Something Specific, Like the Pantry

Most recently I helped a friend organize her kitchen. She had several years’ worth of packaged and canned goods in her pantry, some had expired and some were doubles of untouched products she had forgotten about. The clutter in her pantry was limiting her space for new healthful products and was causing her to overspend on items she already had but wasn’t aware of.

We got rid of the stuff that she could no longer use and completely simplified her kitchen, which is the key to success. Since the clean out she’s felt more motivated to cook and get excited about food again. You’d be surprised how “heavy” a crowded space can make you feel and you may not even be aware of it. It’s not until you take the time to “lighten” the load that you realize how much it was weighing you down.

At this time of year, I always like to start with the pantry as our diet changes with the seasons. We are entering into the season of plenty with lots of fresh fruits and veggies available, which means taking up more refrigerator space and less in the cupboards.

Here are a few ways you can simplify your kitchen:

Fresh Start:

Take everything out of your pantry and give the cupboards a good wipe down. Dust and food particles encourage bacteria.

Double Trouble:

Check expiration dates and toss old food. Donate doubles of items you won’t be using to the local food bank.

Labeling:

Invest in clear food-grade canisters for bulk food items and dry goods like grains, pasta, beans, and cereals. Label them accordingly and have organized zones. Baking items in one section, snacks in another etc. Don’t forget to date them to maintain freshness.

Prevent Rancidity:

Store flours, nuts, and seeds in glass jars in the freezer to prevent rancidity.

Within Arms’ Reach:

Take into consideration what you use and how often. Keep items that you use regularly in easy reach and push less common things to the back.

Fresh is Best:

Most of your nutrients are found in the refrigerator so stock up on lots of fruits and veggies.

Keep an Inventory

Have a notepad on hand so that you can keep proper inventory on what you have and limit aimless shopping trips.

Knowing what’s in your cupboards makes grocery shopping more efficient and economical.

Our Power Up Mission is simply to educate our customers on the importance of using quality food as fuel.  For all your Power Up news make sure you check out Vince’s FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.  Make sure you follow @VincesMarket and #powerupwithvinces, sign up for our Power Up Newsletter and keep an eye out for nutrition tips and tricks from me, our in-house nutrition expert!

Happy spring cleaning!

Danielle
In-House Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N.),
Natural Chef., R.M.T.

easter brunch casserole

April 10, 2017

Easter Brunch Egg Casserole Recipe

easter brunch casseroleEaster brunch has become a popular Easter Sunday tradition. There is so much versatility in brunch. The best of both worlds, breakfast and lunch that is, come together for a delicious meal. Brunch can be as light or extravagant as you like, but what I love most is that it almost always includes an egg dish. Everything from frittatas to quiches to big piles of scrambled eggs with fresh herbs.

Benefits of Brunch

When you include good protein sources at your holiday meal you leave room for the chocolate themed treats that usually follow. A good dose of protein and good fats will ensure you don’t go into a sugar coma when dessert time comes around. Another perk to having a brunch gathering is that a larger mid-day meal is much easier on the digestive system than a big dinner.

Easy Make-Ahead Easter Brunch Recipe

One of my favourite ways to enjoy eggs at a holiday meal is in a bake or casserole. You can really add whatever fixings you like and it’s a great way to use up the last bit of vegetables that may be taking up space in your fridge. This recipe is a basic guideline and can really be tailored any way you like. Swap the cheddar for a blue cheese, use bacon instead of ham, add broccoli or cauliflower… get creative with it!

Another bonus is that it can be made the night before so you can just pop it into the oven the morning of and enjoy some family time. Happy Easter everyone!

Easter Brunch Egg Casserole

Serves 12

  • 3 cups sharp cheddar, grated
  • 3 cups mozzarella cheese, grated
  • 1/2 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup green onion, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 2 cups cooked ham or sausage, cubed
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

What To Do

  1. In a 9 x 13 ungreased baking dish spread 1/2 of the cheddar and mozzarella over the bottom to cover.
  2. Sauté mushrooms, red pepper and green onion in butter for about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in the cooked ham.
  3. Allow to cool and then spread mixture over the cheese layer.
  4. Top with remaining cheddar and mozzarella.
  5. Beat the eggs in a medium sized bowl gradually adding in the milk and flour. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Slowly pour the egg mixture over top.
  7. Bake immediately OR cover and refrigerate overnight. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and basil before baking.
  8. Preheat oven to 350 and bake for 35 to 40 minutes.
  9. Allow to stand for 5 minutes and serve.

What are your favourite ways to enjoy or indulge in Easter brunch?

Our Power Up Mission is simply to educate our customers on the importance of using quality food as fuel.  For all your Power Up news make sure you check out Vince’s FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.  Make sure you follow @VincesMarket and #powerupwithvinces, sign up for our Power Up Newsletter and keep an eye out for nutrition tips and tricks from me, our in-house nutrition expert!

To our health & wellbeing,

Danielle
In-House Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N.),
Natural Chef., R.M.T.

 

Zucchini Peanut Noodles

April 3, 2017

Zucchini Peanut Noodles: Power Up Approved Recipe

Zucchini Peanut NoodlesSpring has always been about cleaning things up for me. From cleaning out the closet and tidying up around the house, to cleaning up my diet. I like to start adding more fresh and light foods to my diet, like salads and water based vegetables, as opposed to the warm and grounding foods we often crave in the cooler months.

Spiraling Into Delicious Clean Eating

You may have noticed that we have started carrying fresh Zucchini Noodles at our Uxbridge location. What started as a trial has completely taken off so we look forward to introducing spiralized noodles to all of our locations.

The spiralized trend has brought a new element to the low carb movement. Typically, anything labelled “low carb” is often filled with unpronounceable ingredients that you don’t want to be ingesting.  However, this type of low carb alternative I am totally on board with!

Want Your Own Spiralizer?

Head to Walmart. You can get a nice spiralizer for under $40.00 and you can go noodle crazy

I love that you can really get creative with different kinds of vegetables and toppings. The raw noodles can be heated and topped with pasta sauce or you can enjoy them raw with a salad dressing. I am really into Asian themed dressings lately and vegetable noodles compliment that flavor so nicely.

Zucchini Peanut Noodles

  • Vince’s Own Zucchini Noodles or 2 medium zucchini, spiralized  (about 3 cups noodles)
  • 1 medium carrot, spiralized or thinly sliced (about 2 cups carrot noodles)
  • 1/2 cup very thinly sliced red onion (about ½ of a small red onion)
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
  • 2 Tbsp peanuts or cashews, roughly chopped

For the Dressing:

  • 3 heaping Tbsp smooth peanut butter
  • 1 small garlic clove, grated
  • Juice from half a lime
  • 3 tsp rice vinegar
  • ½ Tbsp Sriracha
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • ½ tsp honey
  • 1 Tbsp water or more until dressing reaches desired consistency

What To Do:

Start by prepping all the vegetables. Spiralize the zucchinis and carrot using the blade that makes spaghetti-sized strands. Pat the zucchini noodles dry with paper towels to absorb any excess moisture. Thinly slice the onions.

** If you don’t have a spiralizer you can either shave your zucchinis and carrot with a vegetable peeler or slice them into matchsticks with a chef’s knife. **

In a large mixing bowl, whisk all the ingredients for the dressing.

Add the vegetables and cilantro to the bowl with the dressing and toss to coat. Portion into serving bowls and garnish with chopped cashews or peanuts and lime wedges.

** If you’re preparing the salad in advance, wait to add the vegetables to the dressing until just before serving otherwise the noodles can become soggy.

What’s your favourite way to enjoy spiralized veggies?

Our Power Up Mission is simply to educate our customers on the importance of using quality food as fuel.  For all your Power Up news make sure you check out Vince’s FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.  Make sure you follow @VincesMarket and #powerupwithvinces, sign up for our Power Up Newsletter and keep an eye out for nutrition tips and tricks from me, our in-house nutrition expert!

To our health & wellbeing,

Danielle
In-House Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N.),
Natural Chef., R.M.T.

chicken salad recipe

March 27, 2017

Large Batch Meal Prep Chicken Salad Recipe

chicken salad recipeIn last week’s Power Up blog we looked at easy prep meals for when you’re pressed for time with limited options. While a can of tuna or canned beans are good options in a pinch, you don’t want to get in the habit of opting for canned convenience too often.

One of the easiest ways to prevent food limited situations is to prep large batches in advance. I recently heard a saying that couldn’t be closer to the truth:

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”Benjamin Franklin

As harsh as this sounds it really is true. If you want to have healthy living goals, a game plan is essential for success. Large batch prep are great and easiest to accommodate for meal prepping. You don’t need to start from scratch daily and you’re never stuck without an option.

Fresh Staples to Keep in the Fridge

Here’s a list of food items that keep well in the fridge and can turn into beautiful meals with some creativity:

  • Grains – rice, quinoa, barley
  • Proteins – chicken, pork tenderloin, ground beef
  • Green vegetables – lightly steamed vegetables are great for reheating
  • Soups and chili
  • Washed lettuce – Pre-wash your lettuce, dry well and keep in a stainless steel bowl in the fridge.

Large Batch Meal Prepping: Chicken Salad

Use up leftover chicken by turning it into a wonderful lunch option. Prepare it in advance and be ready anytime during the week. As a bonus, the flavours get better the longer it sits. You can omit the nuts and send it to school with the kids. Also it makes for an easy grab & go when time is limited throughout the week. Try adding it to a wrap or place on a bed of spinach. Whichever way you choose this recipe is a keeper.

Simple Chicken Salad

  • 4 cups chicken meat, cubed or shredded
  • 1 cup mayonnaise OR plain yogurt
  • 1 tbsp Dijon or Old Style Mustard
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 2 green onions chopped fine
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

What to do:

  1. Combine all ingredients together to coat the chicken well.
  2. Adjust seasoning and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.

Stay tuned for more big batch recipes. What are some of your favourite dishes to prepare in large batches?

Our Power Up Mission is simply to educate our customers on the importance of using quality food as fuel.  For all your Power Up news make sure you check out Vince’s FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.  Make sure you follow @VincesMarket and #powerupwithvinces, sign up for our Power Up Newsletter and keep an eye out for nutrition tips and tricks from me, our in-house nutrition expert!

To our health & wellbeing,

Danielle
In-House Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N.),
Natural Chef., R.M.T.


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Identifying Products In Store
PowerUp_website_AUG16_Sliced_Shelf Talker

Looks for our PowerUp tags throughout the store to find products that are PowerUp approved. Watch out for special “Food for Thought” tags on these shelf talkers for relevant and interesting information about the products.

Be sure to check out our demo schedule for opportunities to try new products and chat food with Danielle, our in house Nutritionist.

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for foodie insights and delicious recipe ideas.