January is traditionally the time when people look to new life changes. If one of your resolutions is to be a little healthier or make more conscious choices, or even dip your toe into vegan life, then Healthy Route in Leicester is here to help.
The city centre shop is open for your essentials during lockdown, with delivery options also available. Whether you’re on a Veganuary journey or looking for new ways to boost your health, the store is packed with food and natural health options.
We caught up with owner, Gary, for this week’s BID Spotlight feature.
Tell us a little about Healthy Route for anyone who hasn’t visited before?
With a heritage of over 50 years in Leicester, Healthy Route is an independent natural health and food store, based in the very heart of Leicester. Folk are more than welcome to come into the store and browser our shelves to their heart’s content, however, we pride ourselves on navigating you to reach you goal through the products we sell! This means we are approachable and ask lots of questions of you before offering advice or recommending supplements or foods.
Many people will be in the middle of their Veganuary food plan, how can Healthy Route help them stay on track?
The growth of veganism and in particular, Veganuary has been massive over the last few years. Trying vegan life is about much more than just the foods we eat. It’s a lifestyle choice that can improve overall individual health and improve the environment too. Its about sustainable land management, protecting the environment and questioning what our future will be like. The team at Healthy Route here in Leicester are happy to help those on a journey to veganism as well as those looking to improve their health through food choices and supplements, as well as natural, chemical -free beauty products.
What are some of your favourite items that you have in store?
As an independent store, we are not forced to sell any products, we choose to put products on our shelves, and in many cases will try products before you see them in our shop, on Silver Street! A good example of this is the Veg An Love range of pies! Made locally, in Leicester, these vegan diners are filling for even the heartiest of appetites. Other store favourites are Echinaforce from Swiss herbal company, A Vogel. Ideal for help in fighting infections, whether viral, bacterial or fungal. We also pride ourselves of the range of Vitamin D products in store. As most know, over 75% of the UK population need to supplement with Vitamin D, particularly during the winter months. We offer high quality Vitamin D3 in tablet and capsule form, in drops and sprays for all age groups from children upwards. We also bring in some super high strength options from the US, for those that need something stronger (for a short term). Other great products are Hope’s cream, for Eczema and psoriasis suffers, and Jasons Biotin Shampoo and conditioner to help with improving poor hair condition, and of course Weleda’s Skin Food. I personally use Skin Food in the winter to repair the skin, damaged by cold weather and also in the summer are an “after-sun and moisturizer.
What is it about Healthy Route that sets you apart from other similar retailers?
Visiting Healthy Route is about knowing you are buying a product that will work for you and help you achieve your goal We will ask you questions…. we are not being nosy! We want to make sure you get the best advice and choices of products we can give. We have been doing that over 50 years and we want to be able to say, we have been doing that for over a 100 years some day!
Which items are the most popular that you sell?
Porridge oats, and Strong Canadian bread making flour have been popular throughout the Covid pandemic. We have a huge range of over 200 fruit and herbal teas. As mentioned earlier, Echinaforce and all Vitamin D products sell well, as do our UK-sourced CBD products.
People can also shop online via LoyalFree Marketplace, how does this work for customers?
Since last summer we have been listing a range of mainly supplements on the Marketplace site. It’s a simple and straightforward way to order products from us. Search LoyalFree Marketplace on the web. Click on Leicester and then on the Healthy Route page! Search our range of products, select what you require and couple of days later your parcel will arrive from us. We will not bombard you with emails, its a quick option to a store visit.
Once Veganuary is over what are some of the benefits to people for continuing on this path?
We see those that have done Veganuary, in the past, continue to see health improvements and question the sustainability of the products they eat. The health gains of a vegan or vegetarian life style are there for all to see. Even those that lead a Flexitarian lifestyle will see improvements, in both the long and short term.
How can people find out more, shop online or visit you during lockdown?
As a “food” store, we have been open 6 days a week since last March. Although our daily opening hours have reduced to 9.30 am to 3.00pm, we would love to see you in the store but if (for whatever the reason) you cant make it into the centre of Leicester you can order a huge range of supplements via the LoyalFree Marketplace website. You can also email orders through to us at [email protected]. Another option is to put our store phone number (0116-2539097) into your mobile phone, and if you have WhatsApp you can send us a secure Whatsapp message.
Our BID Spotlight features are brought to you in collaboration with BID Leicester.