FAQ: CORE Meals
Frequently Asked Questions: CORE Meals
Uhhh, what's a CORE Meal?
CORE Meals are FRESH portable food. They're as convenient as packaged products, but they're not candy, they're food. Each pack is 4 hours of stable, balanced energy. Grab instead of breakfast when you're in a rush, or after a workout for a solid recovery.
What makes you think this food's healthy?
Here's the short answer:
- FRESH. Our food goes bad quickly. It doesn't sit on the shelf forever.
- FOOD. We use 5-7 raw organic, locally grown ingredients. We leave out the candy.
- NOT FOR PROFIT. We focus on quality, and leave the money out of it.
Here's the long answer. (Worth the read.)
How do I store my CORE Meals?
CORE Meals are FRESH food. The colder you store them, the longer they last. We recommend storing them in the freezer (for up to 6 months). They thaw in less than 10 minutes. You can also store them in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. At room temperature they will last up to a week. In the desert, they don't last much more than a day but you can extend that by tucking the Meals in the bottom of your pack or in contact with your water bottle.
How do I know if my CORE Meal is still good?
CORE Meals are food. Treat them like food. If you accidentally leave them out for a while, sniff and look for mold before you consume them. If something tastes funny, don't continue eating! E-mail email@example.com and we'll happily ship you out a new one.
Am I a Warrior?
Warrior Meal is fortified with the only Organic Whey Protein. This is important because the protein is tested to make sure that every gram is actually soluble with full amino acid ratios. Warrior Meals deliver 18 grams of hearty non-denatured muscle building Organic protein to maximize performance. An optimal proportion of complex carbohydrates and healthy essential fats time releases the protein for optimal recovery. We recommend Warrior for outdoor fun, hard exercise, and high intensity activities.
Am I a Defender?
Defender Meal is focused on maximizing health and longevity. This recipe follows a strict vegan diet, which has been proven to be the most powerful weapon to Defend against diseases of affluence (heart disease, cancers, etc.)--the diseases that kill the majority of Americans. Defender Meals utilize our balanced recipe of complex carbohydrates and healthy essential fats fortified with Organic Flax and nuts for 12 grams of Organic Vegan protein. We recommend Defender for car rides, plane trips, and everyday pursuits.
Where can I learn more about your nutrition philosophy?
We're proud of the hard work we put into developing CORE Meals and we're excited that you want to read more. Please read our Philosophy, a statement from our founder.
Why is Sweetener-Free so important?
Over-consumption of sugar is at the heart of the obesity epidemic and is a leading cause for nutrition-related health problems. In our own research we observe sugar playing a large role in taxing metabolic changes that may lead to quicker aging of body systems. Both safe and unsafe sugars are used in nearly every product in grocery stores in far too high proportions. Some even use carcinogenic artificial sweeteners. We use Organic Raisins to balance the savory characteristics of our food.
Are CORE Meals safe for Diabetics?
CORE Meals range from 6-17 grams of sugar, and that's all from raw fruit. Respective to total food weight this is 75-95% less sugar content than most other bars. CORE Meals have a balanced proportion of complex carbohydrates and healthy fats which slows down your body's processing of our food over 3-4 hours. That means that the minimal amount of sugar content is slowly absorbed into the body to avoid taxing insulin fluxes. Learn More.
Can I use CORE Meals for weight loss?
Some people do. Most American meals average 600 calories. CORE Meals are 400 calories so you consume less calories and feel fully sustained. You’ll also avoid the sugars, flours, and oils, and other unpleasant ingredients often present in those meals. Our weight-conscious customers often use CORE Meals to replace breakfast, a very important meal to jump start your metabolism that should be eaten early and with lots of water. Many aggressive customers eat CORE Meals instead of dinner, to limit unused calories and provide slow release protein into sleep. Defender is recommended if possible for its higher fiber content, though some customers prefer Warrior because the energy lasts them longer and prevents snacking.
However, you should know that you may see even better results from replacing as much of your current food as you can with fresh raw vegetables and fruits. People who are looking to lose weight are frequently taken advantage of in health marketing. Beware of what you are told (even from us). We encourage you to read our research section slowly and make your own decisions.
Are CORE Meals safe for people with autism?
Like so many illnesses, improving nutrition and eating practices has an immense ability to heal. We recommend speaking to a professional to learn more. Generally people with autism are recommended to focus on improving digestion (as a result of gut damage from antibiotics), balance blood sugar, increase healthy fat consumption, increase vitamin rich foods, and avoid allergens. CORE Meals are built to address all of these needs.
Are CORE Meals 100% Organic?
Yes. Every ingredient in CORE Meals and our kitchen are USDA Certified Organic by CCOF.
Even your Whey Protein is Certified Organic?
Yes. Our Warrior Meals are the first protein bars to use Certified Organic Whey. Our friend Tera carefully batch-processes hormone-free, antibiotic-free, free range, grass-fed raw whey from small Wisconsin family farms and then tests to make sure the protein can actually be synthesized by your body. She uses a cool temperature ultra filtration process that preserves the protein structures and then dries the protein all in her LEED Certified green facility. We source 80% Protein Concentrate from her because it is significantly less processed and preserves more of the valuable elements of the protein than the 90% Protein Isolate found in most other products. Read more about our research on whey protein or visit Tera's Whey. (See inset for amino acid profile)
Are CORE Meals Gluten-Free?
Yes! All of our ingredients are gluten-free. We buy GFCO certified Gluten-Free oats and we test all of our batches using EZ-Gluten strips. They are sensitive enough to detect levels of gluten as low as 10 parts per million (ppm)and are approved by ELISA Laboratory.
Wait! I thought Oats have Gluten?!
Not naturally. Gluten is the protein found in only wheat family grains. Oats are in the Avena family and instead contain the protein avenin. That being said, cereal grains are typically cross milled and as a result become cross-contaminated. We source and test every batch of our oats to make sure they are Gluten-Free!
Are CORE Meals Raw?
Yes. All of our ingredients are sourced raw from best farmers we know of. Because we source our ingredients fresh, all we have to do is mix them together. Learn more about each ingredient!
Wait, your Oats and Whey are Raw?
We do not cook anything. We just take the raw ingredients and mix them together. We source a more ancient varietal of oat called "Naked Oats" (Avena nuda) which grow huskless naturally and don't have to be steamed. We test them for sproutability before they are rolled. We use raw whey from Tera's Whey, see above! Learn more about each ingredient!
I thought Oats were a low quality food?
There are 6 tiers of oat quality. We buy the highest, tier six. Here's what that looks like:
- Standard conventional oats combined from many farmers ($.39/lb)
- Organic Oats combined from many farmers ($.49/lb)
- Gluten Free (GF) Oats that are self certified by the supplier ($.85/lb)
- Conventional 3rd party-certified GF oats ($1/lb)
- 3rd party certified GF & Organic Oats ($1.26/lb)
- 3rd party certified GF, Organic & Raw Oats ($1.80/lb) (WE BUY THESE)
Do you believe in 100% Raw diet?
While utilizing raw ingredients is an important part of our recipe, we do not believe that a 100% raw lifestyle is the optimal human diet. Our stomachs are 1/3 smaller than our all-raw chimpanzee ancestors' and our dental formula is the same—we are built to consume some of our food in a calorically denser, cooked form. Learn more.
Are your Spices whole and raw?
Yes. We believe in uncompromising nutrition and this does not stop at our spices. We grind raw, whole plants for spices rather than using sugar-infused, alcohol-extracted, or artificially created flavoring found in many other products. We don't list them because we can't patent our recipes, but let's be honest, they're pretty easy to figure out.
Do you soak your ingredients?
Yes. We soak out nuts, seeds, and grains for better digestibility!
Why don't you use plant protein powders and superfoods?
Simply put, powders of any kind have no where near the nutrient solubility and phytonutrient content of their whole food equivalents. We strive to use the whole foods instead. This goes for spirulina, powdered vegetables, maca, etc. The freshness of locally grown fruits and vegetables will dwarf any of the potency of exotic superfoods simply in the differences in nutrient degradation over time. Fresh fruits and vegetables are the healthiest foods on earth. That is undisputed. Powdered and syrup versions of those don't have the same benefits. We make the exception with whey protein (see discussion above) because it is the highest biologically available protein empirically tested to improve muscular recovery and performance in athletes. Animal proteins have such higher levels of amino acids than plants that they weather nutrient degradation a little better.
Are you Paleo-Diet compatible?
The major Paleo tenet is eating fresh unprocessed foods. We couldn't agree more and our food reflects that. We disagree, however, on the proportions of meat recommended (because humans have blunt, not sharp canines) and focus on high plant consumption instead. We also utilize grains in our recipes in their whole state as humans have been consuming them for 30,000 years or so, and our anatomy has responded accordingly. Grains are often targeted mistakenly in diets when, in fact, flours are what turn grains from healthy high fiber foods to simple sugars.
How do you deal with packaging waste?
Packaging films made of recycled plastic are not currently being produced. Since bar wrappers utilize a fusion of metalized inner layers and plastic outer layers, they cannot be effectively recycled yet either. We are ecstatic to see home compostable packaging being produced, but unfortunately CORE Meals are too fresh for this type of film to adequately protect our food from oxygen and moisture. If any one of these materials becomes an option in the future, we commit to sourcing it. In the meantime we're collecting our used wrappers and reusing them for marketing materials and turning them into other consumer goods. Please recycle a shipping box and send them to: CORE Foods 2630 Dana St #2 Berkeley CA 94704.
What about your carton waste?
Our display cartons are made of 100% recycled paperboard!
Are you Local?
Yes. We team up with the most local, outstanding raw ingredient producers and businesses who are all at the forefront of quality and sustainability in their industry. The closer and more sustainable, the better. We also strive to support, women- and minority-owned businesses wherever we can.
When was my CORE Meal made?
We date stamp our food at one month assuming that you're storing them refrigerated. At the moment, our food is selling quickly enough that sometimes that date gets forgotten. We've included a Julian date from the date we made the batch just in case. The first two digits are the year and the last three digits are the day of the year. If the number is 10107, that means we made them in 2010 on the 107th day: or May 1st, 2010. Our storage before distribution is cold enough to extend the shelf life quite a bit.
What if I don't like it?
No worries. We know not everyone's taste is the same. If you are EVER dissatisfied with our food for ANY reason, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for a FULL REFUND.
You didn't answer my question! How can I add to this list?
We are serious about our transparency. Please e-mail email@example.com and we'll post an answer as soon as we can.