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Friday, July 12, 2024

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#ACCESS901: Free your mind and Just Eat!

A chance encounter led me to some of the best tasting vegan food I have had in years.

I am standing outside Pilates gossiping with my friend Victoria when along comes three gentlemen, striking up a conversation (respectfully).

After laughing and joking for a bit, we discover that one of these brothas has a recently launched food pop up.

A native Memphian, Khomorai has been travelling to and from in Ghana for the past seven years, living there for two years during that period.

He recently returned to the states for what turned out to be an extended period, made even longer given the current pandemic situation.

Just Eat is an extension of his primary holistic health and wellness brand, Absolute Body Fitness.

He began his work as a lifestyle coach, promoting mindful eating and living. He would work out with clients then go grocery shopping with them and teach them to prepare meals.

Khomorai’s journey started a little over 10 years ago. He was morbidly obese, cresting 400 pounds. He was pre-hypertensive, pre-diabetic, had acid reflux and sleep apnea.

He wasn’t even 30 at the time. One day, he was having a stroke. The hospital kept him for two days, running the obligatory stress tests and so on.

“They basically were like, ‘you’re just big,’” he said said. “My epiphany came shortly after that.”

He always had struggled with weight. Since he was very athletic in school, playing just about every sport, it was a non-issue. However, there’s a difference between a hobby or extracurricular activity and a lifestyle. Once he became less active, the weight started creeping up.

He speaks of another moment that served as a catalyst.

“I was purchasing a pair of slacks for a job I was working on. I went to buy those slacks and they were a size 54! I almost cried at the register. It showed me actually how big I had actually gotten. I needed to get control of this. I started making mindful decisions, researching a lot of things.”

He researched food and recommended daily allowances, initially cutting out red meat. Then he cut sugars to a bare minimum before he landed solidly on the vegan lifestyle path.

From the M to the A (Atlanta AND Accra), Khomorai wants to us know better and do better.

The Just Eat vegan pop up starts here in Memphis, but he will be taking it down the road and to the Continent (whenever we can travel again!).

He’s adapting his offerings and brand regionally. In Memphis, it’s Just Eat Mane. It’s Just Eat Shawty in Atlanta. In Accra, it’s Just Eat Chale.

Just Eat is as simple as it sounds per Khomormai.

“Breaking it down to its simplest component. In essence, we should eat the food that’s good for us without overthinking it and without sacrificing taste and flavor.

“Don’t focus on what it is and where it comes from. The food we eat on a regular basis, we don’t question that. We have to condition ourselves to think differently. Healing not killing.”

A new tagline is born. (Note: In Memphinese, healing not killing rhymes!)

With the Just Eat pop ups, Khomorai isn’t targeting people who are already vegans or vegan adjacent. His focus is on people who are new to the holistic journey and/or considering the vegan lifestyle or just healthier options.

Biscuits with vegan gravy is a Just East specialty. (Photo: Demarcus Bowser)

When asked about his specialties, he says he loves to make sauces. He’d recently made vegan rotel and when (our photographer) Demarcus and I arrived, we were treated to biscuits and vegan gravy.

When I tell you that gravy was FYE! Oh. My. Gah. No drippings or fat whatsoever, just an almond milk base and rightly seasoned. My inner fat girl was like YEEEEAH!

As it turns out, this is a preview of what’s to come. The next pop up will be brunch style, breakfast food you can eat anytime. After that, be on the lookout for pizza and eventually vegan BBQ.

Listen…if the rest of his food is this good, I’m sold! This is coming from a very picky eater. Trust me on this and Just Eat, Mane!

 (For updates on pop ups, dishes and what’s new and next, follow Khomorai on Instagram: @fitabsolutebody.)

 

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