Courtesy of Bella Ramon
By Bella Ramon
Being a busy college student can make it difficult to find time or the resources to consistently eat healthy. Sometimes it simply isn’t an option to meal prep, go to Trader Joe’s, buy healthy food, and cook it on a regular basis. Açai bowls and pressed juices are a great substitute for these meals and are fun motivators to stay on track with healthy eating.
Recently, these delicious and aesthetically pleasing snacks have been popping up all over social media. Other than the appeal of having something beautifully colorful to put on an Instagram story, not many are aware of the incredible health benefits that both açai bowls and pressed juices contain.
According to Helathline, açai berries are full of nutrients and antioxidants. Adding in peanut butter, chia or flax seeds, and other delicious fruits such as bananas, strawberries, and blueberries can create an incredibly filling and nutrient rich meal.
The normal juicing of fruit results in the loss of the majority of the nutrients that are offered. Pressed juicing is a two-step technique that shreds the fruit into a pulp, and then exposes the fruit to extreme pressure via two plates, which allows the end result to have maximum nutrients.
There are plenty of places to find both açai bowls and pressed juices in the District, however, after trying many different locations, the best of the best has been found. The best place to get a mouth-watering açai bowl is South Block. Conveniently, they have three locations around the city. The closest location is at 1309 5th St. NE inside of Union Market, a short walk from the NoMa metro station.
South Block offers many other smoothies and juices, but the restaurant’s best items on the menu are hands-down the açai bowls. Having over five types of bowls on the menu, there are plenty of options for people to choose from. With a wide variety of toppings, customizing a bowl is made easy. Prices ranging between $11 to $13 tend to scare some off, however, they are just as filling, if not more, than a small meal for the same price. Visitors should keep in mind that these bowls are jam packed with protein, fiber, and vitamins.
The go-to pressed juice place in D.C. is JRINK. With the mission of giving people opportunities to receive the necessary daily fruits, vegetables, and nutrients, the establishment’s extensive menu shows this dedication.
Each juice lists its ingredients on the bottle, and while this initially enticing, it can quickly become overwhelming because many of the ingredients are not everyday and well known food items. While the juices are interesting and seemingly packed with nutrient rich items, the fact of the matter is that it is hard to feel satisfied and extremely healthy after drinking one. Unlike the açai bowls, these juices are not filling after one bottle. With prices ranging from $5 to $12, it is hard to cough up that much money for one drink that doesn’t leave a lasting effect. These juices are made to be consumed on a daily basis as a juice cleanse in order to see a difference in energy, skin, health, etc, so weekly subscriptions are available, as well as a 6 pack for $56.
South Block and JRINK are both great places to find nutritious snacks. They offer a wide variety of items on the menu that will appeal to all. Overall, South Block’s açai bowls are more worth the money than the pressed juices simply because they are more filling.