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Women of 1M/1M: Live Well! Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Posted on Tuesday, Dec 18th 2012

You might say Nwenna Kai knows a thing or two about holistic living, considering she independently pioneered the Californian raw food movement in her Los Angeles-based restaurant, Taste of the Goddess Café. Now an adjunct professor, award-winning wellness entrepreneur, author and food activist, she is also the creator of the bestselling course “The 7 Day Raw Foods Cleanse,” from her LiveWell! Movement wellness line.

Nwenna’s raw food endeavors began in 2003 as a self-prescribed fix after battling illnesses for over a decade; upon finding herself completely cured, she surrounded herself with like vegan enthusiasts and they began packaging and selling their wares in health food stores like the local Whole Foods. But Nwenna’s own business soon outgrew collective operations, and she took a chance on a combination restaurant, catering business, home delivery service and product line. When, four years later, the Goddess Café eventually expanded past its limits, Nwenna picked up a new venture without breaking stride.

The LiveWell! Movement, which originated in December of 2007, is the result of Nwenna’s passion for teaching others about how to eat and live healthier. A multi-media total wellness company, LiveWell provides holistic solutions through online and in-person classes, workshops, speaking engagements, books, products, and other services.

Of LiveWell’s offerings, most popular has been “The 7 Day Raw Foods Cleanse,” an online course available around the world instructing how to properly detox mind, body and spirit. Through recipes and planned menus, daily motivational emails, and live teleseminar calls with Nwenna herself, the course offers both the practical and more abstract materials required to complete the cleanse successfully.

Encouraged by the growing trend in food entrepreneurship in Philadelphia, Nwenna and LivingWell have continued to ride this steady momentum with the aide of community support. Modeling her work on food activists such as Bryant Terry of Northern California and famous restaurateur Jamie Oliver, Nwenna looks to address needs by producing sustainable foods through a system that benefits the three pillars: the people, the bottom line, and the environment.

However, the growing popularity of the sustainable food movement presents problems in the form of competitors. Nwenna identifies Ani Phyo, Angela Monarch Stokes, and Jinjee as fellow raw foods gurus similarly at work on books, courses, classes and TV spots, looking to spread the word on the benefits of eating raw.

Next steps include expanding her customer acquisition strategy, so that LivingWell and the 7 Day Cleanse might reach a larger and more tailored audience. Longer term, she also plans to build a Food Hub with marketing partner Jiana Murdic. Its site is currently set for West Oak Lane, Philadelphia; she envisions a combination organic neighborhood grocery store and café where locals can alternately stop in for healthy foods or to take a food prep class at the learning center.

Niche online courses have touched many segments, and Nwenna Kai has focused on raw food diets as her area of focus. I don’t see why a lucrative small business cannot be built on her premise.

This segment is a part in the series : Women of 1M/1M

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The 7-Day-Cleanse is an excellent incentive for encouraging people to live healthier. There are so many added benefits to eating healthier, so hopefully more people will begin to eat raw, or more raw foods, after taking the course. I have always wanted to eat raw but couldn't find much available while eating out. However, it is easier than it seems, and I believe more people should aspire to live a healthier, balanced life in order to feel and be happier. I love the idea of the week long detox, so that people can see how they feel after only one week of cleansing. After going vegetarian, I started enjoying food more than when I was eating filling, high calorie meats. More people should want to take the cleanse into consideration!

Maura Thursday, January 3, 2013 at 12:29 PM PT