Bessie Washington's painful joints, fatigue and migraines sent her on a search for herbal remedies. What she discovered worked so well for her that she and her husband, John, opened Healthy Body Health Food Center, Sept. 29, 2006, with the motto, "Helping you to a healthy body, nutritionally."
Today, Washington still conducts research for the best new herbal nutritional products for her loyal customers, employee Ernestine Hendrix says. She also fosters pro-activity in the community about nutritional health.
Becoming proactive can be accomplished, Washington insists, by simple lifestyle changes such as eating nutritionally dense foods and drinking adequate water daily. She is amazed at how many people don't like to drink water even though not doing so endangers their health.
To encourage appropriate lifestyle changes and empower patrons, Healthy Body Health Food Center has, in the past, held free monthly classes and lectures for up to 25 people. The classes have been conducted by master herbalists, chiropractors and naturopathic doctors to educate Jacksonians about everything from herbs to proper alignment of the spine to enhancing the body's innate healing ability.
Today, the biggest challenge for the business is operating on a tight budget, while needing to expand to increase the variety of resources and product offerings to include fresh produce, smoothies and a juice bar.
The couple appears to adhere to the personal advice that Washington would give to others going into business: Have a great passion for your business, but don't get in too deep financially at the beginning.
Healthy Body Health Food Center is located at 1495 W. Northside Drive; 601-713-3818. Hours are Monday through Thursday, noon to 6 p.m.; Friday: 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.