Sakara Life Founders Reveal Secrets of the Superfood Service They Say Makes Chrissy Teigen 'Feel Sexy'
By Brice Sander
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"I like to say that food should make you feel sexy," Danielle DuBoise teased when ETonline caught up with her in L.A., alongside business partner Whitney Tingle.
DuBoise and Tingle -- childhood friends from Sedona, Arizona, who now live in New York City -- partnered up in 2011 to form Sakara Life, a plant-based meal delivery program that's become a celebrity favorite. Since launching four years ago, the brand's built a fanbase that includes Gwyneth Paltrow, Lily Aldridge, Emmy Rossum and Chrissy Teigen.
Sakara's mission is not wholly focused on weight loss. In fact, Tingle calls weight loss just an "amazing side effect" of the program. Sakara works in a few ways: You can get three chef-crafted meals delivered to your doorstep every day (depending on where you live), you can just do a single day of meals, or you can purchase specific products to make Sakara recipes on your own.
Each plant-based recipe is designed with organic and nutrient-dense "whole foods." ETonline tried a sampling of the made-to-order meals, and they were delicious.
"We don't believe in 'diets,'" Tingle said. "You know, we don't count carbs, calories, points. Nothing. We talk a lot about body intelligence and tuning into your own body.
"We really wanted to make this something that fit into every lifestyle," DuBoise explained. "We know from experience that, unless it's convenient, delicious and gives you the results, you're not going to stick to it ... We wanted to make it so it shows up at your door ready to eat."
"Every single meal is nutritionally designed to optimize your results," DuBoise continued. "And then, we use superfoods in every single meal, and have a 'superfood spotlight' that helps you sort of understand the 'why' behind everything you're eating."
Superfoods are nutrient-rich ingredients believed to be beneficial for health and well-being. Sakara's superfoods include everything from cinnamon, to turmeric and spirulina. DuBoise and Tingle say those superfoods get your body revved up and working at its best.
"By eating this way, we really started to understand that food affects every part of your life," DuBoise explained. "So, it's not just about losing weight. It's also how you feel, which then affects your career, your love life, your sex life. It affects everything ... we're all about letting go of guilt and just really beginning to look at food as nourishment, instead of the enemy."
"Food and nutrition" is just one of Sakara Life's "pillars." Tingle and DuBoise say their program also helps support you in sex and creativity.
"Sakara Life is more than just a meal-delivery program," Tingle promised. "It's actually a revolutionary philosophy that allows weight-loss though focusing on your relationship to your body, and the way that you eat."
Self-esteem and body confidence are also at the heart of Sakara's mission. The business was born out of Tingle and DuBoise's own issues in those areas. Tingle suffered from cystic acne, and says this lifestyle change improved her skin dramatically. DuBoise says Sakara helped her break free from a cycle of yo-yo dieting.
Tingle and DuBoise say their growing celeb fanbase comes to Sakara for the same reasons they continue to use the program: to feel good in all aspects of life.
"I was really, really excited about Lena Dunham [starting Sakara]," DuBoise gushed. "She's just so much about female empowerment and, you know, she carried our bag outside ... it was clear that she was sort of, like, supporting us, and it's really inspiring."
"I think for her, it's really about health," Tingle said of Dunham. "She wants to feel good and have her brain working."
"She's a busy girl," DuBoise added. "And she's a smart girl. She understands the power of food."
Tingle and DuBoise just found out Kate Hudson is also on their meal program, which runs anywhere from about $15 a meal to $33 a meal, depending on which option you chose. But for those not on the coasts (meal delivery is currently limited to Southern California and the Northeast), Sakara offers its "Clean Boutique."
"The 'Clean Boutique' is for everyone who couldn't do the meal program, or just wants to have a healthy pantry," DuBoise explained. The online store is stocked with healthy snacks, including popcorn, and recipe builders, including the brand's range of salad dressings.
"We're actually launching 30 new products in our 'Clean Boutique' next month," Tingle continued. "Everything from our plant protein bars to our superfood muffins. Some of our client favorites -- things they love out of the meal program -- will now be available in the 'Clean Boutique,' as well."
"If you're really looking for a life change, if you're really looking to start to be able to feel really good in your body, this is the answer," Tingle said. "This is what changed our lives and, you know, we're just so honored that we get to share it with everyone now."
"We're basically like your personal chef and nutritionist in one," DuBoise said of the brand's overarching philosophy. "These celebrities and models are so busy, you know, we're sort of like the Sakara moms. We make sure that you're eating well, that you're taken care of."
Tingle and DuBoise are so proud of Sakara, they're offering up a special discount to ETonline readers -- something they've never done before. Head over to SakaraLife.com and enter code SAKARA50 at checkout to get $50 off any organic meal delivery program. The offer only works for first-time clients and expires on Oct. 30.
And to learn more about Sakara client Lena Dunham's health journey, check out the video below.