Summer’s drawing to a close, which means kids are headed back to a world of gummies (that 10 percent of naturally-derived fruit juice is vital), greasy pizza, and batter-fried chicken the age of which is probably better left unknown.

Standing in opposition to the current compilation of cafeteria concoctions is Martha Morales, who noticed the nutritional deficit in the modern meal and decided she was going to work against it. After watching her father struggle with diabetes, Morales grew inspired. She developed that inspiration into a plan and eventually decided the timing was right.

Kairos is a Greek word that means ‘the best time,’” Morales explains. “Now is the best time for people to start eating healthy.” Thus, in June, was born Kairos Nutrition Bar, a restaurant that serves healthy meals from breakfast to dinner, Monday through Saturday.

Kairos (at Beach Boulevard and San Pablo Road) has a clean, colorful interior of lime-green walls and bright orange chairs. Diners can choose high-top tables or booths, or sit at the counter. Scoot into a booth and admire the succulent planters or grab a counter stool and watch your juice come to life against a subway tile backdrop. Morales believes that transparency is important when it comes to food preparation, which is why Kairos has an open kitchen and a glass freezer that displays pineapples, watermelon, lemons, strawberries, and more.

Kairos’ menu is eclectic, ranging from garlic juice to collard wraps, to the Latin meals inspired by Morales’ Mexican roots. The ingredients are all-natural, gluten-free, and 100 percent organic. Morales tries to serve as much local produce as she can, and ensures that, at the very least, the food is hormone and pesticide-free. I’ve tried a number of various menu items and I’ve decided my go-to juice is Spicy Lemonade, which has three simple ingredients: green apple, ginger, and lemon. Spicy Lemonade ($3.75 for 12 ounces) is intensely tart and spicy, definitely a good drink if you need to perk up. Another great juice is the Morning Energizer, which includes beets, carrots, ginger, orange, and apple. If none of those ingredients sound appetizing, that’s OK – Kairos lets patrons customize their own juice or smoothie.

I like choices, so I created my own chicken salad bowl ($7.24) with kale, cucumbers, red peppers, green onion, cilantro, and avocado, served in a cardboard box of 100 percent recycled paper. Accompanying the salad was a chili mango dressing, adding a tangy kick to the veggies. The best part about my meal may have been the size of the pieces of cucumbers and red peppers, which were perfectly diced, just the way I like them.

Aside from providing healthy food options, Kairos offers detox programs using their juices, based on three, five, or seven days. One can get 15, 25, or 35 healthy juices, using Kairos’ recipes, or a recipe of his or her own creation. This cleanse program is intended to rejuvenate and reenergize a body clogged with artificial and unhealthy food. The best thing is, there are no questionable powders or dehydrated vegetables in the juices.

Kairos’ motto is “Because the good things take time.” As far as Martha Morales is concerned, the good things give time back, as well. The time, she hopes, will be years added to customers’ healthy lives.

About EU Jacksonville

october, 2021