Image courtesy of Penn Herb.

Jamie Hickey, a Philadelphia-based NASM, FMS certified trainer, ISSA certified nutritionist and founder of Truism Fitness, is a big fan of shopping locally. In August of 2017, Jamie discovered the Penn Herb Company when he moved to the City of Brotherly Love. 

Penn Herb Company has held an important role in Jamie’s weight-loss and health journey. “I used to weigh 305 pounds, and it took a lot of effort and learning to lose 127 pounds,” Jaime shares. “I never want to be in that position again, so I take my daily nutrition very seriously.” Along with exercise, Jamie knows how important nutrition is—that’s why he and his wife prioritize fresh and healthy foods. 

“We go food shopping on average three times a week,” Jaime says. “This allows us only to buy the freshest ingredients and ensure that they don’t go bad since everything we eat doesn’t contain any preservatives.” 

Penn Herb’s flagship store, 601 North Second St., has been owned by the Betz family for over three generations and features a large selection of 400 wildcrafted herbs, gathered from the U.S. and worldwide in selected forms: tea, powder, extract and capsules. Penn Herb also offers vitamins, pure essential oils, homeopathic preparations, organic and healthy fresh foods, and refrigerated and frozen products.

Some of Jamie’s favorites? Bulk herbs, essential oils, tea accessories, vitamins, medicines, and of course—organic foods. He follows a primarily plant-based diet consisting of fresh vegetables, fruits, and lean proteins. Paying close attention to packaging, he chooses natural foods that don’t have ingredient labels. (Way to go, Jaime!) 

What really stood out to Jaime from the beginning was the store’s selection of herbs. Since 1924, the retailer has specialized in herbs and herbal remedies. Herbs are received daily and are milled, sifted, and encapsulated in Penn Herb’s own facility in Philadelphia.

Shopping locally has changed Jamie’s life in many ways, including allowing him to support his community, meet new friends, and prioritize living a healthy lifestyle. “It’s very convenient having a store close by that makes it easy to purchase organic foods that allow us to eat a healthy diet without taking up too much of our time,” he says. And having experience owning his own business, Jamie understands the amount of work that goes into small businesses. He says, “I try to reciprocate the respect we have for other small businesses whenever I can.” 

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