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Healing for the mind, body and soul at The Wellness Show

With a fear of an obesity epidemic in the air along with addictions to gambling, the Internet, alcohol and drugs, now is a better time than ever to focus on health and wellness. 

The Wellness Show at the Vancouver Convention Centre this past weekend showcased vendors that demonstrated every aspect of living a healthier, more balanced life. From Shiatsu and reflexology, to hemp hearts and nutritious meal replacement shakes, there was something for everyone and plenty to learn.

It was easy to spend a whole day there with back-to-back demos, seminars and workshops running from open to close. Dairy Farmers of Canada held cheese tasting throughout the day, consistently filling every seat with participants eager to sample new varieties and learn about pairings. Favourites seemed to be the Boursin atop delicious fruit bread, and the Smoked Cheddar.

Another crowd-pleaser was the cooking stage hosted by CTV and featured executive chefs from some of Vancouver’s best restaurants, including Raincity GrillTojo'sBrixCentral BistroCioppino'sFederico's Supper ClubBistro PastisWild Rice and Simply Thai. Here they demonstrated how to make certain dishes, offered valuable cooking tips and finished with everyone's favourite part, a sample. It was these and the other vendors’ delicacies that kept people fuelled for hours.

People vultured around to the many booths dishing out treats like flavoured hummus, gluten-free perogies, creamy tomato soup, veggie "beef" tips, tea-infused chocolate, tasty kale chips and sautéed mushrooms. Although mostly healthy, it was easy to leave the event feeling over-indulged. 

That said, it wasn’t all food as many vendors focused on other aspects of healthy living. There were books on disorders and spiritual living, a booth for inter-nasal therapy and another for custom bra-fitting. Even Langara College had a booth, along with multiple personal trainers and fitness machine retailers. 

The Wellness Show was a great event for everyone and drew both young and old, fit to couch potato. Whether checking it out for a few hours or buying the weekend pass and attending each day, one would be hard-pressed to say that they didn't take anything away from the festival...even if it was just a full stomach of healthy treats.

Wayne Howard of Canada Hemp Foods

For more pictures check out my Flickr gallery.

Note: According to a Stats Canada report published in June 2011, over one in four Canadian adults are obese. 

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