By Shirin Tahmasebi
After delivering her first baby five years ago, The Superfood Bowl Cafe owner and vegan specialist, Amie Batow, felt undoubtedly insecure about her body and mind.
Being a mum wasn’t enjoyable with the shed load of insecurities pooling around in Amie’s head.
One day while scrolling through Netflix, Amie stumbled across the Plant Based diet docuseries and from that day onward, the food she put in her body, completely changed.
“I just made the snap decision and I just cut everything out.”
I think many people look at veganism as an excuse to not harm animals but with the diet also comes health benefits such as losing weight, higher serotonin, which in the long run improves your quality of life notably.
Amie is here to discuss how going vegan did just that for her and how she became inspired to open her very own café.
“My mood had lifted, and I was happier. I could get out of bed, get dressed, go out with my little boy and feel happy to do it.
Whereas before that I’d had a real black cloud over me and I wasn’t really enjoying being a mum, that that then became the main reason for doing it.
And, and the weight loss was like an added bonus that.”
Losing weight doesn’t come easy once you’ve had a child, and a lot of time it’s confusing enough figuring out how to start doing it. Mum of two, Amie found her switch to a vegan diet helped her lose an astonishing three stone but to her, it wasn’t just all about the weight.
“It’s not about fitting into a pair of jeans, it’s just about feeling happier.”
Amie found that the diet helped her mind as well as her looks which she described as an ‘added bonus’. Being vegan helped Amie so much that she began to want to spread the word for other mums or people out there who may be struggling as she was.
“Afterwards I thought, why aren’t people talking about this, mum’s in a position that feel like this, why aren’t we talking about this plant-based diet more, because to me it was just amazing.”
The impact the diet had on Amie is why she then set out to help other mums.
Selling from Home
Before opening her café, Amie had been cooking and selling foods from her house to neighbours and other locals who enjoyed the meals.
She found herself chatting away to mums on her doorstep for half an hour at times. The small home business she had started, grew and grew until Amie no longer had to return back to work.
However, selling from home wasn’t enough for Amie as she wanted to create more of a community between mums, and so while walking through her local town one day, she found the perfect spot for a perfect business.
“I was walking through town and I saw a little shop for rent. So, I just rang the number, really flippantly and spoke to a lady and ended up going and viewing it and just falling in love.
I thought, this is the next section me to get out there a bit more.”
Not only did Amie want a place for her new community to grow, but she recognised the struggle for mums and where they go when they want to socialise, a coffee shop, a pub or even the dreaded play areas.
Her café would allow mums to eat well, feel better about themselves and also connect with other mums, much like themselves.
During March 2020, Amie found herself in the hospital with her daughter who had suspected covid which thankfully turned out to be a chest infection.
Due to her focus on her baby girl, Amie struggled to pay attention to what the government were saying in regard to businesses shutting. Nevertheless, she shut her business eventually.
Lockdown became a difficult time for Amie as her landlord was causing problems with his expectations, while Amie struggled to pay rent due to the closure of her café.
These obstacles weren’t quite big enough to stop her.
Amie made the decision to keep her business alive by using her socials.
“I decided that I was going to stay really present on social media. And so, I started doing Instagram, lives and ag TVs, and I was cooking, sharing recipes.
I was just really, really concerned that I would lose that connection with the group of women that I had built.”
At the same time, Amie’s sister had just shut her own business down and had planned to hibernate during lockdown. But Amie was so focused on keeping that bond with her customers, she couldn’t do what other business owners were doing.
Looking towards delivery
In the café, Amie had been selling takeout boxes which were kept in a fridge, but some customers couldn’t come in to collect and so she made the decision to start delivering them herself.
However, after hours and hours of driving around, Amie soon came to the conclusion that it would be too much to do every day.
“This isn’t an effective way to get these meals out, and I don’t enjoy being sat in a traffic parade, I was trying to find all these houses I was getting so stressed”
She then went onto exploring the idea of DPD, which is where the business is at currently.
Amie finds herself at 90% deliveries with her business now, however, still encourages people to pop down and get a drink and some food in order to keep that bond.
“Although we could reopen our cafe. It never ever got as busy as it was before.”
Just before Christmas, Amie’s tenancy was up in the building and so she looked at moving, but the cost of somewhere else was too high. Luckily enough, Amie’s mum came to the rescue.
“If it wasn’t for my mum, I think at that point I might have had to stop. I think if there was a point where you would have had to just say, I need to close the business down it probably would have been at that point.”
Despite her struggles with her café, Amie still finds it within her to fight for that connection and bond she first started out with in the first place. The thought of how many people she has gotten to know and the community she built is what keeps her pushing through.
She is proud to be the owner of an establishment where she is able to help other mums who may be feeling as she was, to feel better about themselves and to give them a place to gossip about their loud neighbours or scary in laws.
The Superfood Bowl café is now up and running, however, Amie finds herself still ‘fighting every month to keep it going’ so if you pass by on your daily walk today, why not stop in and show some support to help keep the doors to clean eating open.
Thank you to Amie Bastow for sharing this very inspiring story, I think I’ll be taking a look at the vegan options on menu’s from now on.
To find Amie’s recipes and cafe updates, follow her socials below:
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