By: Chris Bryant
Want to know what real food is? Simple, just ask Miguel Kristaly. Miguel is known to be a health nut. At 41, he’s an avid runner, Ironman triathlete, and cross fitter with an intense passion for healthy eating habits. He is also the creator of “The Health Nut on Wheels,” a food truck that offers food options primarily based on Paleo nutrition.
Miguel started “The Health Nut on Wheels” because he was disappointed with what he was seeing in the food truck community. He was surprised that nobody was catering to the athletic and “healthy community.” None of the trucks served anything that fit his nutritional beliefs of eating foods that have not been processed, manipulated, altered, or scientifically enhanced in any way. In other words, none of them were offering “real” food.
His entrepreneurial venture became the physical manifestation of his beliefs in a Paleo diet. Miguel describes that Paleo is short for Paleolithic; the premise is that humans have evolved over millions of years to thrive on a specific nutritional profile. What humans ate 10,000 years ago is essentially the Paleo diet; “if you can’t catch it, grow it, hunt it, fish it, or gather it, then don’t eat it”.
Miguel describes his food truck’s meals as “a cross between ancestral health and evolutionary biology.” His ingredients are free of pesticides, antibiotics, steroids, cages, and industrial feeding lots. Which he believes is a strict contrast from the processed carbohydrates, refined sugar, industrial seed, corn and vegetable oils, packaged and refines foods, improperly prepared cereal grains, processed soy products, and processed fruit juices found in today’s everyday foods.
“The Health Nut on Wheels” menu includes items like grass-fed sirloin burgers, pasture-raised chicken and turkey dishes, and Wild Alaskan Salmon. There are always vegetables on hand that are sautéed with coconut oils. The restaurant on wheels also serves smoothies and fresh pressed vegetable juices.
The journey to Miguel’s culinary and health beliefs has been an evolutionary process. He didn’t start off in the culinary industry and he wasn’t always that healthy.
Miguel grew up in a food-driven household and learned his way around the kitchen at a very young age. His mom was always cooking for her son and played the role of chef for parties and weddings. His stepfather was an executive chef at five star resorts in Miami for more than 25 years. But as a young athlete in high school Miguel felt that he could eat whatever he wanted and didn’t really pay attention to the quality of foods he was eating.
He quickly reached the heaviest weight he had ever been and he ended up struggling with it for many years. When he was 35 years old, he told his wife that by the age of 40 he was going to be in the best shape of his life. He developed a vision of himself hiking, paddle boarding, sun bathing, and enjoying his life into his 100 years. He didn’t want to live a life spent in hospitals, feeling sick, tired, and unhealthy. He believes that many people have accepted this as their reality and he hopes that with “The Health Nut on Wheels,” he will be able to inspire everyone he meets to create a similar vision for themselves.
With this lifestyle change, Miguel also experienced a major shift in his career. Even though he came from a culinary family, working in the food business was not his initial calling. Miguel worked in the home renovation industry and to this day is still a Florida licensed General Contractor. When the contracting industry started to suffer because of the economy, it further inspired him to think about a way that he could reinvent himself and fulfill his vision of a long and healthy life.
He wanted a new career and he turned to his parents for guidance. Not surprisingly, they suggested that he start something in the food industry. After realizing the deficiency in healthy foods in the food truck market, Miguel knew the path he was supposed to choose. With the amazing support of his parents, “The Healthnut on Wheels” was born.
Miguel is on track to become a centurion and he is excited about his success and the goals he has for the future. This month, Miguel is getting ready for “The Health Nut on Wheels’” first large scale sports catering event. They have also started speaking with franchising firms with the hopes of expanding into other major cities in the US.