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Natural Awakenings Spokane WA/Coeur d'Alene ID

Infused Plant-Based Wellness Strives to be a Resource for the Community

by Sheila Julson

Cheryl Fagras, owner of Infused Plant-Based Wellness, grew up “the standard American way,” eating processed foods from supermarkets, routinely visiting fast food restaurants, and participating in other unhealthy habits ingrained in our culture. Her father was even an executive in the pharmaceutical industry. It wasn’t until 11 years ago, as a mom with five daughters, that Fagras experienced health issues and took a second look at the commercial products her family had been using.

“I played tennis, I was a skier, and I ran half-marathons. I thought I was eating healthy because I watched out for high-trigger words on food packaging, like ‘high fructose corn syrup,’” she reflects. Yet she still experienced problems including an enlarged liver and poor brain function. While navigating the conventional health system of pharmaceuticals and which health care services would be covered by insurance, Fagras experienced her “ah-ha” moment when she looked on her kitchen counter. As a dieter, she was an avid user of the popular artificial sweetener, Splenda.

“I thought I was doing this great thing to reduce calories, but when I researched Splenda and learned what was in it, I was horrified,” she recalls. Thus, began a passionate quest to research ingredients in other products throughout her home—food, personal care items, and household cleaning products. “We removed a lot of things from our cabinets and restocked them with healthier substitutes.”

Fagras and her family then began purchasing food from a trusted local farmer. “I was so inspired by eating farm-fresh produce that I started growing my own vegetables and herbs,” says this passionate plant advocate, who also compiled an extensive herbal medicine cabinet with wellness teas for specific ailments. Realizing she could help others by sharing her extensive research in herbal health, this past November, Fagras opened Infused Plant-Based Wellness, a multi-faceted wellness business offering bulk herbs, apothecary style teas, infusion pots and mugs, and plant-based body care items.

Infused Plant-Based Wellness serves as not only an apothecary with an array of herbal health boosting products, but also as a vehicle to share information. “It’s a boutique wellness store, with targeted products for personal and environmental wellness, and classes to educate people,” explains Fagras. Wooden shelving units are stocked with jars of bulk dried herbal blends. In addition, customers can find items like immune-boosting elderberry syrup and synthetic-free lotions for infants, children and adults. “I love talking to others about simple ways we can improve our health, so you’ll often find me suggesting items such as organic wool dryer balls in lieu of chemical-laden dryer sheets, or ginger for an upset stomach,” she says.

Before opening Infused Plant-Based Wellness, Fagras did extensive research on companies that make top-notch products to offer in her store. “I do my best to source as locally as possible. If I won’t give it to my own family, I won’t sell it,” she affirms. “We also have a hutch with a small sampling of the literature and resource materials I’ve used during my myriad hours of researching herbal and natural wellness. I invite guests to come in and relax while enjoying one of our healthy beverages such as Tibetan jun, red chai herbal lattes, ginger beer, root beer or infused herbal teas. It’s a wonderful community space where people can sit and chat, or read up on health issues,” Fagras says.

Fagras also leads classes and events designed to help people understand the “whys” behind so much of the illnesses that’s commonplace in America today. “People are looking for answers. They want to go natural, but need a little help in that direction,” she says. “My main purpose is to help others discover natural solutions that will help them achieve a healthier lifestyle.”  

Although her journey with Infused Plant-Based Wellness began just a few months ago, Fagras says the experience of helping others find solution-based wellness remedies has been fabulous. “We’re generating a lot of business word-of-mouth, and we have a lot of return customers,” she concludes. “We have something that people are looking for. Natural health is not always an easy world to navigate, but it can be end up being a very exciting adventure. Through education and empowerment, I hope to grow a community of people seeking wellness, and to be that resource for them.”Infused Plant-Based Wellness is located at 413 W. Hastings Rd., Spokane. They are an essential business and are currently open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon, and by appointment. For more information or to set up an appointment, call 509-863-9027 or visit Infused-Wellness.com.

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