Diet & Nutrition

Snack On!

Charles Coristine, owner of LesserEvil, left his Wall Street job to buy this boutique snack company—and the world is a sweeter (and cleaner) place because of it.

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Charles Coristine

There was a time not so long ago when “snacking” was a dirty word. If you were someone who “ate healthy,” you eschewed all of those between-meal indulgences that were most likely fried in some unhealthy oil and/or loaded with sugar and preservatives. Unfortunately, sensible options were few and far between—and their flavor often left a lot to be desired.

But then attitudes changed. Nutritional information became more available. “Grazing” became a viable dietary habit. And a wide panoply of healthy and tasty snacks inundated store shelves.

So the question now becomes not which snacks are genuinely healthy, but which ones make the greatest contribution to personal and planetary welfare? Enter Charles Coristine and his LesserEvil brand.

When Popcorn and Meditation Merge

Coristine left behind a successful career on Wall Street to dive into a whole new world when he bought boutique snack company LesserEvil. Focused on organic popcorn and inspired by his meditations at a holistic nutrition retreat, he conceived of a laughing Buddha as the perfect packaging guru for his brand.

“The gurus on our packages represent our curiosity around our existence and interconnectedness,” Coristine says. “We want to endorse a holistic message of universal tolerance, love, and peace. We believe that there is a guru in each and every one of us. People love the playful and universal messaging, they care about organic, and they care about what they put into their bodies.”

So Coristine set out to source only the best ingredients he could find. For sound reasons. “They actually taste better and are better for you and your family,” he says. “Our mantra around food is that we would not put anything in our snacks that we wouldn’t feed our own children.”

That means organic of course. But it also includes no GMOs, no refined sugars or salts, no vegetable or hydrogenated oils, no antibiotics or hormones, no preservatives, and no artificial colors or flavors.

All of which would mean nothing without flavor. “It’s all about the oils,” says Coristine. You can feel the difference organic coconut oil, avocado oil, and ghee make. It comes down to the experience of eating and how you feel afterwards. Does it make you feel light and fulfilled, or heavy and guilty?”

It’s About More Than Healthy Snacking

Not content with just creating splendid snacks, LesserEvil wants to make a contribution to improving the world in other ways as well. Organic ingredients, sustainable sourcing, energy-saving initiatives, and biodegradable packaging are just a few of their contributions to the welfare of the planet. And they even compost most of their factory waste.

Because for Coristine, LesserEvil is as much a way of life as a business. “I think, if you believe in your heart, all-in conviction is a very powerful thing,” he says. “This is our recipe for life: super-clean ingredients and dynamite taste, for what we hope is a down-and-dirty smash-em-up beautiful life.”

Crunch on This!

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First heavenly popcorn, now Paleo and Egg White Puffs in a range of tasty flavors. And when you want something sweet to sink your teeth into, try LesserEvil’s scrumptious mini cookies in Almond Butter Chocolate Chip and Snickerdoodle. Many of the products are compatible with common dietary restrictions, including dairy-free, vegan, Paleo, and more.