Do I need more enzymes?” This is a question that only the individual can answer, according to his or her own knowledge and understanding, and with the consideration of certain facts. For example, there’s the fact that aging correlates with a decreasing enzyme reserve in the body; therefore, doing all you can to maintain and increase enzyme levels would be beneficial toward increased tissue and organ longevity. There’s also the fact that during all acute and chronic illnesses, enzymes are used up more rapidly than usual, and therefore increasing enzyme intake would be beneficial if you are sick or recovering. People with health problems ranging from stress, hypoglycemia, and obesity to endocrine deficiencies, anorexia nervosa, and many others could all benefit from more enzymes.
Enzymes Enhance Other Supplementation
The utilization of vitamins depends upon enzymes, and enzymes often depend on vitamins. Under clinical observation, it has been shown that when vitamins and minerals are combined in capsules with enzymes, smaller amounts of vitamins and minerals are needed. I saw this phenomenon in a patient of mine who needed 70 milligrams of supplemental zinc daily to overcome a severe depletion. When zinc was combined with certain enzymes, this patient needed only 3 micrograms daily—a very drastic reduction in supplementation.
We’re all interested in saving money, and it’s possible to reduce our intake of vitamin and mineral supplements while maintaining our daily requirements. Many clinicians have learned that a patient is more likely to follow a health regimen if it can be made as easy and as practical as possible.
Numerous methods are used to detoxify the body: fasting, purging, vegetarian or macrobiotic diets, “the grape cure,” and many others. All of these have been successful for some people on their own. But none of these regimes will work all the time. What can be done to improve all these cleansing methods? Enzymes can be used not only to maintain health, but also during detoxification programs and in medical and nonmedical approaches to healing.
They can be a support system for the entire body and all health-promotion processes.
Any time cooked food is eaten, it must be digested by enzymes. Then, leftover wastes and any toxins from the food are broken down by scavenger enzymes of the immune system. The body draws enzymes from all of its tissue resources for these jobs. Heavy starches (such as bread), animal proteins, and fried foods are more difficult to break down, requiring more enzymes. This is why a vegetarian diet is often used for cleansing. Many are raw-food diets, which contribute enzymes to the enzyme-stomach as well as the rest of the body. But even cooked vegetables and grains, which use some of the body’s enzymes, are easier to digest than more concentrated foods.
The energy required to break down food, extract the nutrients, and eliminate waste products while on a cleansing diet—especially if raw juices and predigested foods are used—is far less than the energy required to digest the everyday, traditional, nearly enzyme-free cooked diet. I’ve seen tremendous recoveries using predigested-food diets of raw sprouts, fresh-squeezed juices, and soaked seeds and nuts (soaked 4-8 hours minimum) that are blended before being eaten.
As previously described, two major changes take place in predigestion: the food is broken into simpler components—proteins into amino acids, starches into simpler sugars, and fats into fatty acids; and the food’s enzyme content increases, sometimes tenfold. Predigested foods donate enzymes, relieve the body of the burden of breaking down concentrated foods, and conserve energy and enzymes for other metabolic functions, such as cleansing.
Detoxification is intended to clean the bloodstream and balance the endocrine glands so they work in harmony instead of being overstimulated and exhausted. This purifies the organs and tissues and takes stress off the entire body. Within the bloodstream and body tissues, enzymes act as scavengers, breaking down cholesterol and other fatty deposits and assisting in the overall detoxification process.
Enzymes for “Healing Crisis” Recovery and Bowel Cleansing
I’ve mentioned that enzymes, as a part of the immune system, break down toxins and various accumulations in our bodies. When there is a shortage of lipase in the blood, for instance, cholesterol can accumulate. It seems logical, then, that any enzyme-increasing diet would aid in purification, especially as enzymes can be reabsorbed and reused by the body.
Many authors have written about the “healing crisis” (it’s covered thoroughly in Your Body Speaks—Your Body Heals). A healing crisis occurs when the system is overloaded with toxins and the body works to eliminate them through the skin, bowels, sinuses, kidneys, and lungs, producing such symptoms as rashes, congestion, constipation, diarrhea, and urinary tract problems. All of these are symptoms of body cleansing. Tissues releasing poisons that have been stored for years may even contain drugs ingested long ago.
During these crises, enzymes are busy breaking down wastes so the body can rid itself of them. It would seem that adding enzymes during a healing crisis could only be beneficial and aid in cleansing, and this has proven to be true. (To research this topic, read Dr. Edward Howell’s Food Enzymes for Health and Longevity and Enzyme Nutrition: The Food Enzyme Concept.111)
Sometimes detoxification actually weakens the person, even though a good cleansing diet has been prescribed. If patients have a weak constitution or a chronic disease, or are easily discouraged, they tend to go back to their old diet as soon as the first healing crisis is experienced. They think the cleansing diet isn’t worth it because it makes them feel worse, even if only temporarily. When poisons eliminated from the tissues enter the bloodstream, the endocrine glands secrete hormones, which in turn affect the eliminative organs, resulting in a feeling of stimulation. When the glands become overworked and exhausted, there will be a feeling of exhaustion, and recovery time will be necessary. These people really need enzyme support.
Using supplemental enzymes and predigested foods will take much of the stress from these patients’ systems. They also need a good learning process in relation to healthful eating habits, fasting, and the proper use of colonics and enemas as adjuncts to healing. Bowel cleansing is one of the first measures considered by natural healing practitioners.
The bowel is the “sewage system” of the body, and it too must be cleaned out. It has been estimated that 80 percent of all diseases start in the large bowel. What generally happens is that undigested food putrefies in the colon, producing by-products that are absorbed through the intestinal wall into the bloodstream and deposited in the joints and other tissues. Enzymes can help with this, as Dr. Selle has shown that adding enzymes to the diet reduces fecal bulk, speeds transit time, and can reduce potentially stinky nitrogen compounds (found in high-protein foods) 30-60 percent.11
Infants and Children
Many diseases in early stages of development are promoted by the ingestion of foods lacking the vitamins, minerals, and enzymes needed daily by the body. Manufacturing procedures, depleted soils, and cooking create undernutrition. I have emphasized counteracting the enzyme deficiency that often occurs with age, but young people need enzymes too.
Complete breast-feeding of infants is very important. Mother’s milk has all the nutrients needed for the growth of a child, along with a large amount of live enzymes, which a baby thrives upon. Milk formulas lack enzymes, and artificial formulas can even be toxic, promoting infections, mucus conditions, fevers, diarrhea, colic, and allergies.
Over a period of years at a clinic operated by the Infant Welfare Society of Chicago, the health and development of 20,061 infants was closely monitored for the first 9 months of their lives. Of the total, 48.5 percent were wholly breast-fed, 43 percent partially breast-fed, and 8.5 percent wholly artificially fed. Table 2 shows the mortality rates of these groups:
Infants Deaths % Mortality
Wholly breast-fed 9,749 15 0.5
Partially breast-fed 8,605 59 0.7
Artificially fed 1,707 144 8.4
Table 2
Note that the mortality rate for the artificially fed infants was 56 times greater than among the breast-fed. Four of the 9,749 breast-fed infants died of respiratory infections, compared to 82 of the 1,707 artificially fed infants.7
In the United States, one deformed child is born every 5 minutes, which is the equivalent of one in every ten families. That’s 250,000 deformed infants yearly, 75 percent of whom have mental defects. When considering an infant’s health, a major factor is the mother’s health. In Food Is Your Best Medicine, Dr. Henry G. Bieler states, “Unless the mother is detoxified before conceiving, the baby comes into the world…full of toxins from the mother’s blood and an intestine full of meconium (black bile). The baby is, in fact, so toxic that even with the best care it usually takes three years to eliminate his or her inherited birth poisons.”^
Another factor is that a baby brought into the world with a weak constitution and a poison-laden bloodstream is then expected to exist on a diet of concentrated, enzyme-free foods. Heavy starches and mucus-inducing foods (such as dairy products, grains, and sugar) bring on respiratory disorders, asthma, pneumonia, measles, and runny noses. Eating excessively fatty food brings on high-cholesterol problems, acne, and boils.
Doctors have recently begun to examine school children for high cholesterol and triglycerides. The foods most school children consume lack the three major enzymes—lipase, protease, and amylase—that help break down foods in the digestive tract. This results in the absorption of large protein and fat molecules, which lay the foundation for allergies, obesity, constipation, and fatigue.
Two of the major problems now faced by school systems are hyperactivity and absenteeism. It is very difficult for children to learn when they cannot concentrate. The relationship between the mind and what the body eats is of paramount importance. Learning disabilities are often caused by nutrient deficiencies, and the majority of these deficiencies are caused by foods that lack enzymes—too much cooked food, junk food, processed food, and the like. The child’s body becomes toxic and the nerves become irritated.
Two children out of every 100 have a neurological disorder observable by medical examination. But what about the child who doesn’t exhibit a recognized disorder but suffers from an overstimulated nervous system caused by soft drinks, caffeine in chocolate bars, sugar, or other stimulants? Haven’t you ever experienced the jitters when you’ve had too much coffee or sugar?
A child’s body is much more sensitive than an adult’s; in some cases, even the mere use of salt can cause hyperactivity, dehydration, and allergies.
Children who maintain high enzyme levels maintain high energy levels. Consider the many ways growing children and young adults lose enzymes. During all fevers and infections, the immune system uses large amounts of enzymes to protect the body and eliminate toxins and bacteria. In fact, as previously stated, any time the temperature of the body is raised, enzymes are used up—during healthy exercise as well as during fever. More calories are burned during exercise, and their natural oxidation is initiated by enzymes.
Overfeeding, especially with cooked, devitalized food, causes a child’s digestive organs to secrete large amounts of enzymes daily. Over time, this can exhaust the enzyme-producing organs and deplete the immune system, putting a strain on every tissue throughout the body. This child will tend to act exhausted, compared to peers, because his or her energy is being used for digesting foods and coping with the large amounts of waste left over from an unnaturally large food supply. The body is then required to store large amounts of fat, which puts an additional strain on the heart, kidneys, and lungs.
It should be clear that we use up our enzymes in many different ways. The proper thing to do is to feed your child and yourself only when you are hungry. This will conserve enzymes. You and your child should eat most of your food raw and add enzyme supplements to enhance digestion. Consider occasional, short fasts. During fasts, enzymes can focus on cleaning up undigested materials in the blood and purifying the whole body. Then, resume a good, healthy diet; cut out the junk food, and increase fresh fruit and vegetables.
Enzymes and Nutrition for Athletes and Exercisers
What about the athlete, who may be taking vitamins, minerals, and concentrated foods—what makes all of these elements work? Enzymes. Athletes can benefit by taking enzyme supplements, because any time the body temperature is raised, as during exercise, enzymes are used up more rapidly than normal. Carbohydrates are burned more rapidly, and more nutrients are needed for fuel. For an athlete who eats mostly cooked food, this is like burning the candle at both ends. Enzymes are used up rapidly, and little is brought in to replenish the supply.
One of an athlete’s main concerns should be what type of food is needed to maintain a healthy body and replace nutrients lost during exercise or competition. Enzymes, carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals are the fuels the body needs to function properly. When you exercise, most of these substances are used up rapidly and need replacement.
When I ask people if they feel that their diet is correct in relation to the amount of activity they are involved in, their answer is frequently, “Yes, I get plenty of foods high in B vitamins, carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.” I’ve found that these individuals also monitor the nutritional values of foods and calculate their personal needs.
Unfortunately, eating the proper amounts of food and nutrients is only half the battle. Another main concern of an athlete is absorbing and utilizing the food ingested. Food often lacks the proper enzymes—and without enzymes, it cannot be digested completely and the body cannot use its nutrients appropriately. This can result in bloating, fatigue, and stiffness. Arteries harden and undigested fats thicken the blood, reducing the proper utilization of oxygen and cholesterol. The consequences of a lack of enzymes are innumerable; the main point is that enzymes can be a missing link in good nutrition.
A person who exercises regularly is concerned about getting and staying in shape. Strength and endurance are the goals of such individuals. How, then, can anyone achieve endurance if his or her cells are not getting the proper nutrients? Nutrients may be present in foods you eat, but the workforce of the body is enzymes. Most vitamins, for instance, are called coenzymes because they must combine with enzymes before the body can use them.
Over-nutrition and under-absorption result in a low-energy system. People often believe that they don’t recover from exercise readily enough because they either overdid it or didn’t do enough. The problem may actually be that the engine is congested with unusable fuel.
The more enzymes you take in through eating a good quantity of raw foods and supplementing your diet with enzymes, the more energy you’ll have. It’s been said that half the body’s energy is spent digesting food. If exogenous enzymes (enzymes taken in through food or supplementation) are added to the diet daily, more nutrients will be available and less food will be needed, reducing digestive stress and waste elimination. With this kind of energy conservation, the athlete will be able to work out more often and with greater intensity, and will require less recovery time.
Whenever exercise or sports participation is considered, you must be healthy to carry out the program effectively. You must add to your enzyme reserve, not deplete it. It’s great to enjoy sports and other related activities, but it will be a short-lived experience if your metabolic enzyme reserves are not maintained and you fail to supplement the daily losses to your system.
Whether you’re an athlete or an exerciser, this information is of paramount importance. If you do not pay close attention to your nutrition, exercise can cause rapid aging rather than help to keep you young and vital. Exercise is a breaking-down and building-up process, and muscle micro-tears and the like from exercise are good—if the body’s circulation and nutrition support replacement of the damaged tissue with new, elastic tissue.
When it comes to inflammation, the immune system acts the same during exercise as during disease. It is very dependent on enzymes in regard to inflammation and protection from damage. Hormone-like cytokines are involved in cell-to-cell communication, such as immune system interactions. A change in certain cytokine levels is of specific interest, as it allows us to recognize immune system imbalances.
A balance between the two cytokine categories, Thl and Th2, indicates optimal health. Thl cytokines produce inflammation in response to exercise, bacterial, viral, and fungal responses. This is a normal, healthy response. But uncontrolled, this response can perpetuate tissue-damaging immune reactions. During acute inflammation, Th2 cytokines are the anti-inflammatory responders and counteract Thl. Another good thing. Th2 is found to be high during asthma, eczema, allergic imbalances, and other inflammations.
Removal of Thl cytokines to downgrade inflammation is mediated by proteolytic enzymes. These enzymes combine with a carbohydrate-protein compound (glycoprotein), and this new complex has the capacity to bind with Thl and other cytokines, facilitating their removal. This enzyme complex also binds with proteins damaged by oxidative stress. During exercise, proteins in muscle fibers are broken down, free radicals are produced, and oxidative stress is created. To counter this damage, I often suggest taking extra proteolytic enzymes between meals, eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, and taking extra antioxidants. (Juice Plus+®, especially the Vineyard Blend®, is excellent for this purpose. See Your Body Speaks—Your Body Heals.)
Back to cytokines. Once they’re back in balance, regeneration takes place. The importance of systemic enzymes cannot be denied during this process. The oral administration of exogenous proteolytic enzymes such as trypsin, chymotrypsin, and the plant enzymes bromelain and papain will help keep us young. (The National Enzyme Company in Forsyth, MO, offers wonderful enzymes; see
Joint health is improved tremendously by using enzyme support. Research has shown enzymes to be as effective as some nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), especially for sports injuries and their prevention, hip and knee injuries, and preserving joint cartilage damage.1’** Wonder why there are so many hip and knee replacements as we get older? When we exercise and train, we’re literally tearing down our joints, sweating out minerals, and creating oxidative stress (free radical damage). In other words, we age!
Here again are my recommendations for a General Anti-Inflammatory Program.
Recommendations for a General Anti-Inflammatory Program
• using digestive enzymes with meals
• using proteolytic enzymes between meals
• using Juice Plus+® products (especially Vineyard Blend®)
• keeping hydrated
• increase vegetables and minimizing fruit
• using buffered vitamin C
• using lipoic acid
• using methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)
• monitoring your salivary and urinary pH (see below)
You can also add herbs and other specific supplements for particular needs. Find a good health practitioner to help with proper dosages. (Use the system detailed in ProMetabolics: Your Personal Guide to Transformational Health and Healing to monitor your pH, your body’s response to diet and supplements, your hormonal balance, and more.)

Raw foods put you back in touch with food’s real taste, real texture, and whole fiber. Eating raw foods allows you to keep a good balance of enzymes in your system as well. When you combine a diet higher in raw foods with the use of juicing, you get the added advantage of concentrated vitamins and minerals in a readily bioavailable form.
Raw Juice
Starting in the 1940s and continuing well into the 50s and 60s, naturopathic physician Dr. Norman Walker, “the guru of juicing,” helped thousands of people regain their health through the use of juiced 7 Another physician of the time, Dr. Max Gerson, also emphasized juice in treatment for chronic illnesses. He believed that administering uncooked food in the form of “live” juice was the fastest way to help rejuvenate the body of an ill person, and he had his patients drink 8-10 ounces of fresh-made carrot and apple juice every 2 hours.35
Drinking fresh fruit and vegetable juices daily as a means of supplying much-needed vitamins, minerals, and enzymes was reemphasized in the 1990s by “the juiceman,” Jay Kordich, who saved his own life through dietary changes, particularly juicing. His example and writings encouraged many to take up the practice of consuming juice—as much as 1-3 quarts a day.19
Juices put little stress on the digestive tract, because they are easy to absorb and their nutrients are sent into the bloodstream within minutes. Contrast this to the hours it takes to digest a solid meal, and to the small amounts of nutrients available to the body even after several hours of digestion. In addition, most of our foods are already cooked, which destroys 40-60 percent of the amino acids, a large percentage of the minerals, and all the enzymes if cooked at a temperature higher than 120°F. Over the years, we have been feeding ourselves overcooked, deficient food, most likely grown in poor-quality soil. But because juicing uses fresh, uncooked food, these deficiencies are avoided.
Juice can make a remarkable difference for people who are sick. Suddenly, the body is getting fed with easy-to-digest liquid, food/liquid nutrients, and enzymes. That can be a tremendous boost to the immune system, as well as to overall health. Using juice is such a safe and effective way to rebalance the body, no matter what its condition. Juices cleanse the system, rebuild it, and balance it.
The use of juice between meals is one of the most effective ways to cut down on cravings for unhealthy or unnecessary foods. Eating several big meals a day makes us feel dull and diminished. Freeing up the energy used for digestion provides a greater storehouse of healing potential and creative and intellectual activity. We start to feel nourished by the juice in a way we haven’t experienced before. Soon, we are also choosing to eat in a way that supports this new form of nourishment.
Juice itself is not a therapy but a foundation for other therapies. Some people can’t take heavy supplements or drugs; others can’t radically change their eating habits; but almost everybody can start drinking juice.
Juice Recommendations
Fruit juices are “the cleansers” and vegetable juices are “the essential toners and builders.” In general, I recommend drinking fruit juice in the morning and vegetable juice in the afternoon and evening. Additionally, I support the
use of juices to deal with imbalances in particular bodily systems. By combining the Western approach to nutrition (in terms of eating, digestion, and the distribution of the nutrients through the glands) with the Eastern or Chinese approach (in terms of energy), I have developed an advanced methodology to determine exactly what foods and juices are good for what parts of the body and what health conditions. (For full details, see Your Body Speaks—Your Body Heals.)
A Juicing Alternative
People often start juicing with great enthusiasm but then lose heart and fail to keep up the daily program, because they don’t want to take the time or energy to prepare produce for juicing, or their schedules make it difficult to have fresh juices every day, or they travel frequently and easily get out of the juicing habit. Other people are put off from even trying a juicing program by the expense of a high-quality juicer and fresh produce in large quantities. The commitment to better health though food is one that many are unable or unwilling to make.
But I have good news for health-conscious people who need a convenient way to have juice when they work or travel, or who want the health benefits of juicing without the labor. I had long theorized that a powdered juice with the fiber added back to it and enzymes added as well would be a superb addition or alternative to juicing, and some excellent products are now on the market. Furthermore, it is possible to concentrate several types of juice into one capsule or 1 teaspoon of powder, thus providing the nutrients of four to six different vegetables or fruits at once. This can be particularly advantageous for those who are using juice combinations to support specific bodily systems.
For enhancing a child’s diet—especially with a child reluctant to eat vegetables and fruits—powdered juices can be the answer to a prayer. Imagine giving your children the benefits of kale, parsley, cabbage, broccoli, and apple, all in a convenient, palatable, powdered form. Although I encourage parents to change their own diets and model eating fresh, raw foods for their children, I know this is difficult for some, impossible for others. So a good powdered juice is the next best thing.
But be forewarned that not all powdered-juice products meet high standards of quality. Some companies simply freeze-dry a concentrated juice, in which the nutrients were already destroyed by cooking/heating. This, in my
estimation, is a seriously deficient product. The products I recommend are processed in a way that preserves the original nutrients, and adds fiber and enzymes too.
The Birth of Juice Plus+®
Before I tell you about the research behind Juice Plus+®, I’d like to tell you the personal story that led to the development of this whole-food product. When we’re experiencing a trauma or other significant event, we don’t always fully understand it until it has passed, and then we realize that it has changed our lives for the better. Living a life is a lesson itself and is always teaching us something; we just have to learn how to interpret the direction it is taking us. Even a chronic illness is pointing us in a specific direction, as I learned when my father got sick.
It was 1980 and I was on a lecture tour, teaching herbal seminars in Denver, CO. During a break, I received a phone call from my father. He told me his spleen had swollen to the size of a football. It was so large he was using one of his Marine Corp belts to hold it up and it was so painful that he could hardly move. My mother made an appointment for him at a nearby hospital, where the doctors could not believe how large his spleen had grown—and it was still growing.
At the end of the day, my dad called me again and said he was diagnosed with lymphoma, cancer of the lymphatic system. I was so stunned I couldn’t even reply. I just held the phone, praying that I didn’t really hear what he had said. My throat closed up, so tight I could hardly breathe. He felt my shock and distress and told me everything was going to be okay. Being a naturopath and teaching people for years how to live by the laws of nature, I had to ask myself, why did this have to happen? (Don’t we all wonder why, when something so traumatic happens to us?)
I told my dad I’d be home in four days as soon as my tour was over. By the time I got there, his doctors had already removed his spleen and started chemotherapy. I was floored, totally irate. No questions had been asked—they just did the surgery and started pumping him full of drugs.
After three weeks, my father had lost 40 pounds and nothing was working. The chemotherapy had failed and there was nothing more they could do. His doctor called our family together and told us my dad had no more than three weeks to live. After breaking the news to my dad, I asked if he’d like to try natural therapy at my clinic in Tucson, AZ, where I would take care of him.
He said, “I would have come to you before this, but I didn’t want you to be responsible if anything bad would have happened to me.” I picked him up and carried him out of the hospital without even checking him out.
By the time we got to Tucson, he weighed 136 pounds, and his cancer was traveling so fast through his body that he couldn’t eat or drink. How do you nourish somebody who can’t eat or drink? I started massaging him every day with olive oil so his body would absorb the fat through his skin. He could only sip water, so I devised a plan to get more nutrients in through another route. I built a slant-board for him to lie on, made fresh green juice with kale, parsley, and some additional liquid chlorophyll, and used an enema bag to feed him through the bowel with this juice daily.
As he got stronger, he was able to drink vegetable juices by mouth. Fruit juices, however, made him feel ill because of their sugar. You don’t want to feed cancer cells sugar, because they thrive on it; plus, it acidifies the body, putting an even greater strain on a sick person’s system.
I wanted to find a way to get more concentrated nutrition into his body to increase his strength and boost his healing, and it occurred to me that if I could juice the vegetables and dry the juice, the powder would be more concentrated than the juice itself. I set up some small dryers in my office and found that it would take hours to dry the juice, but it worked. I’d give him tablespoons of vegetable juice powder stirred into small amounts of water daily. To my amazement—keep in mind, at that time we knew nothing about phytochemicals—in two months he put on 30 pounds. There was no meat or carbohydrates other than tablespoons of dried vegetable juice in his diet. I wondered, how could someone put on so much weight without eating?
He then got to the point where he could also drink fruit juice powder without feeling ill, so he’d have fruit juice powder in the morning and vegetable juice powder the rest of the day. I gave him very little fruit juice powder, though, as I noticed that if I gave him too much, his urine’s pH would turn acidic. I also added proteolytic enzymes and some herbs to the regime. I was constantly changing the dosages of his supplements according to his pH, using the monitoring system in my book, ProMetabolics.
The results were astonishing. Within three months of my taking over his treatment, my father got out of bed and remodeled my kitchen. He had been a carpenter his whole life and loved working with wood. Continuing on a nutritional program of eating large amounts of vegetables, dried juice powders, and soaked and sprouted seeds and nuts, he went back to work within six months and worked as a carpenter for another six years. It’s my opinion that he’d still be alive today if his doctors had not removed his spleen and given him such high doses of drugs during his hospitalization.
From my father’s recovery, I realized the hidden healing power of whole foods, so I began studying all fruits and vegetables known to man, and I learned that some were much more nutrient-dense than others. Ironically, the ones most concentrated in nutrients were the ones most people didn’t eat at all, or always cooked before eating: parsley, beets, cabbage, and broccoli, to name a few.
Experimenting over several months, I created one concentrated juice- powder formula with fruits and another with vegetables—the most nutrient- dense fruits and vegetables on the planet. Soon my clinic looked more like a produce-drying facility, and everyone who came to me, regardless of the problem, was given a bag of each powder. The healings that I observed were no less than miraculous; I knew I was on to something big when my patients were getting well so fast.
The formulas I used in my clinical practice are now the most wonderful line of fruit and vegetable concentrates, called Juice Plus+®. I designed and patented these products, and NSA, Inc. in Memphis, TN, manufactured, distributed, and promoted them. Benefiting thousands of people in over 30 countries, Juice Plus+® is the most researched nutraceutical in the world today. (For detailed information, see
Just before my father died, he was so concerned about my professional reputation that he said, “If I die, will people still believe in you? Will they still buy your books?” I said, “Dad, what we accomplished together, this idea of concentrated fruits and vegetables, someday will be known all over the world.” And that’s exactly what happened. My father’s recovery gave birth to the most wonderful product line of fruit and vegetable concentrates, Juice Plus+®.
My father taught me pride and honor. He would tell me that a man’s word is all he has. In over 50 years of being a carpenter, he never once had a written contract with anyone—only an agreement of a smile, honor, and love. He will always own a piece of my heart. I know he is always with me; he’s my strength and motivation.
The Research Behind Juice Plus+
I’d like to give special thanks and appreciation to NSA’s corporate family and distributors for believing in me and the Juice Plus+® concept, especially President Jay Martin and Vice President John Blair, who are totally responsible for the marketing, research, and distribution of these products. Thanks also go to Jeff Roberti, who introduced me to NSA and was the first person to acknowledge the validity of this concept.
Numerous clinical studies published in peer-reviewed scientific journals have demonstrated the following benefits:
Juice Plus+® delivers key, easily absorbed phytonutrients. Several studies have shown the bioavailability of select nutrients found in Juice Plus+® in a variety of populations. At Tokyo Women’s Medical University, Juice Plus+® was shown to increase the bioavailability of various nutrients. (Kawashima A, et al. Four week supplementation with mixed fruit and vegetable juice concentrates increased protective serum antioxidants and folate and decreased plasma homocysteine in Japanese subjects. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr 2007 16:411-21.) The bioavailability of Juice Plus+® was also demonstrated in studies in Europe (Medical University of Vienna and King’s College) and Australia (University of Sydney). (Kiefer L, et al. Supplementation with mixed fruit and vegetable juice concentrates increased serum antioxidants and folate in healthy adults.] Am Coll Nutr 2004 23:205-11; Leeds AR, et al. Availability of micronutrients from dried, encapsulated fruit and vegetable preparations: a study in healthy volunteers./Hum Nutr Dietetics 2000 13:21— 7; Samman S, et al. A mixed fruit and vegetable concentrate increases plasma antioxidant vitamins and folate and lowers plasma homocysteine in men./ Nutr 2003 133:2188-93.)
In the United States, the bioavailability of Juice Plus+® has been shown in young adults (University of Florida), middle-aged people (Vanderbilt University School of Medicine), and the elderly (University of Texas Health Science Center). (Nantz MP, et al. Immunity and antioxidant capacity in humans is enhanced by consumption of a dried, encapsulated fruit and vegetable juice concentrate./Nutr 2006 136:2606-10; Houston MC, et al. Juice powder concentrate and systemic blood pressure, progression of coronary artery calcium and antioxidant status in hypertensive subjects: a pilot study. Evidence-Based Compl Alt Med 2007 doi:10.1093/ecam/nell08; Wise JA, et al. Changes in plasma carotenoids, alpha-tocopherol, and lipid peroxide levels in response to supplementation with concentrated fruit and vegetable extracts: a pilot study. Curr Ther Res 1996 57:445-61.)
Juice Plus+® reduces oxidative stress. Several investigations have reported that Juice Plus+® reduced various markers (signs) of oxidative stress. A study at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro showed that Juice Plus +® Orchard, Garden, and Vineyard Blends® together were effective in reducing a marker of oxidative stress associated with aerobic exercise. (Bloomer RJ, et al. Oxidative stress response to aerobic exercise: comparison of antioxidant supplements. Med Sci Sports Ex 2006 38:1098-1105.) Improvements in other markers have been noted in studies of sedentary people in the United States (University of Texas Health Science Center) and England (King’s College). (Wise JA, et al. Changes in plasma carotenoids, alpha-tocopherol, and lipid peroxide levels in response to supplementation with concentrated fruit and vegetable extracts: a pilot study. Curr TherRes 1996 57:445-61; Leeds AR, et al. Availability of micronutrients from dried, encapsulated fruit and vegetable preparations: a study in healthy volunteers./Human Nutr Dietetics 2000 13:21-7.)
Juice Plus+® supports the immune system. A healthy immune system protects the body, and good nutrition is critical for a healthy immune system. Clinical studies showed that Juice Plus+® improved several measures of immune function in young adult students at the University of Florida and in elderly people at the University of Arizona. (Nantz MP, et al. Immunity and antioxidant capacity in humans is enhanced by consumption of a dried, encapsulated fruit and vegetable juice concentrate./Nutr 2006 136:2606- 10; Inserra PF, et al. Immune function in elderly smokers and nonsmokers improves during supplementation with fruit and vegetable extracts. IntegrMed 1999 2:3-10.)
Juice Plus+® protects DNA. DNA becomes damaged and fragile when exposed to oxidative stress; a high-quality diet rich in fruits and vegetables (and their antioxidants) helps protect DNA from oxidative damage that can weaken its structural integrity. Studies showed a reduction in DNA damage after taking Juice Plus+® in young adults (University of Florida) and an elderly population (Brigham Young University). (Nantz MP, et al. Immunity and antioxidant capacity in humans is enhanced by consumption of a dried, encapsulated fruit and vegetable juice concentrate. JNutr 2006 136:2606-10; Smith MJ, et al. Supplementation with fruit and vegetable extracts may decrease DNA damage in the peripheral lymphocytes of an elderly population. Nutr Res 1999 19:1507-18.)
Juice Plus+® positively affects key cardiovascular indicators. Several investigations have found that Juice Plus+® reduces homocysteine levels. A clinical study at the University of Sydney showed a reduction of homocysteine levels in participants whose levels were already within an acceptable range. (Samman S, et al. A mixed fruit and vegetable concentrate increases plasma antioxidant vitamins and folate and lowers plasma homocysteine in men. JNutr 2003 133:2188-93.) Researchers in Foggia, Italy, found that Juice Plus+® reduced homocysteine levels in participants whose levels had been elevated. (Panunzio MF, et al. Supplementation with fruit and vegetable concentrate decreases plasma homocysteine in a dietary controlled trial. NutrRes 2003 23:1221-8.)
Researchers at the University of Maryland found that participants who consumed Juice Plus+® were better able to maintain elasticity of their arteries, even after a high-fat meal. (Plotnick GD, et al. Effect of supplemental phytonutrients on impairment of the flow-mediated brachial artery vasoactivity after a single high-fat meal./Am Coll Cardiol 2003 41:1744-9.) Investigators at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine monitored several measures of vascular health in a low-risk population taking Juice Plus+® for two years, and noted modest improvements with no adverse side effects. (Houston MC, et al. Juice powder concentrate and systemic blood pressure, progression of coronary artery calcium and antioxidant status in hypertensive subjects: a pilot study. Evidence-Based ComplAltMed 2007 doi:10.1093/ecam/nell08.)
Examples of Current and Past Juice PIus+® Research Affiliations
Brigham Young University
Georgetown University
King’s College, London, England
Medical University of Graz, Austria
Medical University of Vienna, Austria
Tokyo Women’s Medical University, Japan
University of Arizona University of Birmingham, England
University of California, Los Angeles University of Florida
University of Maryland School of Medicine
University of Milan, Italy
University of Mississippi Medical Center
University of North Carolina-Greensboro
University of South Carolina
University of Sydney, Australia
University of Texas Health Science Center
University of Texas/MD Anderson
University of Wurzburg, Germany
Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
Wake Forest University (with NCI-National Institutes of Health)
Yale University-Griffin Hospital Prevention Research Center

Dr. Humbart “Smokey” Santillo, N.D., is recognized as a visionary and pioneer in the growing field of Natural Therapeutics. He is the author of eight books—including the bestselling Food Enzymes: The Missing Link to Radiant Health and Natural Healing with Herbs, ProMetabolics: Your Personal Guide to Transformational Health and Healing, and his latest, —Your Body Speaks—Your Body Heals, read by more than 3.5 million people worldwide. A member of the Naturopathic Medical Association, he holds several patents in the field of nutrition and is highly sought after by sports shows and talk shows.
Born and raised in Lockport, New York, Dr. Santillo received a Bachelor of Science degree from Edinboro State Teacher’s College in Pennsylvania, attending on football and track scholarships.
He subsequently developed 33 allergies and the early stages of rheumatoid arthritis; three years of suffering through traditional treatments with little or no relief launched his passionate, life-long quest for better health. Seeking answers and alternatives, he earned the degrees of Doctor of Naturopathy, Health Practitioner, and Master Herbalist. With his own health restored, he has since offered counseling and healing to more than 30,000 patients through his practice.
At the 1995 U.S. Track and Field World Masters Games, comprising 6,400 athletes from 74 countries, Dr. Santillo anchored his 4 x 100-meter relay team to a gold medal victory. In the same year he broke two state records in the 100- and 200-meter races at the Empire State Games in New York, and won both the 100- and 200-meter races in the Canadian Nationals. He continues to compete today, taking first place in the 100-meter race at the 2008 New Jersey State Finals, and first place in the 100-meter Masters race at the 2009 Tampa Bay “Beat the Heat.”