Doctor's Note

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  • Michael Greger M.D.

    Please feel free to post any ask-the-doctor type questions here in the comments section and I’d be happy to try to answer them. And check out the other videos on supplements and snake oil. Also, there are 1,449 other subjects covered in the rest of my videos–please feel free to explore them as well!

  • Marian Draugalis

    I came across your presentation to the Vegetarian Summerfest 2012 and really enjoyed it.  It’s nice to hear a doctor who believes in food as medicine.  We changed our diet to plant based last summer after watching the documentary Forks Over Knives.   It is the best decision we have ever made.

    Regarding this Juice Plus clip, I’m curious who the researchers are that are being referred to and would like to read the entire letter to the editor.   Would you please send the reference info. 


    Can you give more information about the benefits or harm of dehydrated juice supplements? I find it hard to believe that there is any phytonutrition left after the processing and encapsulation.

    • 65sohc

      If you go to the Juice Plus website they reference dozens of peer reviewed studies supporting their claims. To his credit Dr. Greger is not selling anything, as opposed to some of the other internet physicians such as Drs. Mercola, Sinatra, Whitaker, et. al. However, I do think he tends to view things through vegan, antisupplement eyes. The Juice Plus website presents a pretty comprehensive view of their product and I think it is worth looking at. A single review or anecdote to me is not compelling.

      • cuvtixo

        It’s pseudoscience mostly funded by the makers of Juice Plus. The only benefits are as overpriced vitamin pill. If you are really convinced of its nutritional value, consider buying Juice Festiv for 1/3 the price of Juice Plus.

        • Nancy

          So, by your comment you imply that only Juice Plus+ funds research? Every pharmaceutical drug that your doctor prescribes goes through the same clinical research funded by the company that is producing it. The Juice Plus research was carried out at respected universities and hospitals like MD Anderson Cancer Center, Brigham Young University, Vanderbilt University, and UCLA, among many others, then published in peer reviewed journals including the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Every study used the same Juice Plus product that customers receive.

          This is a long was away from pseudoscience. Now, show me the research on Juice Festiv.

          • Cristobaldelicia

            Maybe things have changed in the three years since that was posted, but I doubt it. Juice Festiv has the same ingredients as Juice Plus, which is mostly suspiciously cheap dehydrated plant material, anyways. Besides all this is the pyramid scheme selling structure. There’s the legal technicality that it involves an actual product, but everything else matches a pyramid scheme. Juice Festive is 1/3 the price, ONE THIRD. Studies or not, this suggests a rip-off by Juice Plus. And why don’t they have an easier to research unique name? It is unreasonably difficult to search for research with such a generic name, and not a being real ‘juice’ product at all.

      • Frank Walton

        This website solicits donations.

        • Thea

          Frank Walton: The website solicits donations, however, Dr. Greger does not make a penny from the website, his books, nor his speaking engagements. He donates all his time for these endeavors to educate the public on what the body of scientific evidence says about nutrition. If you want to learn more, review the FAQ page linked to at the bottom of this page.

          • Frank Walton

            That’s great that he has monetary support to live from other sources. (I like the vast majority of posts on the site.) However, it is unfair to falsely accuse those who market Juice Plus+ of scamming people out of greed to make money.

          • Thea

            Frank Walton: I’m just making sure the record is straight regarding this website. Whether that video you refer to is fair or not is a separate question, one I am not personally weighing in on either way at this time.
            While we are on the topic of making money and possible conflicts of interest: I know you feel very passionate about Juice Plus+. However, it would be appropriate if you made your monetary association with the company clear with each of your posts. That will keep things above board. Thank you.

          • Frank Walton

            Sure Thea. Do you have a policy about others making insulting, slanderous comments like guy hiding behind the handle “Zank Zalton”? S urely this site can rise above slander and ridicule.

          • Thea

            Frank Walton: Our rules for posting comments are clearly stated on the FAQ page. The link for the FAQ page can be found at the bottom of every page. While we do not preview comments before they are posted, the volunteer moderators review the posted comments to the best of our ability and delete the ones which are not appropriate as soon as we can. I am sorry you got the comment you just did and hope that future comments will be civil.

          • Bank Balton

            Hey, Thea! Not sure why my buddy Zank’s comment was removed, as it was factual – albeit accompanied by some sensational language. In his or her honor (I’ve never met Zank, even though we’ve been friends for years), I’ll stick to the facts:

            1). The claims Juice Plus + makes (which some would call “outlandish,” but I’m sticking to facts here) have been widely discredited again and again. For just one thorough, recent recap of their shortcomings, visit

            2). Our friend Frank has publicly declared his support for and involvement in Juice Plus +’s multi-level marketing empire. Multi-level marketing organizations (MLMs) are not illegal, but they have been shown to foster manipulative selling techniques. One might observe that the combination of MLMs and Juice Plus +’s patently false claims are essentially a powder keg with the fuse lit, waiting to explode in a shower of dangerous lies. Is a metaphor based in truth technically factual? I’ll leave that one to the philosophy majors.

            3). Frank (very publicly) repeats unproven claims in order to sell a product that enriches him personally. You can employ the transitive property of logic to reach appropriate conclusions.

            Thanks for being such a thoughtful and present moderator, @disqus_EXJURIXKLQ:disqus!

          • Thea

            Bank/Zank (I can see IP addresses): As I stated above, the rules for posting on this site are clear. You let the moderators decide who are credible posters and who are not. Your continued attack on Frank is inappropriate. Also, posting under different names while pretending to be different people is not appropriate.
            You have had your say about Juice Plus. If you want to discuss any of the other nutrition topics on this site, you are welcome to do so. Your participation on this page is over.

          • Zank Zalton

            @disqus_EXJURIXKLQ:disqus Sorry for not abiding the rules there. My friend’s post seemed appropriate, though. Not sure why it was removed. Please explain. Thanks!

          • Zank Zalton

            Wait, Frankie baby – it’s unfair? Really? But you lie and misrepresent the non-existent benefits of an overpriced placebo. That certainly sounds worthy of comment and condemnation…

          • Cristobaldelicia

            Those individuals who market Juice Plus themselves are VICTIMS, not scammers. That’s what makes this such a disreputable organization. Even if the product was as good as the claims (and many people give up while still sadly believing in the product.) The owners and executives are major scammers.

  • Ron

    Knowing that barley is very good. Is barley juiced powder also nutritious?
    By the way, thanks for all you do.

  • Kathleen

    I would be interested in knowing who the researchers were that you quote in this video, please!

    • Thea

      Kathleen: This may not answer your question, but I thought I would make sure that you saw the “Sources Cited” link above. If you click the link, a list of papers cited in the video appears. And when possible, Dr. Greger links to those videos. Hope that helps.

  • Donna

    your Juice Plus info is dated from 2009 & 2010. Do you still believe what you state in these videos?? it is not a vitamin supplement it is whole food?? and where is the article on the American journal of medicine about the liver inflammation? I tried to locate it and could not, please if you would, provide the link… thanks

    • Toxins

      You can read why the authors comment on the study consider juice plus a supplement

      • cuvtixo

        Thanks for the link!

      • The only conclusion that should be drawn from that peer review, is that further studies needs to be done to determine what changes in blood levels are “caused” by what, and that’s it. It asks questions, as it should. That is from 2003.

      • Frank Walton

        Juice Plus carries a nutrition label, not a supplement label, which has been reviewed by an FDA inspector.

    • cuvtixo

      Google “Juice Plus or Toxicity Plus” by

      Aung Naing, MD, Joann Aaron, MA, Razelle Kurzrock, MD at
      The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in the Americal Journal of Medicine

      • One woman with cancer, and taking other medications that could have caused her liver toxicity. How much Ibuprofen was she taking prior to admission for cancer treatment? She may have been popping them like candy to alleviate the cancer pain. Using one case study to draw conclusions is nearly as faulty as using anecdotal evidence. I am sure Dr Greger understands that.

      • Frank Walton

        How shallow to base a conclusion on 1 case, when Juice Plus+ is taken by 1.2 million people worldwide and such liver toxicity/inflammation has not been reported in a single other case! Pain killers can cause liver inflammation. Surely Dr. Greger understands the statistical concept of “confounding factors,” if present. I am very suspicious of this so-called study.

    • MVC

      Hey Donna, It’s quite misleading to say that JP+ is only concentrated fruits and vegetables. Go back to your JP+ Orchard and Garden blend labels and read them. Vitamin C, beta carotene, d-tocopherol, folic acid, enzymes, and acidophilus are all added back in after manufacturing. JP+ says that it is because the FDA requires that every label says the same thing, and they can’t guarantee that every bottle will contain exactly the same amount of nutrients (as you would not to be able to compare apple to apple, or cucumber to cucumber). Therefore, to standardize, they add nutrients the FDA requires they can ID by amount. Go to the Vineyard Blend label and see: L-arginine, L-carnitine, d-alpha tocopherol, calcium ascorbate, magnesium stearate, “natural enzyme blend,” coenzyme Q10, and folic acid. This may be just fine and all super healthy, but “it is not a vitamin supplement it is whole food” is incomplete at best. Also, though I have not read the studies myself, every independent review of the JP+ reports I’ve seen indicate that virtually all of them are inconclusive. I have been taking JP+ for over 5 years and honestly believe that it has helped keep me healthy. However, I am under no illusions that their marketing provides full disclosure.

  • Patti

    The naturopath I see trying to navigate the menopause highway found that most of my organs are stressed. My thyroid is stressed and the nutritionist in the naturopath’s office said that I could eat 1 Brazil nut daily in order to get adequate selenium. I’ve read elsewhere that 5 Brazil nuts are necessary to get sufficient selenium. I’ve started taking Nascent Iodine (2% strength) and need the selenium in order to work with iodine. Do you have any idea as to the combination of Brazil nuts and iodine? I appreciate your time.
    Patti, Atlanta, GA

  • If one uses sources to back up a claim, it behooves one to read them. The second study cited from the Journal of Nutrition, “supports” the use of Juice Plus. I quote: “In the absence of dietary modification, supplementation with a fruit and vegetable concentrate produced responses consistent with a reduction in CHD risk.”

    I’ve tallied our grocery bill many times in the recent past, and separated the vegetables and fruits costs. We have spent well over $200 per person, per month, during our attempts to consume 10 or more servings per day. Juice Plus is $46 per person per month.

    My liver enzymes are normal.

  • loves cats

    Dr Greger, I have been told that we should by no means eat raw food, especially green salads or fruits in the evening because this would damage our guts and produce harmful kinds of alcohol. I appreciate very much if you could comment on this.

    • Toxins

      That is an unsubstantiated myth. Don’t worry about that one!

      • loves cats

        Thanks a lot for this quick answer. It makes eating healthily much easier as we often eat late (8pm) and didn’t eat any salads or fruits then.

        • Toxins

          Timing meals and food combining (other then maximizing antioxidants and nutrient absorption) are 2 commonly spread myths. Eat as much salad as you like, dark greens are some of the healthiest veggies you can eat.

  • Ashwani Garg MD

    Dr. Greger, what about those green powder supplements such as Amazing Grass or other wheatgrass / barley grass or spirulina powders that claim to have a high ORAC value? What do you think of those?

  • Cynthia Sholes

    Really, you make a short video discrediting Juice Plus based on a single editorial comment, ignoring all of the other 30 or so well-document research papers on Juice Plus published in peer review journals? And I am supposed to trust you as an unbiased source of reporting what is in the literature. Not. Can we get some balanced reporting here?

  • David Marquez

    In terms of the nutritional value I’d like to offer an analysis. Take for example an apple (but this analysis would apply to almost any fruits). A medium apple weighs approximately 180 grams. If we removed all the water (approx 88%) and all the fiber (about 2% by weight) we would end up with approximately 18 grams of solids from the apple. 2 capsules of Juice Plus Orchard Blend (daily recommended amount) contain only 1.5 grams of powder. Compare that to the 18 grams of solids you get from just one apple. You would have to take 24 Juice Plus pills to get the amount of solids in one fruit! The conclusion is Juice Plus is giving you a negligible amount of nutrition. Even though it is concentrated in the sense that it’s dehydrated and defibered it is still a tiny amount compared to eating your recommended servings of fruits a day.

    • Hi David: I recently started taking JuicePlus, can you tell me if there are any current research that goes against it? I have a very busy schedule, I travel around the country with work and I really don’t have a lot of time to research properly. I don’t want to be taking something that isn’t doing any good and worse, something that may be doing harm. I follow a WFPB diet for approx 6 months now. I get beyond frustrated when I find something I think is good and start taking it and then find out it is BAD. I’m trying so hard :-(

      • Frank Walton

        Hi. I would look at all the research. The only non-helpful study was at Yale about metabolic syndrome. This had more to do with the premise of the hypothesis being tested.

  • Frank Walton

    Weak analysis. You cite only article that 2 researchers responded to one early study from the Univ. of Sydney. You need to update your info. The most recent research from Cambridge Univ. found 119 bio active polyphenols in Juice Plus+. (Yes, I am a rep for JP+, NOT because I am a sleezy scammer like this cheesy video insinuates, but because I believe in it because it has helped me when I had no expectations either way (I started taking it because my wife told me to :-)) plus I’ve seen it help others.
    Dr. Greger, since you pride yourself on reading ALL the published research journals, why not look at all of the research to be up-to-date.

  • Frank Walton

    “What the peer-reviewed scientific literature has to say about Juice Plus+® supplements.” Your subtitle is misleading. You cite only one article from 2003. This is not the entire body of literature in peer-reviewed journals on JP+. Surely you can do better than this.