Doctor's Note

Check out these videos on other nutrition myths:
Meat Mythcrushers
The Problem With the Paleo Diet Argument
Debunking Egg Industry Myths
Eliminating 90% of Heart Disease Risk

Also check out Juice Plus+® Supplements.

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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. For more information about Juice Plus+®, see “Juice Plus+® Supplements.” Also, there are 1,449 other subjects covered in the rest of my videos–please feel free to explore them as well!

  • mbender

    Still confused about Juice Plus. Was this liver problem found in only one patient?

    • Frank Walton

      Curious why Dr. Greger would put such a short little blip here without commentary or context. WebMD says, “Over-the-counter pain relievers, like Nonprescription pain relievers such asacetaminophen (Tylenol, others), aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) andnaproxen (Aleve, others) can damage your liver, especially if taken frequently or combined with alcohol.” Something like this could cause a spike in liver enzymes as an adverse reaction.

      • Dogzilla

        Frank, first of all, why did you choose to be deceptive and fail to reveal that you are a National Marketing Director for Juice Plus? That’s an FTC violation. Secondly, why are you offering medical opinions when you have no medical training whatsoever? Lastly, how would you know if there are no other reported cases cases of hepatotoxicity? Your company is a conniving snakeoil pyramid scheme and would most likely throw adverse event reports straight into the trash bin. Their reputation for deception has already been firmly established.

        • Frank Walton

          Oh. Dogzilla, seems like you have come looking for me from another site! Okay, so who are you, hiding behind that screen name and what’s your agenda that compels you to obsessively attack JP+ on different internet sites?. I am perfectly free to offer health advice. I am not a doctor and I do not pretend to be one. Juice Plus+ is one of the most ethical, giving companies in the world. Thankfully, your constant attacks against JP+ hasn’t dented its steady growth. (2015 was the best in company history). We are inspiring healthier living worldwide while you live in a world of negativity and attacks.

  • Ebaker0460_98

    It was a case report.  Here is a link.  Why take juice when real fruit and vegetables are available? Here is the link to the article — plus

    • Ebaker0460_98

      Here is the link to the case report.

    • Juice Plus, or TouchStone Essentials are not juices. The answer to your question is cost. People use these products because they can’t afford to buy vegetables and fruits at the exhorbitant prices. Do a cost analysis and the answer is quite obvious.

      • I haven’t looked at the nutritional information yet, but unfortunately you could be right about the cost issue. Not that I promote this type of supplement at all, I believe in whole foods that you recognise when you buy or grow them. Although, it is difficult to say that cost is of no significance to those desperate to become healthy.

        • Diann Sapien

          Juice Plus is whole foods…

      • laguna

        Most vegetables are quite reasonable in price per pound compared to some small capsules prices. For the price of Juice Plus products one could buy a whole cart full of fruits and veggies. The fresh produce is 1000 times more healthy.

    • Frank Walton

      False dilemma. People take Juice Plus+ to bridge the gap or to augment a healthy diet.

      • Diann Sapien

        and I love my juice Plus! My whole family loves it!

  • will

    Interesting you should choose to highlight a case report of hepatotoxicity of a cancer patient while avoiding comment on the 24 published studies, many randomized and placebo controlled, which show benefits. I love your site, but you appear to be suffering a bias here. In particular I’d like to see you review the reduction in oxidative stress in athletes (three studies) and the apparent induction of superoxide dismutase (one study) found by the researchers in the Carolinas and Austria. As well, the inhibition of brachial artery constriction after a high fat meal and the arrested coronary artery calcification in hypertensives is intriguing and warrants comment.

    • Michael Greger M.D.

      If an unnecessary product has both potential benefits and risks (such as JuicePlus, or kombucha, or spirulina, or green tea supplements) I tend to err on the side of caution and encourage folks to stick to things that only boast benefits.. Why accept any unnecessary risk as all?

      • You’re comparing a product to others and using faulty logic to draw conclusions. You honestly believe that everyone is going to buy the “guilt by association” argument? I am not. Green tea supplements are useless and possibly risky according to recent studies. So what? Green tea is beneficial and anyone can afford it. You are NOT telling us what is risky about any ingredient in Juice Plus. Please do that in future videos or articles.

        Furthermore, how can you say it is an “unnecessary product” while a recent huge study in Europe was just released PROVING that people NEED SEVEN or more servings of vegetables and fruits to avoid the big diseases that are epidemics all around us. Please, Dr Greger. I believe as you do that food is medicine. What ingredient in Juice Plus or TouchStone Essentials (a “similar” product but with more transparent advertising, I believe) is risky?

        The answer to your last question is obvious. Personal budgets.

        • I agree with your budget argument. The study you mentioned regarding 7 or more servings was quite popular, I’m from the UK, but only a few days ago in July 2014, a reversal on the same study was published. It suggested that increasing to 7 or more from 5 made little measurable positive difference.

          Articles were posted on the BBC and Guardian websites, I haven’t checked anywhere else. It seems that recommendations change frequently :)

        • laguna

          A handful of pills doesnt equate to an increase in ones consumption of fruits and veggies.

      • Tracy

        Boast benefits? You mean like the prescription drugs you prescribe?

      • Frank Walton

        There are no real risks in taking Juice Plus+. If one is allergic to pineapple, etc. then they might want to stay away.

      • Frank Walton

        Juice Plus+ does not say it contains ONLY fruit and juice powder.

  • So tired of drug pushers

    You wanna trust the AMA???

  • Jan

    Have you investigated Univera products?

  • Charles GJ

    For such reasons we forget to look outside the good ole USA. for objective non biased information and knowledge. It would be interesting to compare Australian, European, etc with US research. Personally I still will consume aloe juice, Noni, Kava, and juice vegetables in addition to eating plant based and grass fed foods. It is the over-consumption of KlooAid that I am most concerned about here.

  • Les

    juice+ video is only 20 seconds, I suspect video is not working properly.

  • Les

    Any info on Univera products? They claim to be science based, better than all others.

  • tsilver

    what if you dont have access to a variety of fruits and vegetables, would juice plus then be a good option when traveling to places with limited produce options?

    • Lisa

      Absolutely! It is only concentrated fruits and vegetables. It bridges the gap as most people can’t east the variety of 9-13 servings per day. I have been taking for 5 years and love it. Dr. Katz at Yale is a big advocate as well as Dr. William Sears. Read the research and decide for yourself. There are 2 studies showing that it reduces systemic inflammation so not sure what happened with this one case of liver inflammation.

      • Toxins

        Juicing is not something Dr. Greger advocates.

        • Frank Walton

          You have NO EVIDENCE for your claim: “juice plus is not a health promoting supplement.” Have you not read any of the 34 clinical studies published in peer-reviewed journals??

      • MVC

        Hey Lisa, 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 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 “only concentrated fruits and vegetables.” 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.

      • What happened with that one case, may very well be overuse of Ibuprofen the woman was taking for cancer pain, which was probably withheld right after admission, and the liver enzymes were reduced. I don’t buy that one case study as evidence of anything, except the foolishness of people that draw conclusions from it. As scientists, we learned NOT to be.

        • fyi_im_me

          But the ingredients in JP absolutely couldn’t have caused it? Aren’t you being as presumptuous as the point you are criticizing? I am finding the most common way of defending JP is by being confrontational and rude and by inferring those that oppose are stupid.

    • Toxins

      As Dr. Greger has shared, juice plus is not a health promoting supplement.

      When traveling, dried fruits might be a better option.

      • Frank Walton

        Rami, if you had taken time to read all the published clinical research on JP+ you could not say “juice plus is not a health promoting supplement” It is health promoting with proven benefits.

  • Stuart Smith

    Are the powdered supergreen foods beneficial? Drinks like Pure Synergy and Sun warrior Ormus Supergreens?

  • jayceej

    I saw a video here recently about sniffing rosemary helping with memory. I’d like to see it again, but I can’t find it.

  • Frank Walton

    Dr. Greger really should know better. The so-called study was on ONE PERSON! There are over 1.2 million current customers taking Juice Plus+ and there is no other recorded instance of liver inflammation, so this is an anomaly so it is STATISTICALLY INVALID to project this onto the general population.

    • Dogzilla

      It’s a perfectly valid case report. No one is projecting it “onto the general population”. Why are you so callous as to dismiss it. You have a financial interest in the product as a National Marketing Director for Juice Plus, and it’s abhorrent that you did not admit this from the get-go. There is no surveillance system in place that would be able to detect adverse events in people who take Juice Plus. That’s why case reports like this are so important; they alert clinicians to the possible causal relationship between liver injury and taking your overpriced placebo.

  • Cynthia Sholes

    I have been disillusioned! However, not about Juice Plus but about NutritionFacts. As a PhD trained neuroscientist, I was excited to see your website and science based updates on nutrition thinking they were well researched and unbiased, until I saw this. This is something I happen to know a good deal about since for the last 20 years I have been taking Juice Plus and am familiar with (in other words, I have read) nearly 30 double blind, placebo controlled studies that have been published in peer reviewed journals on the Juice Plus fruit and vegetable concentrates. These clinical studies show tremendous benefits to human health. So you can see why I am now disillusioned about your reports given that you have reported on one poorly documented case study and have ignored the multiple well documented, well controlled experimental studies that have been done showing positive benefits of Juice Plus.

    Maybe you missed these studies because they are not marketing studies and they don’t have “Juice Plus” in the title (you will not find them on a pubmed search of Juice Plus). You CAN find them on Pubmed by searching “mixed fruit and vegetable concentrates”, or “encapsulated fruit and vegetable concentrates”, or “fruit and vegetable juice powders “. You will find out, as you read the methods and materials section of these studies, that most if not all of these studies the juice powders used in the studies are the Juice Plus Capsules.

    I commend the doctors in the study sited by the video for checking the patients liver function, but I don’t commend them for placing the blame on Juice Plus when the patient was on a regime of several medications which have liver damage as known side effects. Obviously this was not an experimental study, but I wonder what would have happened if the patient had first been on Juice Plus first and then taken the medication? I bet it is the medications, not the fruit and vegetable powders that are the actual culprit causing liver damage. But we will never know since this is just a case study. If I were reviewing the study I would ask several questions the first being “where did the Juice Plus come from that the woman was taking?” If it came from eBay or Amazon or anywhere other than the Juice Plus Company or one of their representatives then it isn’t Juice Plus and could be tainted. There are good reasons to give value to the well designed and highly controlled studies on Juice Plus that I referred to above. Please check them out as a whole before you make such sweeping conclusions.

    Having said all of this I want to be quite clear about who I am. Not only do I have a PhD from one of the top research institutions in the country, UCSF, but I have been willing to put my reputation on the line for the Juice Plus product and have been paying $50 a year to have the right to share about it and get wholesale prices on the products. The company does not pay me to be a spokesperson for them. I do however get a commission on their products I sell. This income is a portion of the income that sustains my family and pays for my own Juice Plus product. Am I biased, yes because I have read the studies and made an active decision to take the results and do something to improve my health and my life. I do not have to sell Juice Plus to make a living, however, I choose to because I have read the multi-subject studies mentioned above and believe that helping tens of thousands of people with Juice Plus (my goal) far out ways the increase risk of reversible liver damage changes in one patient who was on multiple medications with known side effects of liver damage.

    I would love to see truly balanced and unbiased reporting, I wish I could have found it here and I am very disappointed that I have not. Given this shoddy “update” on Juice Plus (and the other one too), I don’t feel I can trust any of your videos. I will be looking elsewhere.

    • Frank Walton

      Great post!

  • jclevine

    I know this is a considerably old video, but I’m wondering if any of the other ‘greens’ supplements out there are as bad as the Juice Plus+ ones. For example, I’ve seen the following 2 in quite a few health stores recently:

    VegeGreens –

    Greens+ –

    I obviously don’t intend these supplements to be my sole source of nutrition, but when I’m in a rush (or feeling particularly lazy) are these ok to supplement for 1 – 3 meals a week or is there some issue?

    Thanks! Hope someone sees this despite this being an old video.
    – Justin

  • jessica

    I have a customer who is recovering from breast cancer from years ago, she is still on immunosuppressants, is Juice Plus safe to take?

    • Frank Walton

      She needs to consult with her doctor to see what they say.

  • Rita

    Wow, if only prescription drugs were scrutinized this much.

  • Taylor Ann Norris

    I am curious if you have any thoughts or updates on Juice Plus products now. I just started taking the capsules today, and am worried about possible lead contamination and whether they are just more non-bioavailable vitamin pills.

    • Frank Walton

      Yes, they are safe to take. Look at the research on bioavailability.

      • Thea

        Frank Walton: I’ve been noticing your recent set of posts on NutritionFacts. Can you please clarify whether you are an employee with Juice Plus+ and/or sell the product in one capacity or another? If not now, have you done so in the past? Thank you.

  • bryan

    Good read.. i am in middle east and im looking for vitamins/supplements that i can tale until i came upon reading the benefits of juice plus. i will definitely try it. i actually created a facebook fan page to support it and share the benefits of having juice plus as part of a healthy diet . At an early age i was diagnosed with hypertension at age 18 until now i know that i am hypertensive because i feel dizzy at times. I am now 32 and i am worried that this type of illness will be a big problem when i get older. this is what they call a silent killer.

    Is juice plus safe for someone who has hypertension? how many capsules do i need to take?

    • Bryan,

      I want to suggest that the benefits of the products can be had with the intake of a diet high in veggies and some fruits For a similar high impact antioxidant mix, use your blender and make a smoothie our to veggies and some fruit. Want to knock the anti-oxidant level out of the park ? See:

      One of the principle problems with the use of the capsules is the lack of space for fiber. (see the labels) And I’d be remiss if I didn’t suggest that the price difference between real food and pills is astounding. The fiber is essential for a host of bodily processes and should not be excluded. I totally understand their marketing, I’m convinced that the intake of real foods will always trump the use of pills for substitution of gross nutrients. That’s not to say that some supplementation is not appropriate. Indeed for many diets supplementation such as the use of B-12 etc., is necessary.

      Dr. Alan Kadish Moderator for Dr. Greger