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Taking Health Into Their Own Hands

POSTED April 18, 2012 12:47 a.m.

In the hustle and bustle of everyday life, many people are looking for ways to quickly add healthy supplements to their diets to make up for when they can’t or don’t eat right. Some take a vitamin supplement, others take whole food supplements in the form of capsules, powders, or liquids.

The choices available for such products are mind-boggling, and it can’t be said that these products work for everyone, but some claim to feel better in various ways after taking the supplements. One key message from the USDA’s ChooseMyPlate.gov website, as well as the American Cancer Society is that half your plate should be comprised of vegetables and fruits. It’s recommended to eat at least five servings of vegetables and fruits per day and to eat them in all the various colors to get those all-important phytonutrients. And while there are a wide variety and a vast number of nutritional supplements on the market, a local one brings the fruits and vegetables to the forefront. Juice Plus is a line of supplements containing concentrated fruits and vegetables. Erin Pearson, a local independent distributor for Juice Plus, which is just one of several companies that offer supplements – said that a “long time ago,” her stepmom was part of Juice Plus and they always took the supplements as kids. As Pearson got older, she said she kind of forgot about the product. She noted that not long ago, however, one of her cousins became involved with Juice Plus because she was looking for a supplement for her son who has leukemia.

Pearson added that she’s been very involved with the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life and she’s always looking for ways to have more awareness about cancer prevention. She said that her cousin had been looking into the health benefits of juicing and had heard that it was good for cancer patients. She felt that the Juice Plus products were a way to get some of those benefits without the time commitment to actual juicing. The product webpage states that it contains 17 fruits, vegetables, and grains. Pearson added that the dehydrated foods are compressed into a vegetable capsule known as “garden blend” and a fruit capsule known as “orchard blend,” with no added sugars. There’s also a “vineyard blend,” soft chewables, and a powder.

“Once I started taking the supplements again, I felt better and I haven’t been sick,” Pearson said.

She reported that in the past she was diligent in taking vitamins and pre-natal vitamins when she was pregnant but vitamins typically left her feeling nauseous. She noted that she’s never felt nausea in taking the Juice Plus supplements; however, they aren’t vitamins but they are described as whole food supplements. They’re also not a substitute for eating actual fruits and vegetables.

“This kind of fills the gaps,” Pearson said. “It helps make up for when you don’t eat all the fruits and vegetables you’re supposed to… It’s a way to get fruits and vegetables into the diet because you can’t or don’t always eat right.”

Pearson said that she tries to eat right and exercise regularly but even when she hasn’t been exercising, she feels like she has more energy and a clearer head when she takes the supplements. She’s also noticed a downturn in how she feels when she hasn’t taken the supplements for a few days. Pearson has also gotten her husband, teenager and toddler on the supplement program. She said that her teen daughter hasn’t been sick when her friends are sick and she notices that she feels more focused throughout the day. She added that the person who was hard to convince to take anything was her husband. But he also reported a favorable outcome.

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