[00:01:33] Podcast Sponsors
[00:04:15] Guest Introduction
[00:08:39] Is Juicing Healthy, And What Exactly Is a Cold-Pressed Juice?
[00:17:44] How Junaid Maintains Optimal Quality for His Juices
[00:22:23] Why Soil Is the Key Factor in A High-Quality Juice
[00:25:00] Podcast Sponsors
[00:27:41] cont. Why Soil Is the Key Factor in A High-Quality Juice
[00:29:57] Links Between Nutrient Deficiency and Poor Mental Health
[00:35:35] How Flavors of Juice Are Selected
[00:38:19] Materials Used for Bottling
[00:39:56] Rapid-Fire Questions
[00:42:09] Advice on Juice Fasting
[00:45:05] Effects of Juicing On the Microbiome
[00:57:34] How to Get Farmers Juice for Yourself
[00:59:58] Closing the Podcast
[01:01:16] End of Podcast
Ben: On this episode of the Ben Greenfield Fitness Podcast.
Junaid: The key aspect to understand with soil is its power. I began to notice within the first drink, well, I would have this rush of vitality and energy, my body felt like it was giving like a big hallelujah, like a, “Yes, I could feel amazing.” So, instead of understanding and honoring the natural processes, you can just throw these chemicals on them. The viciousness in terms of the cycle is that the more you pour these fertilizers and pesticides, the more and more you become dependent.
Ben: Health, performance, nutrition, longevity, ancestral living, biohacking, and much more. My name is Ben Greenfield. Welcome to the show.
Well, howdy, howdy, ho, everybody. As you listen to today's episode, do not fear. I have not become a vegan, but I have gotten a little bit more into juice. As a matter of fact, after recording the episode that you are about to hear, I decided to embark upon a five-day juice fast, which I'll be doing shortly. You can follow me on Instagram to see how that goes. Both my wife and I are doing a juice and charcoal fast. You'll learn more about why when you listen to today's episode. All the shownotes are at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice. And this is actually a really interesting episode. Got me excited about juicing.
Another thing that's getting me excited is as you may know, in 2017, I created a company called Kion, K-I-O-N, and it was designed to be a one-stop-shop for all the research-backed supplements, and functional foods, and formulations that I wanted to design to allow you to live this joyful and active life. Well, three years later, we have expanded more than I could have ever imagined. We have professional athletes all over the world using our products, health-conscious celebrities, people just from all corners loving the Kion products. And we have decided to do a full-on rebrand, all the same high quality research-backed formulations and the cleanest ingredients available to science and nature, but we just look a little cooler now.
So, if you want to see what the new rebrand looks like, you're really going to dig–I'm super excited, super excited. I just love to unveil behind the scenes for you guys what's going on over at Kion. So, go to getkion.com/bengreenfield. And if you go to getK-I-O-N.com/bengreenfield, you cannot only see the brand new rebrand, but you don't need a code, you just get a big fat discount for any of your first-time purchases from Kion. So, getkion.com/bengreenfield. And let me know what you think of the new rebrand. Go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice, which are the shownotes for today's episode. And let me know your thoughts. I personally think it turned out amazing.
This podcast is brought to you, by the way, by my friends at Joovv, who create these wonderful red and near-infrared light therapy devices that utilize not only pulsing technology, that's a very unique form of technology that they put into the red light panels to give your cells an extra boost of recovery with rejuvenating near-infrared light, but they have ambient mode to enhance your sleep with low-intensity light at night. They can simulate sunrise, sunset. And I use a Joovv, literally, every single day when I'm at home. I stand in front of it naked for like 20 minutes in the morning. I actually have two. I have one behind me and one in front of me, and it's one of the coolest parts of my day because I'm weird. Anyways, if you want to be weird like me, go to joovv.com/ben. They'll hook you up with an exclusive discount, J-O-O-V-V.com/ben, and you can just apply my code BEN to any qualifying order over at joovv.com/ben.
So, that's it. Let's go and talk about juice.
Well, I think I've probably said this before on other podcasts and in articles that I've never really been a fan of the whole juicing and the cold press juice trend for a lot of reasons, like most of the juices out there are just full of oodles of sugar that basically mainline fructose in your bloodstream with very little of the actual fiber or the water that you'd find in whole fruit. A lot of them are really, really overpriced compared to what you can make at home. Anybody who's walked out of a juicery with a $17 bottle of celery knows what I'm talking about. But then if you try to do the same thing at home, you get this huge mess, you get this huge cleanup situation, and I do not like to clean my juicer daily or deal with all the pulp and the waste that gets left over all over the kitchen counter.
And then, if you actually look at a lot of the produce that's used in these juices, it's like subpar fruit and vegetables. It's grown in degraded mineral-depleted soil. It's got GMO ingredients, or pesticides, or herbicides in it. And if it doesn't, a lot of times, just a ton of preservatives so it doesn't go bad super quick in your refrigerator destroying all your hard-earned overpriced juice. And so, in the past, and I've talked about this before on the show before, I've used some of these powders, some of the greens powders out there that I could just make my own juice with by putting that into like a Nalgene bottle and shaking it up. But it still doesn't really seem to mimic the flavor of like a true juice that you'd buy from a cold-pressed juicery or something like that.
And so, recently, I actually started drinking actual liquid juices again. And my wife and my kids have started to do the same. We're talking about some really interesting ingredients like performance greens, and athletic greens, and beet juice, and turmeric, and carrot digest. I've been doing like these cocktails at night. And literally, my wife just walked out of the house and she's been taking these juices with her when she's driving around town running errands. And my change in perspective on juicing and me actually being willing to have a refrigerator full of juice occurred after I had a phone call with my friend, Junaid. And he recently sent me some of his juices to try.
So, he's an entrepreneur. I've known him from way back in the day, but recently, he founded this company called Farmers Juice. And what they do is they deliver to your house these organic cold-pressed juices and then the little shots like the tiny, wellness shots like turmeric and ginger and stuff like that. And each of the juices has about one and a half pounds of produce in it, like cucumber, and ginger, and turmeric. And each of these juices has like one and a half pounds of produce in it, like ginger, and celery, and turmeric, and mint, and a bunch of different fresh herbs, but then adaptogens, and antioxidants, and mushrooms, and even like keto-friendly forms of juices.
So, Junaid developed this company, and also created this really cool technique called high-pressure processing that preserves the juice using cold pressure instead of heat, so the juices keep their nutrient value for like a month in your fridge but don't have a bunch of preservatives or other junk in them. And so, we're going to talk about this a little bit on today's show. We're going to take a deep dive into all things juicing. But basically, Junaid is the man when it comes to us being able to learn a lot more about juicing, what's good, what's bad, what you need to worry about, what you need to look for. And I was really happy to have connected with him on this a couple of months ago. So, Junaid, welcome to the show, man.
Junaid: Thanks so much for having me, Ben. Stoked to be here.
Ben: And you know what, I should check because I know you and I have hung out a few times, and it's possible that I've just been butchering it forever. But do you actually pronounce your name Junaid?
Junaid: Yes. It's Junaid or Junaid, but both works. I also go by Jay.
Ben: But it's spelled J-U-N-A-I-D?
Ben: Junaid. How come you didn't call your company Junaid Juice?
Junaid: Because of humility, and try to focus on the farmers at the actual product.
Ben: You're not a narcissistic entrepreneur.
Junaid: I've been humbled through the years and it's an important value.
Ben: Yeah. I actually want to talk about the farmers here in a little bit, but I think just at the risk of sounding kind of stupid because I actually don't know myself. What exactly is the definition of a cold-pressed juice? What's that even mean?
Junaid: That's a great question. Cold-pressed juicing is a simple yet powerful idea. So, for any vegetable, there are two fundamental building blocks. There's the liquid, and then there's the solid. So, in other words, there's the juice, which is the liquid, and there's the pulp, which is the solid. So, say, for example–
Ben: Right. The cold being like all the messy stuff that winds up on your counter when you're making your juice from it like a home juicer?
Junaid: Exactly. And each vegetable–so, say, for example, celery, cucumber, or carrot. In particular, those three vegetables, they have 70% to 95% is just liquid and juice. So, the liquid portion or the juice component of a vegetable, it has a plethora of micronutrients, enzymes, minerals, antioxidants, essential phytonutrients. So, what cold-pressed juicing does, the concept what it is, it takes roughly a pound to 1.5 pounds of produce, or organic produce, could be organic or non-organic. We use organic. So, it could be dandelion greens, dino kale, celery, cucumber, ginger, turmeric, lemon, mint, basil, much more. And you take this 1.5 pounds of produce and you squeeze it. So, you separate the liquid from the solid. You do this in a cold environment. And cold is important so the nutrients don't degrade. It actually preserves the nutrient intake with it.
Ben: Right. So, you're not introducing heat, but oxygen, because oxygen is another thing that I know can cause oxidation.
Ben: I had a podcast a long time ago where I talked about how when I make a smoothie, I make it with ice, but then I'll add a lot of vitamin C, like the squeeze of a lemon to keep some of the oxidation at bay when I make it. And so, when you're using like these big hydraulic presses for cold-pressed juice, you're not producing heat, but then they're also somehow kept clean of oxygen?
Junaid: Exactly, exactly.
Junaid: It's so cold. When you enter the facility, you actually have to wear this winter cold jacket as if it's like the coldest winter in Boston. So, that's the setup that we have. When you separate the liquid from the solid, what you end up, the end result is a highly, highly concentrated potent beverage of dino kale, celery, ginger, all the goodies including some of the functional ingredients that you referred to. And because of this high potency in terms of the plant-based nutrition that you're putting into your body, you get this jolt of essential nutrients, micronutrients, vitamins, minerals. And we also use a few different functional ingredients like lion's mane, matcha, apple cider vinegar. And it's a hack in terms of your nutritional edge to get your daily recommended optimal nutrients from vegetables in 30 seconds a day by just drinking a juice. And to really put into context, 1 to 1.5 pounds of produce, if you were to sit down and actually eat it, it would be five large plates of vegetables of salad.
Ben: Yeah, that's true. Sorry to interrupt, but I mean, a lot of people would say, “Well, that's how you keep yourself from overeating. That's how you keep yourself from attacking the gut with way too much fiber. That's how you would keep, for example, your blood sugar from becoming dysregulated.” And I think to a certain extent, that's true, like anybody knows, if you drink your food, you tend not to get full quite as quickly. Yet at the same time, like I've been tracking using my CGM because I test everything, with these juices in particular, these farmers juices that you're making, I think, and you can correct me if I'm wrong, I think the main differentiating characteristic, and the reason I'm not seeing the blood sugar spike, or like the post-juice appetite spike that I seem to get with a lot of these juices, is it's not like 8 pounds of apple and 2 pounds of pear and a bunch of fructose that you're mainlining into your bloodstream. They have like, I don't know, what's the average on, like 80, 100 calories, something like that? Like, it's mostly vegetables.
Junaid: Exactly. You hit it on the mark. We've spent quite a considerable amount of time to actually develop the world's first line of ketogenic cold-pressed juices and wellness shots, and each juice has roughly 9 to 11 grams of carbs that come, but we don't use any fruit. And instead of sweetening it, typically, the easy way to do it is just like put tons of apple juice or pineapple juice. What we do is we use a creative mix of basil, mint, lemon, ginger, turmeric, that actually creates this wholesome nourishing lift to your taste buds.
And there are a lot of keto products, like I've been keto for a few years. I cycle in and out as needed. And my personal priority when creating this ketogenic line of green juices was we want to make sure that we serve people who are getting into ketosis. So, the sort of pre-ketosis phase. And while you're in ketosis, you want to make sure that you don't kick you out and ruin all the hard work that you've put in over the many months. So, I'm so happy to hear that you've been tracking through a CGM, and it's actually not spiking your glucose. That's amazing news.
Ben: Not at all, actually. I'm even using it. So, for a long time, and I still do this sometimes. I'll use kefir or bone broth as the base for my morning smoothie. And a lot of times, I've just been dumping a bottle of this in as my base just for a little added nutrient density. And same thing, zero spike in blood sugar, which I've never seen before from juices. And when you first sent me a bunch to try, I actually, when I was looking at them, at first, I thought they did have fruit in them because I'd see like apple, and then it really was apple cider vinegar, for example. That's one that you have in there. But I mean, the performance greens, it's lion's mane, cucumber, celery, lemon, ginger, turmeric, basil, mint, with like a little extra turmeric in it. And then, you've got some that are a little bit more…I guess you would consider them to be something that could be more fruit-forward or sweeter, and these are ones that my kids really like. Is it the carrot one, carrot digest, carrot jicama, lemon, ginger, and turmeric, I think?
Ben: And then, the earthy one's really good, too. I think the earthy one's the only one that actually has fruit in it, right, the carrot, orange, apple, pineapple, beet one?
Junaid: Correct, correct. Yes.
Ben: And that one, I'll be honest with you, that's the one that I don't drink too much of unless it's like pre-workout or post-workout just for the blood flow effect, just because it does have a little bit of the extra sugar in it. But yeah. So, you've got this really cool lineup, which I was excited about when we talked. But then you also told me about something I wasn't familiar with. I think you called it HPP, which is kind of like a second part of the cold processing. What's the HPP part of this?
Junaid: Yeah. That's a great question. So, if you take the step back in terms of what's the process, it all starts from the farm. And when we get the highest quality produce by working with a community of farmers, we juice it in this peak nutrient density zone, which we can unpack in a little bit. And then, after you've juiced it, as soon as you juice it, the nutrients will begin to degrade, even at home. So, for example, the juice that you have, if you juice at home in the morning, it's going to actually taste different. You'll notice the difference the next day, or even the same day later in the evening if you juice it in the morning. So, there's this breakthrough innovative technology called HPP, which introduces cold water and high pressure, and it's this machine that's as big as the size of a yellow school bus. So, if you were to visualize the yellow school bus, you put a juice bottle in there, and then you make sure–
Ben: I don't know, man. I was homeschooled. You'll have to use a different analogy for me.
Junaid: So, as big as your backyard garden.
Ben: Okay. Pretty big. Got it.
Junaid: It's pretty sizable. And you introduce cold water and enough pressure that the juice bottle can go to the bottom of the ocean. So, it's that much pressure. So, the physics and the chemistry of introducing cold water in a high pressured controlled setup, it neutralizes all the negative bacteria and pathogens that would degrade a juice, if you were to juice at home, or even in a juice shop, and it makes the nutritional integrity and the freshness stay fully intact for up to 30 days. So, that is the revolutionary breakthrough that we combine not only the highest quality ingredients through working with farmers, juice it in and the nutrient-dense peak zone, but we HPP it the same day. There's no trucking to another different facility in another city. We're very, very sensitive in terms of the process to make sure there's a minimal nutrient degradation.
Ben: Okay. Got it. So, how do you actually know when it's at peak nutrient density to be able to bottle it at that point?
Junaid: At any juice company starting out, you have to be mindful in terms of the sourcing, where you source from. Typically speaking, non-organic, why it's so popular and why it's everywhere, it's because it's 30% cheaper, roughly 30% cheaper, depending on what state you are in terms of the cost. What we decided to do, what I personally decided to do, a big motivation on why we called it Farmers Juice is I've spent the last couple years driving around California and meeting different farms and farmers, and getting to know intimately what is their sourcing, what is their certifications. So, what we do is we've created this network, this community of an alliance of different family farms. And some of these family farms are completely independent.
So, they've been stewards of their land for over 100 years. And the quality of water that they give to the soil is the same quality water that they give to their own children. So, with this high quality of soil, particularly, what we do is we make sure that from the very get-go, every single vegetable and fruit passes the USDA organic bar, which means that there's no pesticides, there's no organic fertilizers. And we actually make sure that all of the produce, all the farming practices enhance soil fertility, they protect wildlife, they actually promote biodiversity. And in this sort of like vetting process, what we've had to do is make sure that there's no cutting the corners.
And we actually, through a selection process, most produce, when it ends up in the grocery store, it has been in a truck for two to three weeks. So, the peak nutrient density zone is right when it's getting shipped up from the farm. So, what we do is we've set up our facility very, very close to the farmers. So, it's actually the middle of California in sort of like a random piece of land. And we work with the knowledge, the ancestral knowledge of each farmer, because each farmer is knowledgeable based on hundreds of harvests over 50 to 100 years. So, what we work with is the lifecycle of each plant. So, there's the seed, and all the way to the degradation. And you're familiar as soon as you get a kale, for example, from the grocery store, you have about three or four days roughly speaking before it degrades.
So, the lifecycle of a plant, there's these peak zones where you just work with farmers and trust their experience and ancestral knowledge to juice it right then and there. And we have an advantage because a lot of the non-aesthetic produce that would not sell in a Whole Foods or a Target because it just doesn't look good, we use a lot of those to reduce the cost of a juice–
Ben: Right. The ugly stuff, which it's kind of weird because arguably, the ugly stuff is–I've talked about this before on other shows, and there's a really good book about this by–I think it's Jo Robinson called “Eating On the Wild Side.” The ugly misshapen produce that's not big and fluffy and full of sugar tends to be actually higher in antioxidants and natural–something like the natural plant defense mechanisms that allow you to get a little bit more of this hormetic effect and a little bit more of an antioxidant intake. So, it is interesting that you're using some of the uglier stuff.
Junaid: “Eating On the Wild Side.” I'm going to check that out.
Ben: Yeah. It's a good book.
Junaid: It's a good read for me. Thank you. It's a great advantage as an entrepreneur from an economic perspective because we want to, A, support the farmers. That's number one because providing sustainable purchasing for them helps them to make more long-term decisions and not cut corners in terms of their harvest by introducing pesticides or going from organic back to non-organic. So, that's one of the key things. But the other key thing is all this non-aesthetic produce goes waste, just it doesn't get used, or it goes into compost, which is a low-value use of such high-quality produce. So, a big reason how we can reduce the cost of a high-quality organic juice that you would get at a very high-end juice bar, which would cost $12 where our price is $5.99 per organic cold press juice. So, that's one of the key economic advantages that actually just happens when you begin to get to know the farmers, get to know the land. It was kind of this unexpected, surprising positive discovery.
Ben: Now, with the soil degradation, do you guys do any soil analysis or you just–do you already know from the way the farmer is operating that the soil hasn't been degraded over time? Can you comment on just what you know regarding dirt versus soil?
Junaid: To step back, most folks may think of soil just as dirt. And the key question is like, “Why should I even care about thinking about soil?” And you can think of soil as the living skin of the earth. It gives plants the nutrients it needs to grow. And Michael Pollan said, “You're not what you eat, you're what your plants eat.” So, your plants eat the microorganisms in the soil. And that same principle is applied–most people are very familiar at this point with grass-fed meat. So, for example, you're not just what you eat in terms of the direct relationship with the cow that you eat, you're what the cow eats its environment. So, there's a relationship. If you have a burger from a factory farm versus a Belcampo burger, you're going to feel very differently.
So, our soils, it's very much alive. And in every handful of soil, there's more organisms that have lived in the history of the entire planet Earth in just one handful of healthy soil. And our soil is the backbone of our food production. Ninety-five percent of all food production by the year 2060 will be coming from soil. So, taking care of the microbes in the soil is critical, not only for soil health, but for human health. The key aspect to understand with soil is its power to fight climate change. So, healthy soil absorbs carbon, and unhealthy soil actually releases carbon. And when carbon gets in the atmosphere, it not only causes climate disruption, but it just causes massive economic failures in terms of inefficiencies in the agricultural system that makes these farmers more reliant on pesticides and fertilizers to cut the corners and make short-term decisions.
So, spring the soil with toxic chemicals. So, in other words, non-organic produce kills the very microbes that we need to give us health, and pull carbon from the atmosphere, and win this battle for humanity. When Mark Hyman said, it was–I love this quote. He said, “The depletion of our soils causes our vegetables to have up to 50% less minerals and nutrients.”
Ben: Hey, I want to interrupt today's show. I know I'm probably getting your taste buds going talking about juice, but there's way more than just juice that you can get your hands on, dark chocolate, raw nuts, bone broth, anything keto, paleo, gluten-free, vegan, non-GMO, Fair Trade Certified, BPA-free, you name it, ethical meat, sustainable seafood, clean wine, no restrictions on space in a grocery store, no forced mask-wearing as you're wandering through the aisles because you can do this all online. It's called Thrive Market. Thrive Market's an online membership-based market on a mission to make healthy living easy and affordable for everyone.
When I first discovered Thrive Market, it was when I wanted to buy really good BPA-free organic coconut milk and I couldn't find it anywhere. Found it at Thrive Market. And since then, oh my gosh, it's wonderful to be able to shop for healthy organic groceries that aren't overpriced. As a matter of fact, any orders over $49 get shipped free, saving you a ton of time driving around to the grocery store. The other cool thing is that because it's the membership that comes down to like less than five bucks a month, 12-month membership, it allows you to save a ton. It's kind of like Costco met Whole Foods and had a baby. That's pretty much what Thrive Market is. So, what I'm going to give you is not only access to any membership you want there, but it's risk-free. You get your first 30 days to determine if Thrive Market's right for you. And I'm going to give you a free gift up to 24 bucks in value if you join Thrive Market today. Go to thrivemarket.com/ben. That's thrivemarket.com/ben. May I recommend to you their 12-month membership. You will not be sorry.
This podcast is also brought to you by my friends at Vuori. Vuori is a clothing brand. They make athletic gear, but their athletic gear actually–I mean, you could wear it to a party, you could wear it to the beach, you could wear it out with your friends at a restaurant, it doesn't matter. But you can also wear it to yoga, to spinning, to weight training, you name it. It's comfortable, but the designs look great. It doesn't look or feel like traditional athletic gear. And 90% of the time when you see me working out, or on Instagram, or whatever, I'm decked out in my Vuori clothing. But it's spelled really weird. I don't know why they did this, but they did. It's fancy. Vuori, V-U-O-R-I. V-U-O-R-I is how you spell it. And you go to vuoriclothing.com/ben. That's V-U-O-R-Iclothing.com/ben. That'll get you a big fat 25% discount at checkout. Vuoriclothing.com/ben gets you a 25% at checkout at vuoriclothing.com/ben.
Yeah, it's pretty nuts. It's I think one of the reasons that magnesium, for example, is–probably magnesium potassium are the two biggest deficiencies that I see in people's minerals. And I did a big podcast on mineral analysis with Barton Scott. I'll link to it in the shownotes. By the way, the shownotes for everything you guys are hearing, you just go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice. That's BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice. I'm assuming you all know how to spell juice. And I'll put a link to that podcast with Barton Scott where we talked about minerals. But I think a huge part of it, and we touched on that in that show, is due to mineral depletion of the soil. Thus, us consuming produce that's mineral depleted. And another really good book about this, I don't know if you've read this book, Junaid, by Gabe Brown called “Dirt to Soil.” Have you seen that one?
Junaid: No, I have not.
Ben: Okay. Fantastic book. It's one of the better treatises of the big issue with the way that we farm in the U.S. in terms of herbicides, insecticide, synthetic fertilizers, et cetera. And it's the story of this farmer who switched to no-till planting, and then he started planting like diverse cover crop mixes and changes grazing practices to more of like the rotational grazing. And the guy that wrote the book, he has like a 5,000-acre ranch where he's doing pastured laying hands and broilers, and pastured pork, and grass-fed and grass-finished beef, and lamb. But a big part of it is he literally just like, over the process of 20 years, completely reinvented the topsoil of his entire farm to be like this living biologically-rich microbe-rich soil. And anyone who has like a backyard garden, who is really–like our family has–and yes, I may not know how big a school bus is, but I can tell you, we've got our eight raised garden beds that we do a ton of composting, a ton of soil turnover, a ton of small crop rotation in, and that soil is just, it's rich, it's diverse, it's moist, it's like this living compound. It's crazy compared to dirt.
Junaid: It's crazy. There's an example, there was a study done that it takes eight oranges from today, eight full oranges to match the vitamin A quality of one orange from our grandparent's generation.
Ben: Geez. It's nuts, it's nuts. Now, a big part of this, too, and I don't know how much it is the mineral repletion or the nutrient repletion, or what it has to do with this, but I know that you actually yourself had some depression issues. And you'd been filming in on this, and you actually were finding some links between some of these nutrient mineral deficiencies and mental health and wound up actually using juice as a way, not some gimmicky, but as one way of healing yourself from depression. Can you get into that story?
Junaid: Yes, yes. It's a personal story. To wind back, I'm 30 years old today. And around 10 years ago, I was in college and I was raised by an Indian mother that gave me the most amazing meals and put her love and her energy into each meal. But by the time I came to college, I started getting on the standard American diet. I started developing anxiety and depression. I just thought this was part of growing up. It's part of being an adult. I didn't make the link and the connection between my mental health and my diet going out of whack. And I was sitting in my senior year when all my friends had job offers and were creating wonderful plans for their life. And I went to 50 job interviews, non-stop nos, and it was because my cognitive performance was down and my GPA was not too high.
I was sitting there. I was like, “If no one's going to hire me, it looks like I have to hire myself.” So, that was the aha moment. They say necessity is the mother of invention. So, that was for me out of necessity, I had to become an entrepreneur. It wasn't a choice. I had to do it to move forward. So, I started my first company when I was 20, and then fast forward seven years, through blood, sweat, and tears, and a lot of the self-doubt journeys, kind of going through the entrepreneurial journey, I came to a point in roughly 2016, 2017 where I had this outer material security and “riches.” But to speak truthfully, my inner life was bankrupt. I had a low sense of psychological well-being, my inner peace was missing, I still suffered from the anxiety and the depression except I had this non-stop demands from work and I was burnt out. And I was like I thought I had the dream, I had the American dream. I became an independent entrepreneur, like where's my well-being?
So, I did this radical experiment and I took six months off, another privilege to do that at the time, and I just focused on what does it take to become a healthy human and just focus on the fundamental habits and the building blocks. So, I started meditating every day. I started being very mindful. That's when I started getting into ketosis. I lost 20 pounds. I began fasting. I began to just nurture every single life department with love, began to focus on my social relationships. And in this journey, came across cold-pressed juicing. I was in Austin, living at the time, and I came across this juice shop and I was like, “Oh, my gosh, this guy had the dreads and he knew the farms that he sourced from.” And I custom-made ketogenic cold-pressed juices every day. And it's embarrassing, I used to pay like $10 to $14 per juice.
I began to notice within the first drink, I would have this rush of vitality and energy, cognitive clarity, like my body felt like it was giving like a big hallelujah, like a yes, I felt amazing. And I began to drink two a day, and a lot of the anxiety and the depressive symptoms–I was very sensitive. I was monitoring everything and it began to go away. So, three or four months in, I began to feel amazing, and it always stuck with me, that four-month chapter where I juiced every day. I just continued juicing, but that radical transformation, I was like, it was because of juicing. I knew it worked. I know there's a lot of crappy juices out there. But fast forward when I was looking to start my next company, I was like, “Juicing is amazing. However, I don't want to spend $4,000, $5,000 on just juice. I want to make this affordable. Can we actually work with the farmers? Can we actually get the cost down? Can we deliver this nationwide and can we begin to actually champion the next generation of agriculture, with regenerative agriculture, which is beyond organic that can sequester carbon? And that was the original inspiration and vision of taking pain to purpose.
Ben: That's a really cool story. And I think that a big part of it probably does have to do with nutrient repletion. I mean, obviously, we know there's a link between depression, and also everything from inflammation, high intake of vegetable oils, omega-3 fatty acid deficits, probably a lot of the other stuff that occurred when you switched out your diet. But that's super interesting that juicing wound up being a part of this. And so, how long has it been since you actually formed the company?
Junaid: It's been around two years. It's around two years.
Ben: Okay. Got it. So, you got these organic farmers, you've got your cold-pressed juice, you have your HPP processing, so you don't have to add a bunch of preservatives. And then, the actual flavors of these juices–who's coming up with the flavors? Because you guys have all these different boxes with varieties of–I mean, a whole bunch of different flavors. I mean, I named off a few of them, but folks can go to the website. I'll link to it in the shownotes at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice. But is it just you as a one-man show running this, or do you have like a flavor team, or how exactly is that running?
Junaid: Yeah. It's with close guidance with a couple nutritionists that are really introducing that I've been doing this for 20 years, and my own self-experimentation with making a variety, hundreds of juices. And what we do is we keep it fresh. So, we try to introduce new recipes every couple months and constantly tweaking it. So, if you have any feedback, if you're listening, if you email [email protected], I read every single email. If you have any notes of improvement, our job is here to serve you. So, that's a big part of the magic formula is we just listen to everybody's flavor profiles. The first five seconds when somebody has a juice, they have these raw reactions, like, “Oh, my gosh, this tastes amazing.” And if it's not so good, they're like, “Actually, there's a little too much apple cider vinegar. Let's dial it down because I like apple cider, but it's too much. Let's balance out the flavor.” So, it's a combination, to answer your question, of the nutritionist who are juicers, myself, and just constant listening to our customers.
Ben: Well, I've got a little bit of feedback for you. First of all, you got to have one that's got a little bit of a cucumber vodka in it because, like I mentioned, I've actually been making cocktails with your juices. Like I'll take, for example, one's called the–I think it's called Focus Fuel, I believe is–what's in the Focus Fuel? I forget. I think it has lion's mane in there.
Junaid: The focus greens is the one that you're referring to. It has a matcha, and it has a cucumber, and it has a basil mint, ginger, lemon, extra mint, and lime.
Ben: Okay. Got it. Yeah. No, it's not that one. It's a little shot because you guys do like the tinier shots, I think.
Junaid: Oh, yes, yes. The tiny shot that has fennel, lemon, lemongrass, jalapeno, matcha, and a tiny bit of apple, very tiny bit.
Ben: Yeah. That one, I've been pouring over ice and putting a shot of cucumber vodka in at night as a cocktail and it's amazing. So, I don't know if you knew this, but you could get in the cocktail business, too. They work really well as mixers, which is amazing, these little shots. I've also found that with the shots because there's just so much in there, you got to give them a really, really good shake because I like to get all the goodness out of there. But typically, I'll shake it up really well, pour it into a glass because I like to drink out of glass rather than the bottle, and then I will at that point have–like clear it out a little bit. I'll put some water in there and drink a little bit of the extra goodness out of the bottom of the shot just because I don't want to waste any of it. But those little shots are pretty amazing just as like cocktail mixers, or even if you don't want to drink a full bottle of juice.
Now, that leads me to something else I wanted to ask you about. Do you pay attention to packaging at all? I mean, a lot of people are going to ask, well, I only drink out of glass. I'm concerned about BPA, or phytoestrogens, or things you might find in the plastic. What are you actually using for your materials for bottling?
Junaid: So, there's an option to use single-use plastic, which what most companies use. It could be BPA, it could be not. We use only 100% recycled materials in terms of our plastic. And the key thing here is if you recycle after you've had a juice, or if you reuse it for your [00:38:52] _____ smoothies, but if you choose to recycle, it actually goes back into the system. And then, we go collect it from–we purchase it from one of these large recycling plants. So, the best solution is to make sure that as a company, we, A, use recycled materials, but B, encourage our customers to recycle. And we're also looking into actually a recycling program to introduce later this year where we can actually have sort of a package to pick up all the recycled bottles. And in case you live in an area where–I don't know if my city has the infrastructure to actually recycle these bottles. So, we're very, very hypersensitive in terms of doing the highest good for the planet.
Ben: Okay. Got it. So, when I get these juices, because I've got a couple boxes of them now sent to my house, they arrive, they're in kind of like this cooler with the recyclable packaging material. And then, I transfer them directly into the fridge. But I wanted to ask you, like, they're good for about 30 days, right, in the fridge?
Ben: Okay. So, could I theoretically freeze them? Does freezing influence at all like the nutrients? Would they stay good in the freezer? Would the bottles explode? Is anybody freezing these things?
Junaid: You can freeze them if you'd like. It's not necessary. However, if you do freeze them, you just have to give it enough time to thaw out in the fridge. Or if you leave it out of the fridge, if you leave it out and it gets warm, you just got to watch it in case it gets warm. So, it's temperature sensitive. So, generally speaking, keeping it cool roughly around 41 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal time to drink it.
Ben: Okay. Got it, got it. And then, in terms of delivery, are you guys just in the USA? Are you doing USA, Canada, or where exactly are you delivering to?
Junaid: We deliver to all the 48 states in the U.S., but we don't deliver outside of the U.S. at the moment. We're looking into Canada probably later this year or early next year. And we don't serve Hawaii and Alaska at the moment, but that may change after COVID.
Ben: Got it. And you can do a subscription or just a single purchase of a box of the wellness shots, or a box of the juices, or a mix-and-match variety box, or whatever you like, right?
Junaid: Correct, correct.
Ben: Okay. Got it. So, I've got a few other questions for you. And by the way, you almost derailed me when you brought up Belcampo burgers because, oh, my goodness, that's like my treat when I go to L.A. I think it's called their double fast burger. It's got like two grass-fed, grass-finished beef patties, and then they do like the onions, and the ketchup, and the mustard. But then I get those with the–I think it's the tallow fries. And if anybody is going through L.A. and you get a chance to stop by Belcampo for a burger, probably go pretty well with a juice. Are you vegan, Junaid?
Junaid: I'm not, no. I had Belcampo last week.
Ben: Gotcha. Yeah.
Junaid: [00:41:46] _____. Fantastic.
Ben: It's kind of funny because if you literally go open my fridge right now, it's a bunch of cooked up bone-in pork loin chops from Belcampo, some trout and some fish, and then just like–I think about 20 bottles of your juice and your wellness shots. So, I'm vegan carnivore right now with the juices.
Okay. So, the other question that I had, because my wife and I were talking about this last night and we're thinking about doing it, but I wanted to get your take on this, and if you've had customers do it or if you've done it yourself. We were thinking about targeting a five-day span sometime in February and doing an actual juice fast where all we drink are the Farmers Juice juices. For me, I'm a big old boy. I'd probably do like–I would guess I'd probably go through about six or seven juices a day just because again, they're not super calorically dense or fruit-forward. But if you had any customers, have you yourself experimented with juice fasting at all?
Junaid: Yes. Juice fasting is not something that we explicitly market or is something that–but you could easily do that with any of our boxes. So, we have had customers do like a one-day cleanse, a three-day cleanse, or a five-day cleanse. And depending on how keen you are in terms of the green juices, that is the default that you can use. So, the green's only box has four to five of our most popular ketogenic options. So, drinking six, seven a day is a great option. However, I personally really enjoy our orange immunity juice, which has oranges from a fourth-generation family farm in Santa Barbara, some of the most amazing oranges, and also Peruvian ginger. And that if you drink greens, greens, greens all day, it's nice to I think mix it up a little bit. So, if you choose to have an inclination outside of the green juices, the Mostly Greens Box is what I would recommend for a cleanse.
Ben: It's called the Mostly Greens Box?
Junaid: Correct, yeah. And that has all of our green juices, has the earthy rich, which is a beet focused one, carrot digest with a carrot focused one, and the orange immunity, which has the orange immunity one. And then, every three months or so, we're going to start introducing new flavors. So, when the summer comes around, California watermelons are on point, which is amazing for your hydration. So, we're also going to introduce that then.
Ben: My kids love watermelon juice. That's amazing for nitric oxide, too. It's almost like Viagra in a bottle. My wife and I got COVID, and I wanted to make sure that my kids–this happened like six days ago. We both tested positive for COVID. And so, I put all the–not the ginger immunity. What's the other immunity one you were just talking about, orange?
Junaid: We have orange immunity as juice.
Ben: Yeah. So, orange immunity and then the ginger immunity, which is the ginger and the lemon, the turmeric. I think a little cayenne's in there, too, and maybe some–is there like a piperine or a black peppercorn for the turmeric absorption?
Ben: Yeah. So, I literally just like put a bunch of those in the corner of the fridge and told my kids, “Drink at least one of the ginger immunity shots a day and one of the orange immunity shots a day,” just to get their Whole Foods vitamin C up, and they punish the juices. I mean, kids absolutely love these things, too, which is great because they're not spiking their blood sugar with juices, but they're getting a ton of these nutrients just mainlined in their bloodstream.
Junaid: Yeah. That's such a good point with kids. I think it's a duty of care to your own body in a form of self-care, but also in addition for the entire family. And I came across this sort of survey, after Santa Claus, the most recognizable character among 96% of children was Ronald McDonald. And part of the mission for us is to create this healthy alternative to sugary drinks that are low carb. And even if it is sugar, it's low sugar and it's coming just from Santa Barbara-based oranges or like beets from the central valley of California. Kids, in general, are high energy and they crave–not all. Some of them do crave sugar. If you do it in moderate doses, that's part of our mission, too. So, just create a healthy alternative for kids and it's totally safe to have even for kids, as well as for pregnant women because all of our juices are HPP'd. But for pregnant women, I do want to say consult your medical doctor and professional before making a decision because every mother's journey is very unique.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. One thing that I actually wanted to do if I wind up doing this as a juice fast was to assess lipid peroxidation because you can get lipid peroxidation markers now. There's one called malondialdehyde or MDA. And a lot of times, they'll measure that to determine your toxin load, but it's a–I believe that one is urinary analysis in most cases that you can get. But the reason I'm interested in doing that is I looked up some studies on juice fasting and there's one really interesting one. I'll link to it in the shownotes if you go to BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice. But they actually did a urinary lipid peroxidation measurement of MDA during the course of a fast and found a massive, massive drop in these lipid peroxides.
And again, I don't necessarily think that a juice-based diet is something you would do for life. But in terms of the drop in toxin load, particularly the lipid peroxidation toxin load, which is something that would be increased through vegetable oil consumption, even if you're doing like a lot of heavy meat cooking, grilling, barbecuing, et cetera, it literally just got cleaned out, clean as a whistle with this consumption of juice. In this case, it was a three-day fast. And so, they also suspect it might have been due to just the low fat content of a juice fast. Meaning, just less lipids to get oxidized or peroxidized in general. But it's really compelling. And so, what I want to do is actually measure toxin load before and after and actually see what happens to lipid peroxides in general, just for me eating almost like a semi-carnivore diet for the past several months. Not that a carnivore diet is going to be super high in these lipid peroxides, but I'm just curious, if I do a before and after, what actually happens as far as the effects of a juice fast from a toxin load standpoint.
Junaid: That'd be a great experiment. If you do it, I'll follow you. And I want to see those results.
Ben: Yeah, yeah. The other one I want to pay attention to is the microbial diversity because I've done another study that looked into the actual microbiome, and they found a big, big increase in Akkermansia and bifidobacteria. And I think that was like closer to a seven-day juice diet, but enterobacteria and lactobacilli went down. And so, basically, what that means is that a lot of the markers, specifically the microbiome, the bacterial markers of metabolic syndrome, were decreased. Well, all the bacterial markers associated with more robust metabolic health from a microbiome standpoint, those all went up. And so, it appears it's shifting the microbiome as well when you do something like try something similar to a juice diet. Now, I don't know how fruit-forward versus vegetable-forward, this particular diet that they were using was, but I would imagine with like a real vegetable forward protocol like this, particularly without a lot of the herbicides and pesticides, et cetera, there'd be a profound impact on the biome.
Junaid: Totally. What's an interesting story in terms of pesticides and herbicides, and non-organic produce, it's very deceptive in the sense that it looks like the exact same–like an organic kale versus a non-organic kale looks pretty similar. You have to actually look into a microscope to actually see that there's harmful chemicals in there. And industrial agriculture–are you familiar with the German scientist Fritz Haber and his story?
Ben: Yup. I haven't heard the story. I don't think I've heard the story, but go and tell it.
Junaid: So, industrial agriculture actually has its roots in World War II. So, there was a German scientist called Fritz Haber, and he invented this process for making synthetic nitrogen fertilizer. And one of his other scientific breakthroughs at the time was the creation of poisons known as pesticides. And so, to Haber, he used his pesticides as the first chemical weapon in history in the holocaust. But after the war was over, the U.S. chemical companies, they bought the pesticides back to America and they rebranded as pesticides on American farms. And farmers at the time could use sort of nitrogen fertilizer to spray it on the crops even if they hadn't taken care of their crops. So, it was a way to focus on the short-term at the sacrifice of the long-term. So, it was kind of a hack, and there were also economic incentives at the time.
So, instead of understanding and honoring the natural processes that go into ancestral agricultural practices, you can just throw these chemicals on them. And the viciousness in terms of the cycle is that the more and more you pour these fertilizers and pesticides, the more and more you become dependent on them. Hence, the big chemical companies have really, really high market caps in terms of their billions of dollars of revenue. But modern agriculture today is not designed for the betterment of soil. And to illustrate this in a very concrete way, the number one crop in America today is field corn, and it is entirely sprayed by glyphosate and roundup. And every year for every American alive, 3 pounds of toxic chemicals are sprayed onto the food.
There's over 200 peer-reviewed studies on this that correlate that spraying of these chemicals at ground up actually affects ADHD in children. And there's a lot of lawsuits now, and one of the more recent lawsuits is there was a jury that hit Monsanto with a $2 billion judgment for a cancer lawsuit to compensate for those people who are damaged, who contradict cancer after having glyphosate-based produce because it kills all the microbes in your body. And your body can handle acute stress, but not chronic stresses. So, I bring this all up in the context of prioritizing organic produce, and if you can, supporting the family farms and going to the farmer's market and supporting them, independent of farmer's juice. I just think it's a civic and political action when you make this benign purchase, or seemingly benign purchase at the grocery store.
Ben: Yeah. That's super good point, that story of Fritz Haber and the idea that a lot of pesticides and herbicides were originally almost like wartime chemicals, biological weapons. It reminds me also of the same story with fluoride, like a lot of people don't realize that pharmaceutical grade fluoride is used in toothpaste. And so, you don't have to worry as much about that. But the fluoride in water, that's an untreated industrial waste product that contains pretty high amounts of arsenic and lead. And one reason for that is that the hydrogen fluoride, and silicone tetrafluoride is the other one, those are byproducts of fertilizer production.
And a ton of this type of waste built up to the extent to where they had to figure out what to do with a lot of this fluoride and wound up actually starting to drip-feed it into drinking water to “prevent dental decay,” when in fact, it is, not to sound like a conspiracy theorist, one way to just get rid of the massive amounts of industrial fluoride waste that is a byproduct of a lot of our fertilizer production. So, when you're consuming fluoride from drinking water, it's even different than the fluoride they're adding to tooth cleaning products. It's a really big issue. If you go look at the actual source of fluoride–and I'll put a link in the shownotes to some pretty good articles on fluoride's transformation from industrial waste to almost like a public health product, but it's pretty shocking.
Junaid: Yeah. No. I totally echo that. It's important as citizens just of the world to recognize how big industries if they're motivated solely by economic incentives at the cost of our health. It just goes unnoticed. It's important to actually emphasize this and spread it, but also be calm and hopeful because they're real solutions and go in that wind. There's another story back in the 1950s. It would be surprising to hear this from a doctor, but Big Tobacco, for example, would pay doctors and actors to say that cigarette smoking can actually help your cough, can actually clear up your code of sinuses. And Philip Morris was one of the companies at the time.
And it was not until 20 years of people just smoking non-stop until the oncologist began to be questioning, okay, all these–and making the clinical link between them. So, I think it's important, and I think some of the big fertilizer companies are going to be the equivalent of the Big Tobacco companies when we look back 50 years from now. There's a lot of hope in terms of regenerative agriculture. And Kiss the Ground is one of the organizations that we support. It's a non-profit and it directly works with farmers around the country to provide them financial, educational, and social resources because a lot of the problem is like farmers–it's hard to be a farmer. It's so, so hard. You're playing with Mother Nature. You're playing with a lot of different variables. The economic stresses are real.
So, for them, it's a lot–they're kind of–sometimes tunnel vision in terms of doing what they need to do. But if you approach them with other farmers as representatives and give them financial resources, you actually work with them, you actually support them, you can seed the next movement and replenish all the damage that's been done over the past 100 years. And if there's any message, it's important to always keep the hope alive. And I think regenerative agriculture and kiss–and that's why we donate from each sale, to Kiss the Ground as a non-profit.
Ben: Yeah. I like that. And again, when you call–when did you call me, like a couple months ago? To tell me about the juice–like I really was not that interested just because I really did think this was going to be just like yet another fruit juice to get shipped to your house. But seeing my kids and my wife and how much they actually love this stuff and are just sucking it down every single day, how good I feel when I'm drinking it, how much better an evening cocktail it makes. And then also, even though I haven't done it yet, I'll report to my audience once I do it, this idea of me at some point in the next month doing about a five-day juice fast just using your juices.
I'm a big fan. I really don't think a couple months ago if you'd asked me if I was going to do a podcast about juicing that I would have, but I'm actually pretty excited to tell people about this because again, keto-friendly, super clean, more vegetable-forward than fruit-forward, like it kind of ticks the box with everything I've been looking for in a juice. And I'm not just saying this to blow smoke or saying this to make this podcast sound like a commercial. I actually really do like the juice. So, I'm in good conscience in recommending it to folks to try out.
And so, in terms of people just like signing up, getting a box, trying it out, ordering, et cetera, I know that we've got a special discount code. I think it's BEN. Is that?
Ben: Okay. So, that saves $5, I think, off of a box or off of an order.
Ben: Okay. So, you save five bucks. I think the juices, what do they come out to to like drink a whole juice, like five or six bucks, something like that?
Ben: Okay. Yeah. So, way less than what you get if you were buying this stuff from like the natural foods grocery store or from the cold-pressed juicery or something like that. But anyways, you just order a box, you get a variety pack, you get some wellness shots, whatever. I don't even know what I've been getting. I've just been drinking what gets sent to my house, but it's amazing, all of it. And you go to the Farmers Juice website and you just use code BEN, or else just go to the–if you go to the shownotes at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice, I'll just link to everything that we've been talking about as well, like studies, and books, and Junaid's juicing website, et cetera. So, anyways, Farmers Juice is what it's called. Anything else you want to share with folks while I have you on the call, Junaid?
Junaid: Yeah. I think uh one thing is the link is thefarmersjuice.com or farmersjuice.com/ben.
Ben: Okay. Got it.
Junaid: And you can type in BEN in the discount code. I think 2020 has been a character-building year in many ways. And one of the ways in terms of putting yourself in the best position for 2021, speaking personally, is like you've got to show up in terms of self-empowerment and being your own best friend, and making sure all your different life departments are nourished. And nutrition is one of those key areas. And our kind of challenges, if you've had juices in the past, or you're juicing at home and you've stopped juicing because it was such a pain, experiment with the box, try it out. And if you have any feedback, write to me at [email protected]. And our goal and aim is to not only hit the best juice that you've had at the juice shop at home, but exceed that quality. And they all taste sort of mouth-wateringly delicious. That's one of the key questions that people ask, like, “Does this taste good? Does this taste like grass? Does this taste like mainlining apple juice?” It actually tastes wholesome. That's the one word how I would capture it.
Ben: Okay. Cool. I like that, I like that. And it does have an amazing flavor, like it just tastes more alive, which I really like. And I think a big part of that is the sourcing, the work with the farmers, the commitment to the packaging, and the quality of the final product itself. So, you guys are up to some good things and I dig it. So, again, folks, I'll link to everything at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice. The discount code if you wind up on the Farmers Juice website at farmersjuice.com/ben is code BEN to save five bucks. Get yourself some shots, get yourself some juice. I know that you can get a subscription, but you can cancel any time. Stay fresh for 30 days in your fridge. So, give it a go and leave any of your comments or questions for Junaid or I at BenGreenfieldFitness.com/juice and one of us can pop in and reply to any questions that you have. Let me know if you try, like I'm going to try a five-day juice fast, and I'll keep you guys posted on that one, too.
And Junaid, thanks for making juicing something I can actually do now guilt-free, and for coming on the show to share this with us.
Junaid: You're so, so welcome. I'm so grateful to be here. Thank you, Ben.
Ben: Awesome. Alright, folks. Well, I'm Ben Greenfield along with Junaid Kalmadi signing out from BenGreenfieldFitness.com. Have an amazing week.
Well, thanks for listening to today's show. You can grab all the shownotes, the resources, pretty much everything that I mentioned over at BenGreenfieldFitness.com, along with plenty of other goodies from me, including the highly helpful “Ben Recommends” page, which is a list of pretty much everything that I've ever recommended for hormone, sleep, digestion, fat loss, performance, and plenty more. Please, also, know that all the links, all the promo codes, that I mentioned during this and every episode, helped to make this podcast happen and to generate income that enables me to keep bringing you this content every single week. When you listen in, be sure to use the links in the shownotes, use the promo codes that I generate, because that helps to float this thing and keep it coming to you each and every week.
Is juicing healthy? I'll admit, I've never been much of a fan of it, or the whole “cold-pressed juice” trend for that matter.
Most of these popular juices are full of oodles of sugar that basically mainline fructose into your bloodstream with very little of the actual fiber and water you'd find in whole fruit.
Most are extremely overpriced compared to what you could make at home, yet what you can make at home creates a huge mess and cleanup situation. (Anybody else ever tried to clean a juicer daily and had to deal with all the pulp and waste all over the kitchen counter?)
Furthermore, the actual source of most of the produce used in the juices is subpar fruit and vegetables grown in degraded, mineral-depleted soil and/or contains GMO ingredients, pesticides, herbicides, and other additives; and if they *don't* have preservatives, they go bad super quickly in your fridge, hence destroying all your hard-earned juice.
Anyways, you can learn more about some of the problems with most cold-pressed juices in my article “Why Most Juices Are Sugar-Bombs Loaded With Toxins That Spoil Faster Than You Can Drink Them (& What You Can Do About It).”
In the past, my solution for this has been to use a good organic vegetable juice powder, such as the one made by my friends at Organifi. Yet, recently, I've begun drinking actual liquid juices again, as have my wife and kids.
We're talking flavors like:
- Athletic Greens (cucumber, celery, lemon, ginger, turmeric, basil, mint, dandelion greens, maca)
- Digestive Greens (cucumber, dino kale, ginger, lemon, turmeric, basil, mint, apple cider vinegar)
- Focus Greens (cucumber, basil, mint, ginger, lemon, turmeric, lime, matcha)
- Peaceful Greens (cucumber, basil, mint, ginger, turmeric, lemon, ashwagandha)
- Performance Greens (cucumber, celery, lemon, ginger, turmeric, basil, mint, lion's mane)
- Ginger Immunity (apple, lemon, ginger, turmeric, cayenne pepper, black peppercorn)
- Up-Beet Immunity (lemon, apple, pineapple, ginger, turmeric, cayenne pepper, black peppercorn, beet)
- Gut Feeling Good (apple, coconut water, jicama, apple cider vinegar, ginger, lemon)
- Green Fuel (cucumber, kale, celery, spinach, lime, ginger, apple, lemon)
- Focus Fuel (apple, fennel, lemon, lemongrass, jalapeno, matcha)
- Athletic Aid (coconut water, orange, turmeric, lemon, ginger, black pepper)
- Carrot Digest (carrot, jicama, lemon, ginger, turmeric)
- Earthy Roots (carrot, orange, apple, pineapple, beet)
- Turmeric Energy (apple, lemon, ginger, turmeric, cayenne)
- Orange Immunity (oranges, ginger)
- Immunity Strength (pineapple, ginger, lemon, cayenne pepper)
- Ginger Renewal (extra ginger, apple, lemon turmeric, cayenne pepper, black peppercorn)
My change in perspective occurred after a phone call I had with my friend Junaid Kalmadi, who recently sent me some of his juices to try. Junaid is a values-driven serial entrepreneur motivated by love, service, and positive impact. He is the founder and CEO of Farmers Juice (get $5 off any order with code BEN). They deliver organic, cold-pressed juices and wellness shots at nearly half the cost of a juice shop. Each juice has 1 to 1.5 lbs. of produce (like dino kale, cucumber, ginger, turmeric, celery, mint, basil, and more).
Farmers Juice has also developed the world’s first keto-friendly and functional green juice line. They include adaptogens, antioxidants, and mushrooms to boost focus, calm, and athletic performance. Most juices lose their nutrients almost immediately and expire within two to three days. Farmers Juice uses an innovative technique called high-pressure processing (HPP) that preserves juice using cold pressure instead of heat. As a result, their juices keep their nutrient value for 30 days—without preservatives or other junk.
All of their produce sourcing is from family farms based in California. So when you drink Farmers Juice, you support the farmers who actually make our soil better, not worse. Most juice shops charge $10-12 for an organic cold-pressed juice. By working directly with local farms, Farmers Juice has created the most affordable organic juices at $5.99 a bottle. Their mission is to make the highest quality cold-pressed juices affordable, support the human rights of 2.4 million farmers in the US, and champion the next generation of farming with regenerative agriculture.
Prior to Farmers Juice, Junaid founded Brain.fm, a music neuroscience company. Funded by a US federal government research and used by the USA Olympic Wrestling team, Brain.fm designs music to improve focus, relaxation, and sleep. Available as an app on iOS and Android, the app serves millions of people around the world. Junaid resides in Los Angeles, where he enjoys meditation, prayer, beach swimming, volunteering, community fire chats, and nature adventures.
During this discussion, you'll discover:
-Is juicing healthy, and what exactly is a cold-pressed juice? 8:45
- Two elements: the juice and the solid (pulp)
- 70-95% of a vegetable is liquid and juice
- The juice contains many micronutrients
- Cold-pressed juice takes around two pounds of produce, separates the liquid from the solid
- Cold is important to preserve nutrient integrity
- The result is all the goodness of the juice, and the jolt of micronutrients, vitamins, minerals
- 5 pounds of veggies is around five full plates of salad
- No fruits used as sweeteners with Farmers Juices
- 9-11 g of carbs in each juice
- Ben does not experience spikes in blood sugar levels after drinking the juices
- Tracking blood sugar levels with a CGM
- HPP: Introduces cold water and high pressure neutralizes all negative bacteria and pathogens that degrade the juice for up to 30 days
- Harvest to HPP on the same day; no trucking
-How Junaid maintains optimal quality for his juices…17:45
- High-quality soil, only organic produce used
- High-quality water
- USDA organic standards are followed (no pesticides)
- Promote biodiversity
- Facilities are located near farms where the produce is harvested
- Work with the plants' life cycles
- “Ugly” produce is used as it's still high in nutrient density
- Instead of going to waste, like compost. Low-value use of high quality produce, a lot of the non-aesthetic produce that would not sell just because it doesn't look good is used for juicing
- Eating on the Wild Sideby Jo Robinson
- “Ugly,” misshapen produce tends to have higher antioxidant content
-Why soil is the key factor in a high-quality juice…22:23
- Soil is the “living skin” of the earth; it gives plants the nutrients they need to grow
- Plants eat the microorganisms within the soil
- There are more organisms in a handful of healthy soil than there are humans in the entire history of the earth
- You're not what you eat, you're what your plants eat – Michael Pollan
- Healthy soil absorbs carbon; unhealthy soil releases carbon
- Depletion of soils causes produce to have up to 50% fewer minerals and nutrients
- The Problem With Mineral Supplements, Why Minerals Don’t Get Absorbed, Why You Probably Have A Mineral Deficiency & What To Do About It, With Barton Scott
- Dirt to Soilby Gabe Brown
- It takes eight of today's oranges to match the vitamin A content of one orange from two generations past
-Links between nutrient deficiency and poor mental health…30:15
- Junaid's mother put a great deal of care into the meals she prepared
- In college, he began to experience depression and anxiety
- Cognitive decline led to poor grades, no success in job interviews
- Felt bankrupt on the inside seven years after becoming an entrepreneur
- Took six months off to focus on becoming a healthy human
- Meditation and mindfulness
- Lost 20 pounds
- Nurtured every life department with love
- Came upon a juice shop in Austin, TX, and custom-made ketogenic juices every day
- Felt an instant jolt inwardly and physically
-How flavors of juice are selected…35:35
- First five seconds after tasting is the best tell
- Constant feedback from customers
- Focus Fuelshot Ben mentioned
- With apple, fennel, lemon, lemongrass, jalapeno, and matcha
-Materials used for bottling…38:30
- 100% recycled materials used
- Encourage customers to recycle/reuse bottles
- Whether the juices can be frozen before drinking
- Where Farmers Juice delivers
-Advice on juice fasting…42:15
-Effects of juicing on the microbiome…45:00
-Dangers of non-organic farming and produce…
- Non-organic produce is very deceptive in its appearance
- Fritz Haberused pesticides as weapons during WWII
- Farmers began using the same pesticides on their crops after the war
- The more you use pesticides, the more dependent you become on them
- #1 crop in America is field corn; 100% fertilized by Roundup
- The real story about fluoride as an industrial waste product
- Kiss the Ground, non-profit that Farmers Juicesupports
-How to get Farmers Juice for yourself…57:40
- Farmers Juice(use code BEN to save $5 off any order)
-And much more!
Resources from this episode:
- Farmers Juice(use code BEN to save $5 off any order)
- A Groundbreaking New Way To Combine Artificial Intelligence, Sound & Music To Boost Creativity, Focus, Sleep & More with Junaid Kalmadi
- The Problem With Mineral Supplements, Why Minerals Don’t Get Absorbed, Why You Probably Have A Mineral Deficiency & What To Do About It, With Barton Scott.
- A New Style Of Meditation That Helps You To Stress Less & Accomplish More – The Emily Fletcher Podcast.
– Other resources:
- Fritz Haber
- Health benefit of vegetable/fruit juice-based diet: Role of microbiome
- The real story about fluoride as an industrial waste product
–Kion: My personal playground for new supplement formulations, Kion blends ancestral wisdom with modern science. Ben Greenfield Fitness listeners, save 20% off your first order with code BGF20.
–JOOVV: After using the JOOVV for close to 2 years, it's the only light therapy device I'd ever recommend. Give it a try: you won't be disappointed. For a limited time, JOOVV wants to hook you up with an exclusive discount on your first order. Just apply code BEN to your qualifying order.
–Thrive Market: Organic brands you love, for less. Your favorite organic food and products. Fast and free shipping to your doorstep. Receive a gift card worth up to $20 when you begin a new membership.
–Vuori: Activewear and athletic clothing for ultimate performance. Vuori is built to move and sweat in, yet designed with a West Coast aesthetic that transitions effortlessly into everyday life. Receive 25% off your first order when you use discount code BEN2020.