Friday, June 4, 2010

Phillip and Iris – A misplaced faith in "Health" Juice

I have a couple who are acquaintances of mine. In their early 50’s, they have all the small problems that people in this age group have with the wear and tear on their bodies, particular their joints. They also have some additional concerns as each one of them, but more so Iris, are laid up sick in what seems to be several days at a time every few months.

I have given them Doctor Ray Strand’s excellent book, “What Doctor’s Don’t Know About Nutritional Medicine May Be Killing You”, and have approached them on several occasions about the possibilities of doing something different since what they are doing to develop and encourage a healthy lifestyle just ain’t working. Some of the conversations go like this:

Me – “Hey Phil, sorry to hear about Iris being sick, is she?”

Phillip – “Oh, she’ll be okay, she always get’s sick every few weeks.”

Me – “Have you finished reading Doctor’s Strand book about how Nutrition affects our health?”

Phillip – “Yeah, I looked through it, but that’s stuff we know already and we’re taking health supplements.”

Me – “Really?” “What are you taking?”

Phillip – “We’re drinking this (name deleted) juice that restores your health and we add Vitamin E and Vitamin C. The juice is great, gives us anti-oxidants.”

Me – “Yeah, that’s what they say. Actually the measurement for anti-oxidants in a given product is called the ORAC score, for Oxygenated Radical Absorption Capacity.”

Phillip – “Hey, how do you know about ORAC? That's the reason this juice is great, it has a high ORAC score.”

Me – “Well, I make it my business as it is my business, specifically my partnership with a Health Sciences company that manufactures pharmaceutical grade supplements. Did you know that your juice has a ORAC score around 600 from the literature I saw (actually the document came from an independent laboratory and stated that the three most popular “health” juices had ORAC scores between 500 and 700). Did you also know that 100% Grape Juice has an ORAC score of 800, if you can get past the sugary taste,..and that a good quality red wine has an ORAC score of around 1,100?”

Phillip – “Well don’t know about that, but we like the juice and it is doing us some good.”

Me – “Yeah, I can see that.”

Phillip also told me that the juice absorbs better in the stomach because it is a liquid - which has no basis in fact. In fact, nutrients are absorbed in the intestines after the stomach breaks them down. Phillip’s mistake is that he has limited his research and is abiding by unproven claims that the juice provides rejuvenated health, but he is, more importantly, not following the quality assurance piece of the equation where he truly evaluates if the juice (I call it Jungle Juice) has helped them. In this case, the juice is obviously not helping if they are bed ridden days out of each month. He also doesn’t understand that if supplementation is necessary, then it makes sense to get supplementation across the board in the amounts and ratios to provide a synergistic effect for this body and therefore his health, and not piecemeal your supplements.

What a life Phillip and Iris have. I'm glad it's not mine. Again, the bottom line is let the buyer beware.

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