When I started my health coach training 6 years ago, one of the things I heard over and over from my teachers was that we (humans) are deficient in fruits and vegetables AND essential fatty acids – both critical for maintaining a healthy immune system. So I was thrilled when I was introduced to a solution that bridges the gap in the number of fruits and vegetables my family and I consume daily through concentrated fruits and vegetables found in Juice Plus+ capsules or chewables. Four years since integrating this amazing product into our daily health regimen, I am overjoyed that I can now get our omegas from Juice Plus+ also because this month they are releasing their own supplement. While there is plenty of research that shows we need omegas, there is also a lot of research showing that omegas can go rancid and getting a good quality supplement is key, both for you health and your investment. I can’t wait to share this new supplement in tandem with Juice Plus+ concentrated fruits and veggies and their plant-based protein powder.
Here, one of the Juice Plus+ Company’s leading medical experts, Dr. Richard Dubois, answers Frequently Asked Questions about the new omegas:
What are Omegas?
Omegas are fatty acids that have been shown to supports a broad array of health benefits – especially for the heart, brain, joints, skin, and eyes. The number after the term – Omega 3, for example – refers to chemical differences among the various types of omega fatty acids that impact how they are absorbed and utilized by the human body.
Among Omega 3s, what are DHA, EPA, and ALA, and how do they differ?
DHA (docosohexanoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentanoic acid) are the two main “long chain” Omega 3 fatty acids that are found primarily in algae and fish. ALA (alpha linolenic acid) is the main “short chain” Omega 3 fatty acid found primarily in plants such as flaxseed, chia, and others. Most of the proven benefits of Omega 3s have been linked to DHA and EPA rather than ALA, but ALA can have some additional benefits in the body.
Why do we use algal oil in Juice Plus+ Omega Blend rather than fish, like many other Omega 3 products do?
The algal oil in Juice Plus+ Omega Blend comes from a microalgae, Schitzochytrium, which is grown specifically for its rich DHA and EPA content. Fish actually get their DHA and EPA from eating algae, so we like to say that we are just cutting out the middle fish and going to the original plant source.
Does the algal oil come from the open ocean, and should I therefore be concerned about ocean contaminants in the algal oil?
No. The algal oil that we use in Juice Plus+ Omega Blend comes from algae grown in a contained and controlled environment, so that it is free of any contaminants.
What is sea buckthorn berry?
Sea buckthorn berry is a small orange berry grown in remote regions of the Himalayan Mountains. It is incredibly nutritious and is growing in popularity.
Why are there Omega 6 and 9 fatty acids in the product? I’ve heard that we get too much of them already.
As you know, we believe in trying to provide nutrition from whole food, in nature’s proportions, and Juice Plus+ Omega Blend is no exception. The Omega 6’s and 9’s come naturally from all of the plant-based oils in our Omega Blend, especially the raspberry and tomato seed oils. At their natural levels (as they exist in Juice Plus+ Omega Blend) and without being degraded or changed by processing, Omega 6’s and 9’s are very healthful.
How are the oils in Juice Pus+ Omega Blend processed?
As with the ingredients in all of our Juice Plus+ products, we do our best to process the produce as minimally as possible. For the seed oils in Juice Plus+ Omega Blend, this means that they are cold pressed. It is a similar process to that used to make high quality olive oil. The sea buckthorn berry oil, for example, is extracted using liquid CO2, which allows us to extract the oil from the berries without damaging them through the use of harsh chemicals or the release of toxins (either into the environment or into the product). The algal oil is processed using molecular distillation, which is a process that separates the smallest molecules of DHA and EPA, again without damaging the oils or releasing toxins.
Why does our capsule look different than other oil supplements?
Our Omega Blend is offered in a new, unique, state-of-the-art delivery form. It is a two-piece hard shell capsule, very similar to the capsules that hold our Garden, Orchard, and Vineyard Blends. But the two pieces of the Omega Blend capsule are fused together using a proprietary technique developed by our capsule partners that uses water instead of heat. Our capsule is thus better than traditional delivery forms for oils because the lower temperatures keeps the oils inside the capsules from degrading.
Is Juice Plus+ Omega Blend vegetarian?
Yes. All of the ingredients – including the new capsule shell – are vegetarian.
Is it vegan?
Yes. There are absolutely no animal products or byproducts in Juice Plus+ Omega Blend, so it is likely acceptable to most vegans. However, is not certified vegan because there are other requirements for certification above and beyond the fact that it contains animal products or byproducts. We are investigating those requirements to learn whether or not Juice Plus+ Omega Blend can be certified vegan.
Is it Kosher certified?
Will it be NSF certified?
Yes. NSF requires testing of the first commercial batch of product, so we will be submitting that to NSF as soon as it is available. The first commercially-available bottles of Juice Plus+ Omega Blend will not feature the NSF certification seal on them; but as soon as the product passes the NSF certification process, that fact will be available on the NSF website. The NSF seal will then appear on bottles from future production runs.
How is the Juice Plus+ Omega Blend packaged, and what is the recommended daily consumption?
Juice Plus+ Omega Blend comes in bottles containing 120 capsules each. Just like Juice Plus+ Vineyard Blend, we package two bottles together per carton, which equals a four-month supply – just like Juice Plus+ Vineyard Blend. The recommended daily consumption is two capsules per day for adults and teenagers.
Is Juice Plus+ Omega Blend suitable for children?
Yes, of course – just as all of our Juice Plus+ products, as long as the child is able to swallow the capsule. As with other Juice Plus+ blends, children below the age of 13 should take one capsule per day instead of the recommended adult and teenage consumption of two. We do not plan to offer this product in a Chewable version at this time due to manufacturing and stability concerns.
Who makes Juice Plus+ Omega Blend for us?
It is manufactured by one of our long-term product partners. Confidentiality agreements preclude us from being any more specific than that.
Do we have any plans for clinical research on Juice Plus+ Omega Blend?
Yes. We certainly plan to include Omega Blend as part of our ongoing research program. We would not anticipate having a published study completed, however, until early 2019 at the soonest. We will not be conducting research on Juice Plus+ Omega Blend alone, however, just as we don’t have any freestanding research on Juice Plus+ Vineyard Blend – and for the same reason: we don’t want to encourage people to purchase either Omega Blend or Vineyard Blend as a standalone product. We want to keep it connected to our core product, Juice Plus+ Orchard + Garden Blends.
Why is there a Supplement Facts panel on Juice Plus+ Omega Blend, instead of the nutrition facts panel we show on Juice Plus+ Orchard, Garden and Vineyard Blends?
Because of the nature of the product and its focus on providing specific nutrients derived from plants – omega fatty acids – a Nutrition Facts label would be completely useless, offering little more than a series of zeros. Also, providing a Supplement Facts panel will facilitate quantitative comparisons with other omega supplements.