Tuesday, March 04, 2008


Tufts University Dismisses Juice Plus

Nutritionists at Tufts University in Boston don’t think very highly of the vitamin supplement Juice Plus, according to a 2006 report[1] published in the University’s widely read Health & Nutrition Letter.[2] Tufts’ critique, entitled The Minuses of Juice Plus, adds to a rapidly growing, unanimous body of unbiased expert commentary condemning the product, marketed by National Safety Associates (NSA).

In addition to poking holes in NSA’s claims about the disease-fighting benefits of Juice Plus, Tufts was critical of the company’s marketing tactics, noting that “in 2005, the National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus advised NSA to change its advertising to stop implying that Juice Plus Gummies, a chewable pill for children, is a nutritionally comparable alternative to vegetables and fruits.”[3]

Citing a critical commentary by Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC),[4] the Tufts newsletter also reported that "none of the scientific studies undertaken have sought to prove that Juice Plus is more effective or more bioavailable than other supplements” and “no studies exist to compare the physiologic effects of supplementation with Juice Plus and eating whole fresh fruits and vegetables”. The Center also cautioned “Juice Plus is distributed through a multi-tiered marketing scheme with exaggerated value and cost" and the Tufts nutritionists agreed, noting that NSA relies “on a network of distributors…along with personal testimonials to their products' effectiveness. Testimonials, however, do not equal scientific evidence.”

The Tufts newsletter concluded that Juice Plus doesn’t offer the benefits of fruit and vegetables -- “you're missing out on the fiber of the real thing; you're also leaving a gap in your daily diet that's likely to be filled in part with fatty foods.”


  1. The minuses of Juice Plus: Ask the Experts. Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter. Aug. 1, 2006;24(6): S1,4 [ISSN: 1526-0143].
  2. Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter wesbite. The Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy.
  3. How product testimonials bend the rules. Consumer Reports.
  4. Juice Plus. Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

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