The Local Green Juice Designed to Turn Veggie Haters Into Veggie Lovers

Not an easy task.

Juice Dr. juices | Photo via Instagram

Juice Dr. juices | Photo via Instagram

“It tastes like apple juice filtered through turf” and “It hurts my soul” are just a few of the responses I got when I asked vehement vegetable haters to, despite their disdain for all things green and from the ground, try green juice. I’m not a complete monster, though — there was a legitimate reason for the taste test. I asked them to try the green juices, all three from Ardmore-based delivery juice company Juice Dr., to see what the vegetable averse thought of the juices, designed to woo even the biggest of veggie haters into a healthier — green-juice filled, obviously — lifestyle.

You see, Juice Dr. has three phases of green juices: The first (the one described as “apple juice filtered through turf” by a veggie hater), is a green juice for beginners, featuring apple, kale, lemon and ginger; Phase 2, which Juice Dr. founder FJ Leto tells me staunch veggie haters usually move on to after about two weeks of drinking Phase 1, ups the green factor by adding cucumber and spinach to the mix; and Phase 3, which a veggie hater would ideally happily move on to in anywhere from one to three months, gets rid of all the fruit and adds celery and dandelion greens. It is really, really green. All of the ingredients in the juices are organic, and they source ingredients locally. Plus, they have both chefs and nutritionists on staff to make sure the juices are up to par in both the taste and nutrition departments.

So, how exactly are these phases of green juice supposed to make you actually like green juice? Well, as Leto explains, the company’s theory is based on the idea that when someone who isn’t big on vegetables incorporates a daily green juice into their diet, they are introducing new bacteria into their microbiome, and this new bacteria feeds on greens. So once they start upping that greens-loving bacteria in their body, they’ll begin to crave more veggies (yes, even in the form of green juice). Cue the move from Phase 1 to Phase 2, and eventually to Phase 3. There isn’t hard scientific evidence to back up this theory, but Leto says he is working with Drexel’s Department of Nutrition Sciences to start clinical trials looking into how their juices might affect gut bacteria in an individual.

Now, to get to how the green juices actually taste: Phase 1 was super ginger-y, even Moscow Mule-like according to one veggie hater — which is quite the compliment, I’d say; Phase 2 tasted a bit more earthy with lots of cucumber flavor in the mix, and it caused the veggie haters faces to scrunch a bit more when they tasted it; when it comes to Phase 3, I almost felt like I was throwing babies in the deep end of a pool when I served it to the veggie haters. It is a no-nonsense green juice and tastes like, in the words of one veggie hater, “straight earth.” But, like I said before, if you don’t like veggies, you’re supposed to work your way up to Phase 3 — you don’t start butterflying your way across a pool in your first swim lesson.

I, a human who will willingly eat raw kale and actually enjoy it, was a fan of all the juices except for Phase 3, which only tasted like celery to me. That said, Be Well Philly editor Emily happily downed a nearly full bottle of Phase 3 in just a few minutes. In the end, the veggie haters all agreed: They could see themselves drinking Phase 1, but Phase 2 and Phase 3 would be hard sells for them. But after all, the idea is that you start there and then your taste changes.

So, how can you get your hands on one of these juices to try ‘em for yourself? Well, Juice Dr., which doesn’t have a storefront, delivers all around Philly. Their juices run between $5.99 and $7.99 (on the low side for organic cold-pressed juice), and they have a two-week trial where you get a juice a day, with all of the juices costing $5.99. They also have a line of juices, with some additions along with their green juices, at HubBub Coffee locations. And they tell me they’ll be rolling out line of raw foods (think: raw walnuts tacos and the like) soon too.

You can find more info about Juice Dr. here. May the veggie-loving force be with you!

Oh! And one last thing: I didn’t actually know that hating vegetables — like truly hating them — was a real thing, so I was surprised to find that I actually work with a handful of grown-ups who refuse to eats their peas (and kale and brussels sprouts and, well, you get the point). So we’re curious to know how many more veggie haters are out there. Take our poll below!

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