The following feature appears in the May 2017 issue of NYLON.
For the past few years, I’ve been on a personal wellness journey. Case in point: The birthday present I’m most likely to request is a juicer, even with the potential struggles of cleaning it, the chance of produce going bad before I’ve even used it, and, of course, the obvious risk of slicing my finger off!
Lately, I’ve explored so many approaches to healthy eating, fitness, and anti-aging that I can hardly keep track, and I’m not alone. Industries have been built in the wellness space in every category. There are numerous 30-day clean-eating programs, nutritional specialists, fitness centers, and popular exercise classes that promote healthy living. Chances are you’ve probably tried one or more of these things yourself.
But the juice cleanse is the trend that seems to be the most common. Almost always marketed as a three- or five-day cure-all, the idea of doing your body a favor simply by drinking juice is a very alluring one.
To me, the way to maximize all of the benefits that juicing provides for your body (like decreasing inflammation, increasing energy and hydration) is to incorporate it into your daily routine. Cleansing is a good way to jump-start the process, but even if you have one green juice a day, you are doing something good for your body.
With my mind on juice, this Factory Girl started wondering about all of the details behind how juices are made and what makes them simply amazing. So I ventured from our SoHo offices to the Juice Press headquarters in Long Island City, Queens, where I was determined to get to the bottom of it all.
I’d love to pretend that I’m an expert on all of this, but let me introduce you to someone who really knows his stuff: Marcus Antebi is the founder and CEO of Juice Press. He created a brand that is really true to all it sets out to be—organic, raw, vegan, and extremely clean and pure—and I got to see it for myself.
In the factory, Antebi walks me through how the juice is made. Every day the company receives shipments of USDA organic produce that is then inspected by the team to make sure it’s top quality before it is washed and prepped.
Next, produce goes to the company’s five large juicing towers where it is pressed. It’s then delivered to the mixing refrigerator. That’s where all of the different juices are separated into batches. Smaller batches get filled by hand, while more popular combinations go through pump filters, to move things along faster.
I follow Antebi up a ladder—in Louboutin heels, obviously—to the bottling area, where bottles are sanitized and labeled.
The amount of each type of juice that gets produced varies based on weather, time of year, and historical sales, so Antebi and his team are able to forecast how many bottles of each juice they’ll need. The bottles get filled with the corresponding juices, and finally, they go onto the trucks and are distributed to the stores. Ta-da!
I agree to try out one of Juice Press’s five-day plans to really put it to the test. The company created a customized plan from beginning to end of food and drinks all made by Juice Press, and a shipment is delivered to my apartment each night. The plan includes a rotation of salads, soups, oatmeal, and of course, two or three juices for each day.
To be honest, the plan isn’t too far from how I normally eat. I work hard for something like this to be my go-to. I’m fixated on its soups (like split pea and red lentil), assortment of green juices, and its booster shots, especially the Ginger Fireball, which helps with inflammation.
I enlist my husband to do this with me, since I believe in strength in numbers, and it’s easier when we’re on the same eating schedule.
Although it’s harder for him to work these foods into his diet, we agree that it is convenient to have each day’s meals planned out by Juice Press so we don’t have to think about it.
I have to confess I don’t do it perfectly—I can’t give up my café au laits from my fave spot across the street.
Like I said, wellness is a journey, and I believe anything you can do consistently will be effective in the long term. Some habits are hard to break, but some I want to keep!