Hippocrates Health Institute

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The following sections are based on my 9-week stay at Hippocrates Health Institute, West Palm Beach, Florida, when I attended the Health Educator Program, graduating in April 2014.

Contact me for more information, or phone me on 07770 276610. Alternatively, contact Hippocrates direct, quoting my name as reference.

NB By contacting me directly to book a stay, you will receive a $150 voucher to spend at the on-site store.

What is Hippocrates Health Institute?

One evening, while I was on the Health Educator program, I was walking through the campus, when a lady in a car wound down her window with a confused look. “Where am I?” she asked. “Is this a hospital?”

“Well, kind of,” I said. “But not in the traditional sense.” I was unsure how to describe Hippocrates in a nutshell to someone who knew nothing about it, but in retrospect, my answer seemed to fit.

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Hippocrates Directors Drs Brian and Anna-Maria Clement

The doors of the original Hippocrates Health Institute (or “Hippocrates”, to save my fingers) were opened by co-founders Ann Wigmore and Viktoras Kulvinskas in 1961, at 25, Exeter Street, Boston, USA. Current directors Drs Brian and Anna-Maria Clement moved the institution – and its founding principles – to its current location in West Palm Beach, Florida, in 1987.

Since 1961, thousands of people have undergone its unique program, a natural and complementary system which serves the whole person – mind, body and spirit. The main focus is its food – an organic, 100% vegan, enzyme-rich diet, 80% of which is raw and living.

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Image Credit: Ceyda Tavukcular

The institute is constantly involved with or reading up on ground-breaking research from scientists across the world, producing substantive data and empirical evidence which allows it to continue in the same, proven vein, while further adding to its philosophical grounding.

“It’s not the food in your life, it’s the life in your food”, and “Food IS Medicine”.

These are the adopted slogans for Hippocrates, showing its conviction in the power of raw, living food, as well as the proven thesis that not only can food prevent disease in the first place, but if used consistently and permanently, it can, in most cases, REVERSE it.

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En route to the Store

I’ll say that last bit again: Raw, living food can, in most cases, REVERSE disease.

The Hippocrates philosophy is to TEACH its guests exactly how to live a long, healthy life, free of pain, disease and premature ageing. It offers a comprehensive detox of the mind, body and spirit and promotes a renewed sense of self-worth, not just through the food it serves, but also through FREE daily lectures, FREE exercise classes, (some FREE) psychotherapy sessions, a daily supplements and enzymes regime and (some FREE) therapeutic treatments, including colonic hydrotherapy.

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One of the lakes in the beautiful grounds

You cannot stay as a guest – or as a Health Educator – at Hippocrates without emerging a changed person at the end of it. And only in the very best possible way, which, for you, may be physical, or mental, or emotional. Or, in many cases, all of the above.

Hippocrates is NOT a four-star resort. There are sunbeds a-plenty, thus ensuring everyone gets their daily Vitamin D fix. There are clean, fluffy towels at every turn, and several swimming pools, plunge pools, mineral pools and Jacuzzis.

Just don’t expect to be served a Cosmopolitan, a beer, a Coke, or even a standard fruit juice – Hippocrates is an alcohol-free, processed-consumables-free zone. And that’s why it gets the results it does.

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The Life Transformation Program (LTP)

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Brian Clement gives the low-down on the institute’s own-brand LifeGive supplements (Credit: Ceyda Tavukcular)

Lasting three weeks, the intensity and length of Hippocrates’ principal program will be like no other detox program you have ever been on. Before long, your insides will be squeaky clean. You’ll notice it, and so will everyone around you.

EVERYTHING is organic. And even the water you wash with is distilled – as pure as it’s possible to get.

The program is this length of time because of the proven ethos that it takes 3 weeks to truly break bad habits, which, in the west, mostly revolve around poor diet and a lack of exercise. But you’re welcome to stay longer if you wish, or if you need to.

Another aspect which makes Hippocrates unique is its determination to pass on its basic knowledge to guests and students so they can continue to thrive in the outside world. In a recent, on-campus Q and A session – open to all guest and students – Brian said: “My job is ridiculous. I have to teach people how to live. It’s nuts.”

This may well seem ridiculous to those in his position, but for the majority of us who have unwittingly adopted the western way of eating, (likened by one health professional to trained seals conditioned by generational and commercial brainwashing), it is a necessity.

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Sprouting Class with Dr Brian Hetrich in the Hut

If it wasn’t, Hippocrates wouldn’t constantly have guests with stage four diseases such as cancer, auto-immune, diabetes, heart disease, Lymes Disease, digestive diseases, MS, AIDS, chronic fatigue syndrome and many others.

But you don’t have to be ill to benefit from Hippocrates. I was generally well, and post-experience I felt (and looked) younger, slimmer, and full of  (sprouted) beans (literally!) If you go to Hippocrates BEFORE you get ill, Dr Clement will say you are smart. The question is: ARE YOU?

I cannot tell you how many times I witnessed guests telling their story on their graduation day (every Friday; always a very special occasion), explaining how their doctors had told them to prepare for death. Yet there they were, on stage, microphone in hand, grinning from ear to ear (usually with a few tears) – and fit, well and strong. Some of these people are standing there years after first visiting Hippocrates, positively thriving, in spite of the odds they were given by the mainstream medical system.

The pro-activity and empowerment taught to guests through lectures and other educational means is paramount in “helping people help themselves”, another slogan at Hippocrates.

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The Juice Bar – come and get your wheatgrass!

One good example of this “do-it-yourself” philosophy is the introduction of daily enemas and wheatgrass implants for guests on the Life Transformation Program (for implants, think juiced wheatgrass + enema bag/syringe + where the sun doesn’t shine). It’s the first lecture you will attend, including a practical demo (to a point!) After completing the program, guests are encouraged to practise both once a week at home.

On your first day, you will have a blood test. A day or two later, you will have a consultation with a qualified nurse. Those who have enrolled in the wake of life-threatening diseases will have a consultation with Dr Brian Clement.

EVERYONE is strongly encouraged to take enzymes from this point, as well as pro-biotics, Vitamin D, and B12. Depending on your blood results, more supplements may be recommended to you, but they are in no way compulsory.

Equally, guests are encouraged to have one fasting day per week to rest the digestive system, and also to apply the proven fact that those who live the longest, healthiest lives tend to be those who eat the least. At Hippocrates, this is a Wednesday. And rest assured, if there is any medical reason why this won’t work for you, you won’t take part; you will just eat as if it’s a normal day on the program.

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Fasting day means fresh coconuts! (l-r) Me, Ceyda and Diego

When guests leave, they do so with renewed knowledge, courage and determination. At Hippocrates, they learn how to continue to live a responsible life and to live by the means of committed, positive action. I’m not going to lie – it’s a long road; a full detox takes 7 years, and then only if you continue to live primarily in this way.

Although it is imperative that guests are able to transfer the entire concept into their own worlds, the Hippocrates philosophy does not try to alter its guests’ powers of self-determination. Those who “fall off the wagon” are welcomed back with understanding and love. The door is always open. And it is never too late.

The hub of Hippocrates: Wigmore Hall
The hub of Hippocrates: Wigmore Hall

Equally, there is a strong sense of realism here, particularly when it comes to finance. Co-director Dr Brian emphasises that a lack of money is not a bar to being a guest; if people can prove they are in need of the help but do not have the financial resources to back this up, those people will still get to stay here and receive that same, continual support, either at a reduced rate, or for free.

I cannot emphasise enough what a truly special place this is; as I’ve said before, Hippocrates remains the FIRST and ONLY place I would send someone in need of a health shake-up, whether they were seriously ill, or just generally below par.

Want to know more? Thinking of going to Hippocrates? Email me for more information or phone me on 07770 276610. Alternatively, call or email Hippocrates Health Institute direct, quoting my name as a reference.

REMEMBER: By contacting me directly, you will receive a $150 voucher to spend in the on-site Hippocrates store.

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The Health Educator Program

Wheatgrass harvest time for the Health Eds
Wheatgrass harvest time for the Health Eds

I found out about this 9-week course by reading one of Kris Carr’s books. Quite rightly, she was singing its praises, having completed the program herself.

For those of you who don’t know Kris Carr, at the age of 31, she was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, totalling more than 20 tumours in her liver and lungs. Her prognosis was bleak, to say the least.

 

But she rejected the traditional treatment routes of chemo and radiotherapy and immersed herself in the world of alternative solutions instead. And that’s when she decided to go to Hippocrates – both as patient and student at the same time. You can see some of her time here on her documentary “Crazy, Sexy Cancer” (just bear in mind that Hippocrates has undergone many positive, modernising changes since then!).

That was in 2007, and she is STILL a vibrant picture of health today, and a formidable ball of energy and passion, having graced the hallowed sofa of Oprah Winfrey at least twice to date. I’m not sure that her diet is still 85% raw, but I have no doubt that the way she lives generally is as a direct result of what she learned there.

Lecture time with Dr Brian Clement, in the Hut (credit: Ceyda Tavuckular)
Lecture time with Dr Brian Clement, in the Hut (credit: Ceyda Tavukcular)

On your first day of the Health Educator Program, you will have a blood test, just as in the Life Transformation Program. Once the results are back, you will have a consultation with a qualified nurse. Those who have enrolled in the wake of life-threatening diseases will have a consultation with Dr Brian Clement.

EVERYONE is strongly encouraged to take enzymes from this point, as well as pro-biotics, Vitamin D, and B12. Depending on your results, more supplements may be recommended to you, but they are in no way compulsory.

Firstly – regarding the course – a word to the wise: the curriculum will teach you many things and will also provide multiple possible directions for you to head in from that point, but it’s not a stand-alone “medical” qualification in itself.

Equally, there are certain therapies which, although included on the LTP are not automatically included in the Health Educator Program; some carry an additional fee.

However, what this course will do is arm you with LOADS of up-to-the-minute information on how to eat and live in the best way possible. After all, if you want to help other people, the journey MUST start with you.

Raw food preparation class (l-r)  Me, Florence, Diego and Jabib (credit -  Ceyda Tavuckular)
Raw food preparation class (l-r) Me, Florence, Diego and Jabib (credit – Ceyda Tavukcular)

You don’t have to work in the field of health or nutrition already; remember that I went as a journalist and fledgling blogger.

I emerged with oodles more confidence about the subject of health, nutrition and well-being – something which I hope I pass on every time I post – but I also feel that I have enough knowledge and personal experience now to advise and coach people one-to-one, particularly where food and lifestyle is concerned.

Health Eds stay off-campus for the whole 9 weeks; sign up early enough and you will be only a short walk from the institute in a Hippocrates-managed house (see pic below). Otherwise, they will help you find somewhere. In all cases, you will need to pay rent in addition to the course costs.

The first three weeks involve attending the same lectures as the guests on the Life Transformation Program. But once the Health Educator program starts, the detail will be at a deeper level than the lectures you will have attended in the first three weeks.

As you hit week four, the intensity kicks in – lectures from 10am to 5/6pm every week day, plus a number of assignments, including open-book “exams” and presentations.

But don’t be afraid – the course is not designed to give you flashbacks to your school days; it’s about allowing you to respond to the information in the ways that resonate with you.

The nearby Health Educator house I live in, accommodating 7
The nearby Health Educator house I lived in, accommodating 7

Subjects covered include: nutrition; digestion; enzymes; alternative healing techniques and remedies; blood analysis; raw food cookery (practical and certificated); sprouting (practical); growing living foods (practical and certificated) counselling techniques; emotional freedom technique; meditation (including a practical element); aromatherapy basics; reflexology (certification with next level optional); iridology (basic certification); plus watching and debating a variety of key documentaries hand-picked by Dr Brian (you’ll find most of them in my DVDs section).

Bear in mind that the iridology and reflexology elements are NOT sufficient to give you a qualification to become a practitioner; they simply provide the foundation from which you can explore these skills further.

Just as with the Life Transformation Program, towards the end of the course, emphasis is given to what Hippocrates calls “taking it home”. It’s the chance to ask questions specific to your own everyday situation at home, and how you are going to make what you have learned work for you.

The real beauty of this one-off, globally-unique course is that everyone in that classroom will have a different experience and take on life; there were 14 different nationalities on my course, the age range was from 19 to late 60s, and some had experienced and overcome serious health challenges themselves, including cancer and fibromyalgia.

With such a diverse cultural and experiential melting pot, you cannot fail to broaden your perspective of both health and the world at large.

The ultimate cherries on the cake are the lectures from Hippocrates’ directors Drs Brian Clement and Anna-Maria Clement; you will quickly come to appreciate how precious every moment of their day is, and you will find yourself wanting to squeeze the maximum out of every nanosecond you spend with them. Make sure you do!

But it’s not just Brian and Anna-Maria who come with an impressive wealth of experience; globally-respected CV; you may be lucky enough to be lectured by Viktoras Kulvinskas, the original co-founder of Hippocrates, although he spends more of him time in Costa Rica at his own retreat these days. And who can blame him?

Likewise, Ellen Tart-Jensen, one of the world’s leading iridologists, who, when I was there, spent two action-packed days with us. (She also accidentally wrote on the wall instead of the whiteboard, but that’s another story!)

One particular high point for me was the so-called “business presentation”, which you present to your fellow classmates in the final week. I particularly liked it because throughout the 9-week program, it had me asking myself what I was going to do with all this information once I got back into the “real” world.

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This thought process was helped along greatly by the lectures we had from several business coaches who work in similar fields, including business basics and the kind of stuff you should be thinking about BEFORE you set up shop.

Your final presentation doesn’t have to be about hard facts and figures. In fact, if you’re still not sure of a business idea, you can talk instead about what the program has done for you. But either way, this exercise is a positive, emotional experience for everyone – a therapy in itself!

And as for graduation day? It’s even more of a tear-jerker, but for all the right reasons. It’s a joint celebration of all the highs and lows (detox can be tough, even when you’re relatively healthy), what you’ve experienced as a group, the friends you’ve made, and, most important of all, the presentation of the Health Educator badge you’ve worked so hard for. It’s a day you will remember with fondness and pride for the rest of your life.

Want to know more about my own personal experience? Thinking of enrolling on the Health Educator Program? Email me for more information or phone me on 07770 276610. Alternatively, call or email Hippocrates Health Institute direct, quoting my name as a reference.

REMEMBER: By contacting me directly, you will receive a $150 voucher to spend in the on-site store.

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What Will I Eat at Hippocrates?

Microgreens: part of the serious growing operation at Hippocrates (credit: Ceyda Tavuckular)
Microgreens: part of the serious growing operation at Hippocrates (credit: Ceyda Tavukcular)

I hesitate to use the word “diet”, as in today’s line of thinking, this means eating in a certain way for a temporary period. And yet “regime” sounds way too military.

But whatever you choose to call it, the ways in which you are nourished at Hippocrates are EXACTLY the ways you are coached to eat when you return home. This way is for life, not just for 3/9 weeks.

And believe me, by the time you come to the end of your stay, you will feel and look so great that you won’t want to revert to the McDonalds drive-thru or the sad-looking sandwich at your desk.

So, what do you get to eat every day?

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A typical meal at Hippocrates – re-fill as many times as you need!

For starters, everything listed below is 100% organic, 100% vegan, and 85% raw. And it’s all included in your package, whether you’re on the Health Educator Program or the Life Transformation Program:

  • Lemon water (served in jugs in the dining hall from 8.30am) will flush out your organs and support your body’s elimination mode (which is generally from 7am to 11am)
  • Two 16oz servings of Hippocrates Green Juice. This is served at 10am and 4pm daily. Get it while it’s fresh!
  • Every day, there is the option to have green juice with added garlic or ginger. And twice a week, you can add a couple of ounces of E3 live – arguably the purest, most easily-digestible blue-green algae in the world, sourced from Lake Klamath, Oregon, aka the stuff of miracles.
  • Two 2oz shots of wheatgrass (which you juice yourself at the Juice Bar). Drink first thing in the morning (before or after your freely-available lemon water), and at least half an hour before the evening meal, on an empty stomach.
  • And then, twice a day, from 12.30-2pm and 5.30-7pm, you’re going to be eating the raw stuff, which, as you probably guessed, involves a LOT of salad.

At only 85% raw, the Hippocrates “diet” does allow for a little raw “cookery” on three days a week, usually in the form of a soup (on a Sunday – hence where I got the inspiration for my Soup Sunday post), raw pizza every few weeks on a Friday, an AMAZING Indian selection on a Friday night every few weeks, tortillas every Saturday, and, for me, the ultimate: raw ice cream – either banana or nut – on a Saturday night. Wild horses, etc, etc.

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Lemon water: the best start to the day at Hippocrates (credit: Ceyda Tavuckular)

If you’re fasting every Wednesday, you have 3 lots of green juice, plus the water from a fresh, whole coconut (the top sliced off with a machete right in front of you). In the evening, you can choose from either a blended melon “soup”, or a raw green (savoury) soup.

All in all, listed below are the foods which are available every day for you to pick and mix. Go back in one sitting as many times as you want to. And don’t spare the sprouts: they should fill at least 50% of your plate at every meal:

Hippocrates Sauerkraut: Put a tablespoon of sauerkraut on your plate and, ideally, eat it first, as it is packed with digestive enzymes and pro-biotics to aid and maximise digestion. Kimchi, a slightly milder alternative with the same benefits, is also available from time to time.

The main players (nutritionally-dense; essential for detox and recovery):

  • Sunflower sprouts; pea sprout; buckwheat sprouts;
  • Fenugreek, clover; alfalfa; azuki; mung; lentil and broccoli sprouts; microgreens

Side dishes/fillers:

  • Avocado (served twice a week)
  • Nuts (walnut, almonds, pistachios) – served twice a week in various forms, including pâtés. Executive Chef Ken Blue’s walnut tacos are AMAZING (look out for this on a Friday lunchtime (but not every week), wrapped in a huge collard or iceberg leaf and served with salsa).
  • Dulse pieces (packed with nutrients and excellent for removing toxins and lessening the effects of radiation)
  • Carrots; asparagus; broccoli; spring onions (scallions); onion; cucumber; mini bell peppers; zucchini (courgettes) and radish
  • Most days, there are also imaginative, ready-mixed salads with dressing on too
  • Dressings and condiments: These are in abundance here, but at the risk of disappointing you, sorry, I’m not talking Heinz Tomato Ketchup or Salad Cream.
  • Hippocrates House Dressing: About the closest thing you can get to salad cream and still emerge with your halo intact.
  • Hippocrates Chilli Sauce: Great if you’re a spice/heat junkie like me. But be warned – a little goes a LONG way.
  • Other ingredients to make your own dressing with: Lemon wedges; raw turmeric root; turmeric powder; raw garlic; cayenne; garlic granules; kelp powder; Braggs liquid aminos; Nama Shoyu; dulse flakes; root ginger; powdered ginger; raw chillis; chilli seeds; garlic purée (packs a MAJOR punch; 1 tsp = 10-12 cloves); various oils, including olive, hemp, flax and avocado.

Dessert: Had you going there for a second, didn’t I? Refer to the remarks about sugar in the next section. But one thing you are encouraged to do if you do have a sweet tooth is to save a few bell peppers until you’ve finished the rest of your salad. Before long, they will taste just as sweet as a bowl of chocolate mousse. Your tastebuds WILL adapt. And faster than you think.

Fruit: If you’re ill in any way, as soon as you walk through the door, you won’t be getting ANY. The end. Why? Because it feeds cancer, tumours generally, and gives a hand to viruses and bacteria in their pledge to overrun your body. But if you don’t have any serious health complaints, it is served twice a week. Think berries, pears, mango, pineapple and papaya.

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What you WON’T be Eating and Why

Salt: Nope, not even the pink, Himalayan stuff. It’s high in inorganic sodium, which is not good for you generally. Instead, use the Nama Shoyu, dulse flakes, kelp or Bragg’s liquid aminos for your salt fix.

Sugar (in ANY form): The global addiction and one of the root causes of the majority of western diseases.

FACT: 90 per cent of people have difficulty controlling their blood sugar levels, even if they do not have diabetes.

Honey, Xylitol, Agave: they’re all the same thing sporting different labels. The only thing on tap here is stevia, which, admittedly, takes a bit of getting used to, but if you’re a sucker for the sweet stuff, that’s your lot.

Vinegar: In order to benefit from its healing properties, you are only meant to bathe in it. Or rinse your hair with it. Yes, even cider vinegar, which I was previously drinking by the gallon (-ish). It interferes with your digestion and causes fermentation in your gut. Use lime or lemon juice instead. This was a real tough one for me.

Cashews and peanuts: Both contain a toxin similar to that found in poison ivy and poison oak.

FACT: Cashews are the go-to nut for creating a creamy taste in many raw food recipes, when almonds work just as well.

Tomatoes: Well, not on the salad bar, at least. Why? Because they are a fruit, and as you will know, fruit should only be eaten ALONE, and on an EMPTY STOMACH. Tomatoes are, however, available alongside the fruit, twice a week – but only if you’ve been told fruit’s ok for you.

Nutritional yeast: I did cry about this one. It’s because it feeds candida. And because there are a LOT of guests at Hippocrates who discover they have this, it’s off limits for everyone.

Cacao: Apparently, the guy who introduced this foodstuff to the raw food world is kicking himself somewhat, because it turns out that in spite of being packed with beneficial anti-oxidants and trace minerals, it has a dark side too. We’re talking toxic qualities and caffeine (feed too much to a dog, and it’s curtains time – just take my word on that one). Carob, on the other hand, is fine, and you will find that ON OCCASION at Hippocrates, not least in the carob and date sauce they serve with Saturday night’s ice cream.

Conventional fruit juice: Come along, you know the score by now. Nutritional value: trace (at best). Sugar: enough to give a diabetic night sweats. Enzymes: Nil.

Coffee and teas containing caffeine: Just in case you’d not worked this out for yourself. This list includes green and white tea because both contain caffeine. But fruit and detox teas are in plentiful supply, as is a rather dubious-looking (and tasting) coffee alternative in a teabag.

FACT: All caffeinated drinks provide you with a false, short-lived energy, while robbing important minerals from your system. Just deal with it!

Want to know more? Thinking of going to Hippocrates? Email me for more information or phone me on 07770 276610. Alternatively, call or email Hippocrates Health Institute direct, quoting my name as a reference.

REMEMBER: If you contact me direct to book, you will receive a $150 voucher to spend at the on-site Hippocrates store.

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Want to go to Hippocrates? – Here’s what to do next

Hipp-how-to-bookIt’s easy! Just get in touch with me so I can tell you what the next step is.

If you have any questions or want to make a booking, email me, or call me on 07770 276610. If the voicemail says that I’m in the States, call 001 561 537 1272 instead.

Alternatively, call or email Hippocrates Health Institute direct, quoting my name as a reference.

To read all about it, read the other pages in this section too, as well as the many, many posts I wrote while on the Health Educator program (stick “Hippocrates” into the search box on the sidebar). You’re looking for any posts between 15 February, 2014 and 21 April, 2014.

And…

REMEMBER: By contacting me direct, you will receive a $150 to spend in the on-site Hippocrates store.

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Hippocrates Green Juice

Guests and students are given this healing, cleansing, energy-giving elixir TWICE a day for a reason, not least because it’s packed with protein, carbohydrates and enzymes.

16 oz are served each time. To make this yourself, simply rinse, juice and combine:

  • 4 oz. sunflower sprouts ( a generous handful)
  • 4 oz. pea sprouts (a generous handful)
  • 4 oz. cucumber (1- 1.5 cucumbers)
  • 4 oz. celery (4-5 sticks, including leaves)

For best results, use the Omega Juicer, used in the Health Educator houses and classroom at Hippocrates. European/UK users need the 8226 model; USA users need the 8006 model.

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Microgreens grown by the Health Eds in the organic garden