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Juicing for better health

Laguna Beach native starts organic juice business after having nowhere to satisfy her own cravings.

April 26, 2012|By Joanna Clay
  • Jamie Jensen pours Living Juice’s “Heart of Gold” mix into containers in the Santa Ana kitchen where they blend the special cleansing juices. Jensen is a Laguna Beach native.
Jamie Jensen pours Living Juice’s “Heart… (DON LEACH, Coastline…)

Although a Quarter Pounder with cheese might sound more appetizing to some than an all-juice diet, Living Juice founder Jamie Jensen swears that once you try her juice, it's hard to go back.

While a sculptor in New York City in the mid-2000s, the Laguna Beach native said she felt sick and unhealthy in every way imaginable — from her mood and everyday energy to having difficulty sleeping.

She was turned on to juices by her yoga instructor and decided to try a 10-day cleanse. Jensen said she immediately felt her cravings, bloating, agitation and sluggishness disappear.

She started to incorporate juices into her diet, and when she moved back to Laguna Beach last year, she felt like she had nowhere to go to satisfy her need for organic, raw, unpasteurized, cold-pressed juice.

Since January, Jensen has been producing Living Juice in a kitchen in Santa Ana with a small team of juicers, making each batch to order. Prior to launching the brand this year, she spent months in her Laguna kitchen perfecting the blends she knew and experimenting with flavors she never thought of.

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She doesn't have a professional culinary background, but she said she's been in the kitchen since she was a kid. One thing is evident when talking to Jensen — she knows a thing or two about her juice.

"The flavors are impeccable," she said, as she points to a freshly made batch of "Heart of Gold," which contains tomato, spinach, olive oil, cayenne and sea salt. The juice, which has a hearty tomato soup consistency, can be served like gazpacho — cold in a bowl, she said.

Some juices are sweet, some sour, some savory — some are heavy and some are much lighter.

"The Beat," a sweet, tangy juice, contains beets, cucumbers, celery, spinach, kale, lemon and Peruvian Maca, an ingredient high in antioxidants that promotes weight loss.

During the Living Juice cleanse, a person will consume eight bottles a day.

Living Juice offers three cleanses: a one-day, a three-day and a five-day. If a cleanse isn't for you, Jensen recommends incorporating a couple of bottles of juice into your daily diet, along with two meals, with her "Out of the Box" option.

The health benefits include: craving reduction, better sleep, detoxification, increased energy, increased mental clarity, improved skin and self esteem, and a better relationship with food.

The cleanse isn't easy for all her customers, though, she said.

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