What Are the Benefits of Wheatgrass? An Interview With Dr. Brian Clement of the Hippocrates Health Institute

Author and health advocate says benefits of wheatgrass are a boon for Robeks Smoothie franchise customers

Dr. Brian Clement has been studying nutrition and the benefits of healthy foods for four decades. For more than 30 years, he has helped lead the Hippocrates Health Institute in West Palm Beach, FL, founded by wheatgrass nutrition pioneer Ann Wigmore. The Florida health institute, founded in 1956, introduces clients to a “living food diet” full of fresh, enzyme- and vitamin-rich fruits, vegetables and sprouts that contribute to overall health.

Dr. Clement shares that passion with Robeks, which offers wheatgrass, smoothies and juices made from naturally ripe ingredients.

What sparked your interest in naturopathic medicine?

I was a big fat obese American smoking three packs a day at age 20, and I met a friend’s friend who was into yoga. I thought he was weird, and that it was strange, but I gradually realized that he was very unique. I studied in Europe, where I had mentors and physicians who were well versed in natural medicine. Americans are finally catching up to this, but Europeans and Asians are much more steeped in this. I visited Hippocrates and met Ann Wigmore in 1975. This year, we’re having a monument built to her in her native Lithuania. She’s the one who founded Hippocrates and brought us the wheatgrass movement, and she and Dr. Norman Walker launched the juice movement in this country. Hippocrates pioneered the green juices because we realized the incredible health benefits from years of dealing with people in poor health.

Grasses are a very fundamental food, which is why wheat has always been called the staff of life. Now we can show that wheat contains traces of almost every element that naturally occurs on the periodic table. What wheat and other grasses do is collect the sun’s energy at a very high level thanks to having chlorophyll in a very condensed way.

When you blend it, juice it on the spot and use it, we know now through research that it benefits the body in many ways. This is why something that’s not the most tasty fluid in the world has remained one of the top health foods for people. They know what they feel like after they drink it.

How did it help your own health?

It’s magnificent. I’m 62, and I honestly feel a whole lot better than I did when I was younger. I lift weights, and I travel 150 days a year or more all over the world to lecture. I’ve also been publishing several books a year. I’m a father of four with three grandkids, and I don’t feel any need to slow down.

What makes wheatgrass healthy?

Wheatgrass is full of phytonutrients that are great for cellular health. And your cellular health is your larger health. Ideally people should drink 2 ounces in the morning and 2 ounces in the evening. There have been studies that show drinking one ounce of wheatgrass is like eating 2 and a half pounds of vegetables.

What makes wheatgrass especially healthy?

There are a few big differences. First, if you’re talking about a green bean that you buy at the grocery store, you can assume that it was picked somewhere else, and you may be eating it two weeks later. The nutrients are pretty much gone at that point. With wheatgrass, it’s growing right up to the point where it is put into the juicer, so you get all of the live enzymes and the nutrition. Wheatgrass is also a young version of the plant, so the nutrients are concentrated.

What does it mean for a food to be a live food?

That’s a good question, because a lot of people confuse “live foods” and “raw foods.” A raw food may not be processed, but it may also have been picked weeks ago and has lost most of its nutritional value by the time it reaches you. A live food was still growing just before you bought it, picked and put on your plate.

Robeks smoothie and juice franchises clip wheatgrass and juice it for customers, providing them with the highest nutritional value. We also have our produce flash frozen before it is shipped — a process that preserves nutrients and enzymes and allows us to serve fruit and vegetables that were ripe when they were picked — not “ripened” by chemicals.

Robeks uses only premium ingredients, and our refusal to add sugar to any of our products has made us a leader among healthy businesses. To learn more about Robeks and how you can profit by making it easier for your community to eat healthy, download our free franchise report at www.RobeksFranchise.com.