What is wheatgrass juice, which has started to be known as a superfood due to its high nutritional value, how is it consumed, why is it healthy... We got the answers to all these questions from Deniz Yüksel Ovalı and Sofia Vassalo, the founders of Ancient Greens, who brought us to us with heirloom seeds and a sustainable production method. .
What makes wheatgrass healthy?
Wheatgrass; It is a plant with extremely high nutritional value, which is formed by the germination of wheat seeds within 7-12 days after meeting with water. It is usually consumed in the form of wheatgrass juice or powder, as it is quite fibrous and difficult to digest. In addition to 70% chlorophyll, it contains vitamins A, C and E, iron, calcium, magnesium, selenium, potassium and many enzymes.
The most alkaline foods, including wheatgrass, are said to be 20 times more nutritious than other green vegetables. Is wheatgrass really alkaline?
Wheatgrass is one of the foods that alkalize the body. It's true that almost all vegetables have alkalizing effects when eaten in the right way. Most are actually alkalizing to varying degrees from medium to high. Fresh vegetable juice mixes have the highest alkalizing effect. This effect; It increases when vegetable juices are cold-pressed and consist of the most alkaline vegetables such as wheatgrass, parsley, celery stalk.
Cooking and freezing using domestic freezers destroy live enzymes in foods; reduces their nutritional and alkalizing potential. For this reason, the shock freezing method we use in Ancient Greens is extremely critical. Whole nutritional profile, vitamins and enzymes; It is frozen until the moment Jubes is activated with water and consumed.
In addition, pesticides used in agriculture reduce the alkalizing power of foods. At Ancient Greens, our wheatgrass is pesticide- and chemical-free, much stronger alkalis than vegetables conventionally grown on very large scales.
One of the factors that sets Ancient Greens Jubes apart is that it is naturally sweet - but sugar-free, unlike the bitter wheatgrass juices you may have tried before. Refined sugar makes the body acidic; but Jubes is a non-acidic sweet drink.
Why are alkaline foods important?
When foods are broken down by our body, they produce either acidic or alkaline compounds. A diet rich in alkaline foods supports alkalinity, or homeostasis, which is the natural state of our body. This does not mean that acidic foods should not be consumed at all in a healthy diet; but they should be consumed in limited quantities. Because, long-term excessive consumption of these foods may result in relatively acidic body pH-related disorders such as chronic metabolic acidosis. Wheatgrass, like many vegetables and fruits, alkalizes the body and contains numerous beneficial nutrients.
How did you discover the magical, energetic and healing benefits of wheatgrass?
Wheatgrass is a must-have food for anyone who is aware of the importance of health and does deep research on this subject. It is also the plant with the highest amount of chlorophyll in the world. This allows the body to easily get the many different nutritional values it needs. We were both introduced to wheatgrass at an early age thanks to our passion for this subject, and our passion turned into business.
Where and how is the grass produced? What are the biggest challenges of upbringing?
In fact, there is a perception like the water of the grass we know about Jubes; but it is not. The challenges actually increase as we maintain our quality and aim for the best. The content of the product you bought; It depends on many different factors, such as the type and quality of the seed, the soil you grow, the risk of mold, weather conditions and the amount of irrigation. We have minimized the risk of influencing these factors as we grow the products in our own greenhouse in a controlled environment.
What are the health benefits of using ancestral seeds?
Inheritance seed doesn't just mean healthy food. The local seed is our traditions and culture. It is the legacy of our local seed ancestors and the values we will bequeath to the next generations. We think that it should be everyone's duty to support local seeds and organic agriculture, which cannot be separated from local seeds, in order to leave a more livable world to future generations in our world, which is becoming more and more chemical, diseases are increasing and natural resources are decreasing.
Ancestral seeds adapt to the harsh conditions of nature in their region and over time, they contain the characteristic features of the region they were planted. Although pesticides are produced to kill harmful organisms in the soil, these pesticides also harm beneficial organisms and humans. It has now been proven that genetically modified seeds are also harmful to human health. But with our ancestral seeds and our way of production, we are based on human health. Foods produced with heirloom seeds; Since they have high nutritional values and do not undergo chemical processing, they protect the human body from harmful chemicals.
Sustainability is another fundamental principle in the use of ancestral seeds. Thanks to ancestral seeds, the seeds needed for the next year can be obtained from the product we grow. In this way, ancestral seeds that will be passed on for generations are preserved.
What kind of benefits did you see in your own life after you started consuming grass juice?
In fact, health is a work of balance, and wheatgrass juice definitely makes for a balanced routine. We can say that we see a serious effect on our energy level, especially on our immune system. Of course, the observed effects are from person to person; body, varies according to age and gender.
How can we add grass juice to our daily diet?
It can be consumed alone as well as with many different recipes; We are working hard on this. Especially Ancient Greens Jubes also have sweetening properties. Smoothies, drinks and even different appetizers... It contains many varieties, especially Turkish cuisine, we add a new recipe every day and the result is very successful.
What are your rituals to stay healthy besides drinking wheatgrass juice?
Of course we start the day with Jubes! But other than that, drinking plenty of water and a good night's sleep are the best rituals that people will create for their own health. We always think that listening to our body is the greatest favor we can do for ourselves.
How important is sustainable agriculture and zero waste to Ancient Greens?
Our starting point is a sustainable production that respects people and nature. Ancestry seeds, quality soil and sustainable production in parallel with the region are among our basic principles. We do our own permaculture and work with a zero waste system in our greenhouse. When all of these values come together, it becomes the Ancient Greens brand. In other words, we want to create value not only with wheatgrass juice, but also with our production and our sensitivity to this issue.
Deniz Yuksel Ovalı – Ancient greens Co-Founder
After graduating from Koç University, Department of Economics, Deniz Yüksel Ovalı completed her master's degree in Design Management in Milan. During his stay in Italy, he took part in many different projects with his sustainable and creative designs related to history, art and nature. Deniz Yüksel Ovalı, who continued her education at Ann Wigmore Natural Health Institute in Puerto Rico, where she went after Italy, returned to Turkey to realize her studies on wheatgrass.
Sofia Vassalo - Co-Founder of Ancient Greens
Having studied Design and Management at Parsons The New School for Design in the United States, Vassalo moved to Turkey in 2011. After receiving the Natural Herbal Nutrition certificate from the online training platform eCornell, she started to provide consultancy training to both individuals and institutions by combining Ayurveda principles with the basics of natural herbal foods. As a result of his studies on wheatgrass and microgreens, he founded Ancient Greens with Deniz Yüksel Ovalı.