Stress can do horrendous things to the body. We know this is true thanks to seemingly constant pop-culture articles touting the import of good sleep and nutrition to help keep stress at bay, but beyond the casual headache or stomach upset, the effects of anxiety during high-stress times can actually be fatal.
In The Link Between Religion and Health by Harold G. Koenig and Harvey J. Cohen, there’s an entire chapter devoted to the diseases we can bring upon ourselves resulting from environmental and situational stress we put on our immune systems and what we can do about them. And what we learn is that diagnoses like Lupus and other auto-immune diseases (e.g., rheumatoid arthritis, Grave’s disease, chronic fatigue syndrome) can be attacked from a variety of angles: medication, meditation, kundalini yoga, building an alkaline environment in the body with anti-inflam foods, drinking cold-pressed juice.
For the purpose of this feature, it’s that last method we’re most interested in (natch), as we’re honored to share the tale of Andrea Millsap, a woman who in fact used cold-pressed juice—The Juice Standard’s cold-pressed juice, to be exact— to battle the Lupus she developed after some achingly, life-altering family events. Battle…and win.
If you’ve ever wondered whether TJS’ juices and nutmilks really are all that, read this dynamic account of Andrea Millsap and see just how far she’s come. We guarantee it’s been a long way, Baby.
All About Andrea
I was born and raised… here in Las Vegas, Nevada. I am a one of the rare natives: I attended private school at St.Francis De Sales and then went on to Bishop Gorman. (Go GAELS!) I attended University here, as well. I received my undergraduate degree from UNLV.
This is when I knew that Las Vegas would be my forever home: I have travelled both in and out of the county but always knew Vegas was home…and not because I was born here. I love Vegas because it is a 24-hour town (…not that I utilize that anymore!). I like having the option to go to the grocery store or anywhere else in the middle of the night if I want. I decided after college to reside in Vegas.
My daily mantra is…I’ve had this up on my wall since my teenage years:
Favorite Vegas spot that never gets old is…Peppermill.
People who inspire me daily are…my parents. They are my world. My dad was my best friend and taught me life lessons that have made me who I am. My mom is literally my mirror to life. Love them! My father passed away 3 years ago this July 10. he is were my “juice journey” began.
Something people would be surprised to learn about me: I have eight children AND I still find the time to work a full-time job and do the things I love to do.
About Andrea’s Work
When people ask me what I do as my job, this is how I explain it: I am a pharmaceutical representative, and I help to educate and provide medication to local providers for their patients.
Worst spelling of Pfizer: Fizar.
In my personal opinion about the pharmaceutical industry on the whole, I believe it gets a bad rap because…of the cost of medication. People truly don’t understand how much money it costs to bring a medication to market…and that there is a cost associated with the medication once it’s approved to market the medication.
Also, people are misguided about who makes the rules on meds and why the cost and lack of availability are truly so high. If people researched this information and how it works, they would be truly upset. Individuals also don’t realize how much money and medication is provided through patient-assistance programs to make sure patients have access to their medications.
What I’ve learned about myself in this career is this: This position has made me stronger, and I’ve learned that your health is your responsibility.
The most surprising thing I’ve learned or the thing that has been re-affirmed for me is…that being told NO is so motivating to me. I thrive in challenging environments.
The advice I’d give my younger work self is…Don’t ever quit or let other people decide your path for you.
Andrea On Health
The biggest change I’ve witnessed in the Las Vegas world of healthy living is…the rise of juice companies, restaurants that provide clean food and the education about genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
The way I eat clean during my busy workweek is this: I work from my car, so I make sure I juice…with juice from the Standard, of course!
The fruits and veggies you will always find in my kitchen are…apples, spinach and kale.
My fave guilty-pleasure food? Ughhhhhh: Pizza from Metro.
Andrea On Juice
We understand that there were some radical things that happened in your life that brought you to The Juice Standard. We’d love you to share your story….About 2 years ago I discovered cold-pressed juice. After my dad passed away, my immune system failed. The sheer shock and loss destroyed not only my soul but my body. For months, I wasn’t sure what was wrong; but I began to feel my body shutting down. I went to the doctor and was later diagnosed with Lupus.
In my quest to get better and take back my life, I began researching Lupus and things that enhance the quality of life in patients. The most important thing I kept coming across was diet. I then began researching clean eating and all the elders talked most about juicing and herbal supplements. And I began drinking cold-pressed juice after trying every medicine under the sun. I was not getting better.
Some symptoms of lupus are…excruciating joint and muscle pain. It’s a pain so intense, I can’t get out of bed at times, or up and down the stairs. There is extreme fatigue from doing nothing. And, skin rashes from the sun, and just in general.
The hardest way Lupus has affected my life is…it’s lowered my energy level, which steals time and events from me. At times, the decreased energy level doesn’t allow me to do all the things in one day that I would like to. And at one point, Lupus affected my job. I wasn’t able to work for months.
The one thing I wish people knew about Lupus is…that the pain is real. Although the death incident rate has improved, patients die young—40 years of age, and sometimes younger. The primary cause of death with Lupus is organ failure…kidneys, typically. Lupus is not always understood by individulas that don’t have it because it’s not something they can see like a broken bone.
The first time I drank green juice I thought…“Ohhhhh nooo: Not me, too! I don’t want people to think I’m drinking it because it’s a new trend and all the cool kids are doing it!”
I kept drinking cold-pressed because…it changed my life. My blood work was better, I had more energy, my symptoms were going away. I felt alive again because I was putting living food in my body.
Most shocking difference in my Lupus treatment before juice and after juice was…I was able to stop taking all medication.
True or False: “It was hard looking my Pfizer colleagues and clients in the eye and telling them that juice was helping me more than their stinkin’ meds.” True. True.
As of this writing, I’m currently on maternity leave. Here’s how I incorporated juice into my life: Prior to being pregnant I tried to have two juices a day with my supplements and appropriate foods. While pregnant, helped with my energy and the small Lupus flares I’ve had during pregnancy.
True or False: “As a new mother, I think cold-pressed juice is helping me keep up my energy.” Yes: True.
My thoughts about The Juice Standard? It’s is the gold standard for cold-pressed juice! You can taste and see the difference. I know it has helped and has continued to change my life.
My advice to a newbee juicer is…work with the team at The Juice Standard to find what flavors work for you. Tell them your situation and allow them to customize a plan that works for you. Don’t quit!