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Dr. Tina Jones dedicates life to spreading awareness of the benefits of fruits and vegetables for a healthier life
The loss of her mother to heart disease drives Dr. Tina Jones to help others live a healthier life. She shares Juice Plus+ whole food based nutrition with patients because of the benefits of fruits and vegetables for a healthy lifestyle.
Dr. Jones always wanted to be a doctor. She went on to become the only African-American woman in her first medical school class. Since then, she dedicated her life to raising awareness of better nutrition and healthier lifestyles among others. Dr. Jones has practiced internal medicine in Smyrna, Georgia for nearly 25 years and serves on the staff of Emory-Adventist Hospital in Atlanta.
“I wanted to be a doctor as far back as I can remember,” she says. “I think it had to do with the fact that I was sickly as a kid. I just knew that I wanted to help people feel better.”
Dr. Jones's desire to be a physician grew even stronger when she was 13 and her mother had a heart attack at the age of 39.
“We had to take her to three different hospitals in a 24-hour period before anyone realized that this young woman had had a heart attack,” she says. “Every emergency room we went to, they just sent her back home again. It was a horrible thing to watch because she was suffering.”
“Over the years, she was in and out of the hospital many times,” Jones continues. “She died when she was 56. I lost someone very dear to me and my children haven't had the opportunity to ever see their grandmother − nor she them."
Her mother's failing health was not the only problem Dr. Jones faced as a child.
“Growing up in the ‘60s as a young African-American girl was challenging,” she admits. “There was turmoil around the country and in Philadelphia, too, where I lived. I had to travel by bus to attend school in another neighborhood. I remember the stares at the new school and the whispered conversations about me on the bus. Fortunately, my parents always told me I could be anything I wanted to be and go anyplace in this world that I wanted to go. And I believed it.”
Dr. Jones still wanted to be a doctor.
“I started medical school in the early ‘70s,” she recalls. “I was the only African-American female in my first medical school class. To be an African-American woman in medical school was a real privilege. I realized that I had been given an extraordinary opportunity so I just worked very hard and tried to do my very best in all things. I wanted people to see how much I deserved to be there and what a good job I could do.”
Like most medical students of her era, Dr. Jones didn't learn much about nutrition but she came to believe that her mother's health problems were rooted in her diet.
“My mother was a wonderful cook but she was a Southern cook,” Dr. Jones says. “Her family was from Orangeburg, South Carolina, and she cooked and ate Southern food her whole life. It's what I grew up eating, too.”
So when did Dr. Jones start to change her own diet?
“I knew that I had to make some lifestyle choices – some changes in the way I did things – if I wanted to be there for my children,” she says. “So I studied, and I learned. I learned that the nutritional quality of the foods we eat is very instrumental in helping us have better health outcomes. I learned the importance of adding a lot more fruits and vegetables to our diets on a consistent, daily basis.”
As a young mother, Dr. Jones began to shape the tastes of her own two children.
“When they were babies, I would fix their fruits and vegetables from scratch myself,” she says. “And so they acquired a taste for fruits and vegetables very early in life. When I first learned about Juice Plus+, I knew immediately that I needed to add it to my own diet, as well as my family's. We've all been taking Juice Plus+ since 1996.”
Jones reminds us, "If you want to be well, you have to eat well − and most people just don't eat well. They don't eat fruits and vegetables consistently and they don't eat a wide variety. Juice Plus+ provides that bridge − that safety gap − so that they're able to get whole-food-based nutrition from a wide variety of fruits and vegetables every day.”
What does Living Life to the Plus+ mean to Dr. Tina Jones?
“It means being able to pursue your hopes and dreams because you feel well enough – and are well enough – to do it,” she says. “It means having the good health to live life to the very fullest, watching your children grow up, going to their graduations and weddings, watching them fulfill their dreams. Children need their parents and they need their grandparents. I don't want children to lose a parent too early, like I did. I want them to feel nurtured and loved at every important crossroad of their lives.”
Like many health professionals, Dr. Jones shares Juice Plus+ with others as a Juice Plus+ representative.
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