Wife, mother, and Chief Joy Officer at Joy Juice Culture, Chantel Jones Bigby. In an effort to reverse her health problems and find more joy in her life, she started her journey towards a healthy living about ten years ago. Chantel was immediately attracted after watching a documentary about the benefits of juicing and a plant-based diet. She spent eight years doing research, experimenting with recipes, and learning how to produce nutritious meals that she and her family would enjoy. She succeeded in reversing hypertension, high cholesterol, lowering her A1C, and naturally dissolving her fibroids as a result of her efforts. Chantel is presently passionate about imparting her expertise and assisting others in achieving comparable success in their own health journeys.
Grayson Mask: Can you tell us where you grew up and how you ended up in Dallas?
Chantel Jones Bigby: My hometown is Detroit, Michigan. Three weeks after I had my undergraduate degree, I relocated to Dallas after receiving a job offer from an internship. corporate recruiting. I was given the chance to select my destination from a list of five possibilities, and Dallas was one of the selections. I made the decision to move here because I wanted a fresh start and to challenge myself in a kicking off my professional career in a new state. I imagined staying in Dallas for a couple of years and then trying a new market to explore, however I fell in love with city. And here I am, preparing to celebrate my 15th Anniversary as a Dallas transplant.
GM: Did your family support the idea of plant-powered foods while you were growing up, or did you learn about it on your own?
CJB: The concept of plant-powered eating wasn’t really a thing, though of course I was encouraged to consume healthier foods, I very much ate a typical American diet growing up. It wasn’t until I started having health issues like high blood pressure and high cholesterol that I became curious about how to fix them without medication. When I had my daughter, I became more concerned about my health and discovered the healing power of plant-based foods through movies like “What the Health”. I started juicing and after about a year of consistently juicing and making small lifestyle changes, my blood pressure and cholesterol normalized. This experience inspired me to share this information with others and I became an evangelist for plant-based foods.
GM: Can you describe the reception to your previous juicing classes and events at Pan African Connection?
CJB: The reception was great! I was shocked by the number of people who showed up and how curious they were. It wasn’t just about answering questions, but also giving them the chance to taste the juice and realize that it can taste good if it’s made well. The full room was overwhelming and added fuel to my fire to keep spreading the gospel of juicing and plant-powered food. I realized that this is bigger than just making juice; many people are suffering in silence and need help. Additionally, with the pandemic, people’s joy has been depleted, so it’s about getting back to good health and maximizing overall happiness. This was also an opportunity to represent and connect with people in a transparent conversation. I’m shocked by the success and will be doing more events soon.
GM: You mentioned offering classes to make certain unappealing foods taste good. Could you share some of the flavors your business offers? And have there been any surprises in terms of customer reception?
CJB: All of our flavors have been well-received, but it took me seven plus years to perfect the recipes because I’m a picky eater. I believe that taste is just as important as nutrition, especially for people who may not be motivated to eat healthy. I wanted to create juices that I enjoyed drinking and that were also good for me. One of our most popular flavors is beet juice, which I used to dislike from other sources. I call it beet fruit punch because it tastes like a natural fruit punch, but of course all natural and zero added sugar. People are always shocked when they try it. Another surprising flavor is our sweet potato juice with pineapple and carrot. Recently, we introduced a new flavor with pineapple and jalapeno, which not only shocked people’s taste buds, but also offers health benefits such as improving blood flow and lowering blood pressure and cholesterol. Our approach is always about taste and health benefits.
GM: What are the main benefits of increasing juicing in someone’s life and have your clients noticed any changes?
CJB: The biggest benefit that I see from my juices is the joy they bring to people. When you taste it, you just feel good, and that feeling of joy and vibrational energy in our bodies creates a space for us to do more better things for ourselves. It changes our mood, and in the midst of a pandemic and life’s challenges, it’s crucial to have moments of joy. By experiencing the joy from my juices, it creates an appetite for people to seek more joy in their careers, relationships and health. The feedback I’ve received has been incredible. People are surprised they can actually enjoy a healthy drink. My biggest success story is my husband, who is anti-fruit and anti-vegetable, now drinks my juice every morning. Other women have shared that their husbands, who also don’t eat fruits and vegetables, are now drinking my juice. That’s what keeps me going every day.
GM: Can you tell us more about the Restore Joy Cleanse and the group chat mentioned on your website?
CJB: Sure, the Restore Joy Cleanse is a three-day juice cleanse that I started after successfully completing one myself last summer. I found it challenging to stay motivated and encouraged during the cleanse, so I created a community for those who want to do it together. The group chat, which we’ll be using through an app called GroupMe, will allow us to check in with each other throughout the three days and keep each other accountable and motivated.
GM: What are the main objectives of your business at the moment?
CJB: My business has scaled much faster than I anticipated, and while I am still figuring things out, I am focused on sharing more joy and juice with people. Although it is a for-profit business, I am considering turning it into a profit-for-purpose business. This means that I want to support social initiatives to help people live healthier and joy-filled lives. I am also teaching a juice boss workshop to kids this week, which is part of my goal to use this as both a health and workforce initiative. Ultimately, I want to use this business to break generational cycles of disease and show that profits can be used to do good socially.
GM: Were there any other projects you’re excited about for your business moving forward?
CJB: Yes, I really want to work on going into markets and collaborating with organizations such as Workforce Adult & Youth Initiatives. I want to help others build a business that brings them joy every day like mine does. I don’t have a full plan yet, but I’m trusting that collaboration opportunities will show up. I plan on hosting more workshops and classes to teach people how to incorporate juicing into their joy and wellness practice.
GM: It seems like your business is on the fast track for the DFW community with the upcoming kitchen and partnerships.
CJB: Yes, I’m really excited about that. My big vision is to see my juice on the shelf, in community spaces and in schools. Juicing has inspired me in so many ways, especially as a mom who stopped dreaming. I want to encourage other women to dream again. Juice is one thing, but joy is the main ingredient that everyone deserves in their life.
My name is Grayson Mask and I'm the host of The Platinum Mask podcast, blog, and YouTube channel where I interview local Dallas-Fort Worth creatives, activists, and entrepreneurs. I'm striving to do more media collaborations and submitting pieces to other magazines.