A quick look at what juicing is, its benefits and drawbacks, the best fruits and vegetables to juice, and the best juicers in the market.
What Is Juicing?
For the past 86 years, juicing has been one of the most popular methods used to eliminate harmful toxins in your body and make you feel rejuvenated on the inside. It dates back to the 1930s when Norman Walker created the first hydraulic juicer, known as the Norman Juicing Press.
Juicing involves extracting the nutrients and water found in raw fruits and vegetables, and discarding all of the fiber. Without having to spend energy digesting the fiber, your body is able to absorb these nutrients quicker. If you’re not a fan of eating fruits and vegetables, juicing is a quick, easy and efficient way to obtain the nutrients your body needs to stay healthy.
Raw Fruits and Vegetables vs Juicing
The main difference between juicing and eating raw fruits and vegetables is fiber. When you eat raw fruits and vegetables, your digestive system takes a longer time to digest them due to their fiber content. This helps satisfy your hunger for a longer period of time and helps better control your blood sugar levels.
When you juice you lose out on the fiber content found in fruits and vegetables, and this lack of protein can lead to an increased appetite and spikes in blood sugar. Juicing, however, does “digest” the food for you and gives your digestive system a break from working hard to process large meals.
Blending vs Juicing
Much like eating raw fruits and vegetables, the main difference between juicing and blending is fiber. When you blend fruits and vegetables, all of their contents remain in the blender. You are therefore able to obtain all of the nutrients in the food, and more fiber per serving. Another advantage of using a blender is that you’re able to blend more than fruits and vegetables. You can add nuts, ice, oils and protein powders to name a few. Blending fruits and vegetables does make the absorption of nutrients and sugar into your bloodstream slower, but it also helps stabilize blood sugar levels and helps keep you full for a longer period of time. One downside to using a blender is heat damage. Their blades run at higher speeds that can heat the fruits and vegetables slightly, and this could kill off beneficial enzymes.
Juicing enables you to absorb nutrients and sugars much faster than blending does, and can give you an instant rush of energy. Juicing also enables you to consume a higher amount of fruits and vegetables per serving. This means that you would have to drink a higher quantity of blended fruits and vegetables to obtain the same nutrients you would be able to get with one serving of a juiced whole food.
The Health Benefits Of Juicing
- Juicing helps lower your cholesterol and improve your overall health.
- Juicing is an easy way to obtain the daily amount of recommended fruits and vegetables you need.
- While juicing doesn’t make you feel full, it does nourish your cells with the water, vitamins and minerals extracted from fruits and vegetables.
- Juicing allows you to absorb nutrients quicker – As I mentioned earlier, juicing extracts nutrients and most of the water from fruits and vegetables and leaves behind fiber. Without having to spend energy digesting that fiber, your body is able to absorb nutrients quicker.
- It’s great for a quick energy boost.
- Juicing provides more phytochemicals – Vegetables contain phytochemicals, which protect cells from damage and help fight disease. This includes heart disease, asthma, cancer, diabetes, digestive system ailments and allergies.
- Diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease and malnutrition make it difficult to digest fiber, and this can lead to malnutrition because many nutrients aren’t easily absorbed by the body. Juicing is a great way to obtain the necessary nutrients your body needs.
The Drawbacks Of Juicing
- Juicing requires more fruits and vegetables per serving compared to blending.
- Due to the lack of fiber, your hunger is not fully satiated. This results in an increased appetite, and can lead to poor dietary choices.
- Juicing separates fiber from the juice. Without the fiber, the sugars in the fruit or vegetable move into your bloodstream right away. This can cause an increase in your blood glucose levels and can cause you to gain weight.
- Juicing reduces the amount of calories you burn, because there is no fiber to digest.
- Juicing fruits with a high sugar content is not good for diabetics, because too much of the whole food fiber has been lost/removed. This concentrates the sugar and could increase a diabetic’s blood sugar level. Foods with a high sugar content include carrots and beets. If you are a diabetic, be sure to consult your doctor before going on a juice cleanse.
- Kidney patients that ingest a higher amount of produce than is recommended can experience dangerous side effects from elevated levels of potassium and other minerals.
- Being on a juice cleanse for a long period of time will result in loss of muscle mass, diarrhea and constipation. You should see a dietitian or doctor if you intend on being on a juice cleanse for a prolonged amount of time to ensure you still get the nutrients and proteins your body needs, and to avoid getting sick.
The Best Fruits and Vegetables To Juice
Green leafy vegetables are the best to juice. It’s better to limit the amount of juiced fruit you consume, because it’s higher in calories and sugar. If you would like to enhance the flavor of your juice, you could add apples, kiwis, a handful of berries, lemons and fresh ginger. Vegetables like broccoli, beetroot, carrots and zucchini do not combine well with fruit due to their high starch content. Starchy foods should be eaten alone, because they are digested by enzymes different from those found in any other food group. Furthermore, combining starches and fruits can cause fermentation and gas.
Vegetables and fruits that are perfect to juice include:
- Swiss chard
- Mustard greens
- Romaine lettuce
- Red leaf lettuce
- Dandelion greens
- Sweet potato
- Herbs (ginger, mint, cilantro)
- Beats (including the stems and greens)
- Citrus fruits
Choosing A Juicer
Juicing can be done by hand or by using a juicing machine. While juicing by hand might be cheaper, it does take a substantially longer amount of time. I would highly recommend using a juicing machine instead of juicing by hand, because it’s less time-consuming.
There are two main types of juicers: centrifugal and masticating.
Centrifugal juicers grind and strain produce at high speeds (between 3,000-16,000 revolutions per minute), and this method produces juice at a faster rate. This juicer is best suited for people who want to obtain juice as fast as possible, and people new to juicing due its simplistic design.
- Centrifugal juicers produce juice at a faster rate than masticating juicers.
- Centrifugal juicers have wider chutes. This enables them to juice whole foods, making them much easier to work with.
- The fast-spinning blades of a centrifugal juicer heat and kill the nutrients and enzymes in your produce. The juice therefore tastes diluted.
- Its fast-spinning motor traps air and oxidizes the juice, leaving it with a metallic taste.
- Juice obtained from a centrifugal juicer has to be consumed immediately and cannot be stored for a prolonged length of time due to oxidization.
- Centrifugal juicers can’t juice leafy vegetables.
- They have a lot of parts to clean, and are noisier.
A masticating juicer is also known as a single-gear juicer. This juicer “chews” and grinds produce to a pulp. Masticating juicers spin produce at a slow rate (40-160 revolutions per minute), and this method helps preserve phytochemicals and enzymes. The slower movement of the blade breaks the fruit or vegetables cell membrane open to release more nutrients, and also reduces the chance of the juice oxidizing. Masticating juicers are the best fit for people looking to obtain as many nutrients as they can from the produce they plan on juicing.
- A masticating juicer is able to obtain at least 99% of nutrients and enzymes from produce. This causes the juice to have a sweeter taste.
- Masticating juicers have a higher production yield.
- The slow spinning preserves the freshness of your produce, and this means the juice can be preserved for a longer period without oxidizing.
- Masticating juicers are able to juice leafy greens, while centrifugal juicers cannot.
- Masticating juicers have fewer parts, and are therefore much easier to clean.
- Masticating juicers are almost silent.
- Due to its single gear and blade, masticating juicers work slower than centrifugal juicers.
- Their feeding chutes are smaller, so you have to cut your fruits and vegetables in pieces before juicing.
I would personally recommend purchasing a masticating juicer. They are generally more expensive than centrifugal juicers, but their benefits definitely outweigh their cost.
The Final Squeeze
For those who don’t enjoy eating their fruits and vegetables, juicing is a quick, easy and efficient way of getting the proper nutrients in your body to improve your overall health and well-being.
Susan McGee, a nutrition specialist, a homemaker and above all a health-conscious mother. In today’s world it is quite difficult to find out the best juicers,healthy food tips & recipes with the overwhelm informations you find in online. Hence, Juicer Lab is here to make your life easy. This informative website offers you a wide range of information about different types of Juicers, best recipes, healthy food tips to guide you in the right direction.