The Power of Juicing

Well Dad’s trip to Chicago was cancelled due to the weather, so no Museum of Science and Industry for me. :( Oh well. On another note, I’ve been wanting to post about my recent juicing escapades!

Juice

About a month ago I dusted off my Cuisinart juicer and began to get back into juicing again! I absolutely LOVE fresh juice in the morning, but the hassle of making it and cleaning all of the equipment can be a huge turn off to some people. I realize that just about every recommendation out there says to drink your juice within 24 hours of making it to absorb the most vitamins and minerals and that the longer it sits, you start to lose some of them – but let’s be realistic. I’ve found what works best for me, is to make 4 juices at a time. I store them in air-tight mason jars in my fridge and drink them over the course of the next 4 days. Should I make fresh juice every single morning? Probably. But I’m being realistic for my lifestyle and to only have to juice 2 times/week and spend less time on cleaning my juicer makes sense for me – even if it is at the expense of a few lost vitamins and minerals. We can’t all be perfect.

juicer

I recently bought this amazing juice book, uniquely named The Big Book of Juices and I’m totally in love with it. I’ve started from page one and have been juicing my way through all of the recipes Julie and Julia style. The recipes are super easy and are sorted by juice base (apple, orange, grapefruit, etc.) which is awesome. Not to mention the second half of the book is all smoothie recipes which my Vitamix can’t wait to make for me!

So what’s so great about juicing?

  • Absorb all of the fabulous vitamins and minerals from fruits and vegetables in a highly concentrated fashion. Yes I am aware that you are stripping away most of the fiber (although I like to make my juice really pulpy), but I believe there is a time and place for juice and a time and place for smoothies (where all of the fiber remains in tact). Juicing helps the body “pre-digest” nutrients to aid in better absorption. Keep in mind you can also decrease the amount of natural sugar in your juice by picking your fruits and vegetables wisely.
  • More efficient consumption of our fellow friends – fruits and vegetables. A friend of mine and I challenged ourselves during the month of February to consume 9 fruits and vegetables a day – a rather tall order. I have to admit, my morning juice made this quite easy with nearly 4-5 servings of fruit in every 16-ounce jar of juice!
  • Increase your variety of fruits and vegetables in your diet. I can’t eat a salad for breakfast – I guess it’s not in my genes. But I can drink a fruit/vegetable juice or a green smoothie – which for me is close enough! Vitamins and minerals have healing properties in the body and the more we can get at each meal, the better. I have been around my fair share of sick people this past month (with the flu and winter colds out of control this season) and (knock on wood) have yet to get sick. Thank you juice.

What else do I need to know?

Purchase the “Dirty Dozen” as organic. Studies show that the following fruits and vegetables contain the highest amounts of pesticides:

  1. Apples
  2. Celery
  3. Strawberries
  4. Peaches
  5. Spinach
  6. Nectarines
  7. Grapes
  8. Bell Peppers
  9. Potatoes
  10. Blueberries
  11. Lettuce
  12. Kale/Collard Greens

 

I would suggest going to a discount produce market like Stanley’s (on North Ave and Elston) or Jerry’s (on Milwaukee and Oakton) to get organic produce at a good price. Also, if you haven’t seen the film Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, you must! It’s a documentary that follows man on his journey to become healthier with the help of his juicer!

Questions about juicing? Check out my juicing page!

Comments

  1. I’m curious, since you’ve clearly watched the Lustig lectures on fructose and fiber (kudos on your wonderful infographics!) why you would want to remove the fiber from the food? Mind you I’ve considered the juicing idea before myself, but I’m hesitant for this reason. Thoughts?

  2. Great point Shelley. Juicing is great for individuals whose body is in need of large doses of vitamins and minerals at one time (i.e. individuals with medical conditions, those who are easing into eating fruits and vegetables, etc.). It is important to note that juicing a lot of fruits will result in a beverage fairly high in natural sugar (fructose), so it’s certainly not ideal for someone struggling with sugar metabolism or blood sugar imbalances. For the average individuals, juicing once in a while to reap the nutritional benefits of a large dose of vitamins and minerals from plenty of fruits and vegetables can be healthy, however the most idea situation is to simply eat the fruit or vegetable in its entirety to also get in the fiber.

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