Hi guys, it’s Annie, coming at you with another tasty tutorial! Today, I want to talk to you about juicing. I’m sure you’ve had some exposure to the current juicing trend, if you’ve bought some cold-pressed juice in the store, or had a fresh glass at a cafe. It’s very different from what we’re used to with pasteurized, processed juice boxes that were basically all sugar and no vitamins.
New gourmet juices are cold-pressed and unpasteurized, and most of them have quite a bit of fiber left in, which gives them better texture and way better nutritional value. That’s just the storebought stuff, though. I think it’s definitely great when you need it, if you’re traveling or in a hurry. But the best juice is still homemade. Juicing is super popular right now as a homemade pursuit as well, because that’s the way to get the absolute best nutritional benefit, as well as a much lower cost on your grocery bill.
Ok, so, why juice? That’s a question I get a lot, and funnily enough, it usually comes from people who are pretty interested in nutrition. I think it’ because there are a lot of misconceptions about juicing out there. A lot of people think they shouldn’t need to make juice because they could just eat that produce instead. Others say they don’t want to drink juice because of the high sugar content. Let me answer both of those points and lay out the case for homemade juice!
First off, I want to point out that not enough of us get our fruits and vegetables. Not by a long shot. Even those of us who are concerned about having a healthy diet aren’t doing a great job. You’re supposed to be eating 7-9 cups of fresh fruits and vegetables every day. Fresh, my friends, not cooked! Show of hands, please–how many are making that happen? Really? Every day? So, most of us aren’t, and it’s ok to be honest about that.
There are only so many raw vegetables you can fit into a meal, just because the textures aren’t always pleasant, and a huge amount of fiber like that can be hard on digestion. It also takes such a long time to eat–just think about how long it takes you to chow through a salad, and then multiply that by 5 or so.
Juicing solves both of those problems, if you do it right! Go to this page if you need to learn more about different juicing machines and what they’re good for. One glass of homemade juice, if you use a range of fruits and vegetables, can have several servings of fresh produce in it at once. That’s enough for most of us to make up the difference between what we should be eating, and what we’re really getting in our diet. Since it’s so concentrated with vitamins and minerals, juicing is very convenient, whichever way you go (homemade or premade, as long as the prepared juice is cold-pressed and unrefined). It’s an efficient way to get a bunch of nutrition at once. Consider the best masticating juicers for your juicing needs!
I also find that it makes it easier to expand your nutritional palate in one glass, as opposed to what you can do on a plate. You can more easily blend groups of fruits and vegetables in juice, since you don’t have a bunch of competing textures like you would if you tried to eat it all raw and unjuiced. For instance, are you ever going to eat raspberries and kale together? I didn’t think so. But in juice, it can all work really well!
Ok, and now to get to that argument about sugar content. Where the skeptics are going wrong is that they’re looking at your average store bought juice, not gourmet fresh-pressed or homemade blends. Pasteurized, processed juice from an average grocery store doesn’t have fiber, which makes it have a higher sugar content per volume when you look at the proportions. Without all that refinement, heating, and processing, homemade juice has a much lower sugar content, so there’s really nothing to be afraid of. It’s all balanced out by the fiber, and you need some sugar content to give you an energy boost!
Don’t think of it as a sugar rush, though! Thanks to all those electrolytes, vitamins, minerals, and live enzymes in the juice you make, you’re getting a boost that doesn’t lead to a crash. Instead of artificially making you feel better through stimulants, it’s making your body actually work better from the inside out!
Overall, I think juicing is the single best thing you can do to seriously improve your nutritional intake. It’s efficient, convenient for busy lifestyles, and it really does taste fantastic. So, join me in a juicing adventure today! I recommend visiting startjuicing.org on twitter. I’ve posted a few recipes in the archive for you to try!