The juicing trend has hit the nation, and hit it hard. With juice bars popping up on every other corner, we can now eat our five-a-day serving in a few large gulps. But what are the real benefits of juicing and how do you know if it’s a good idea for you?
Juicing is the process of extracting juice from all of your favorite fresh fruits and vegetables. You can find a juicer online or in your local department store, and they range anywhere from $50-$500. Drinking fresh juice means you’re consuming a high volume of vitamins and minerals, in one fell swoop. Experts recommend buying a juicer that retains pulp (or continuing to eat whole fruits and vegetables on the side), in order to increase your daily fiber intake.
For many people hopping on the juicing band-wagon, they are looking to lose some weight in a natural, healthy way. Juicing tends to be a much safer and more enjoyable way to shed unwanted pounds over tricky fad diets that always seem to come and go. It’s important to remember that in order to achieve weight loss goals, you must be consuming fewer calories then you’re burning. Because fresh juice contains very few calories, and unless you’re sleeping for most of your day, the result of regular juicing may very well be weight loss. It is also important to carry on consuming foods that contain protein, fiber and good fats, so relying solely on juice is not a healthy choice and could see dangerous complications. A great way to avoid this is blending in some ground flaxseed, nut butter, avocado or even yogurt to provide some healthy fats and extra protein.
Fresh juice contains an array of vitamins, minerals, enzymes and other super nutrients which benefit your body in a multitude of ways. Juicing can help keep hair, skin and nails healthy and radiant. It is free from preservatives and harmful chemicals, and can give you an instant energy boost. It’s also a great way to detoxify the body and cleanse the liver. Juicing has even been proven to help people suffering from certain ailments such as arthritis, asthma, diabetes, hypertension and indigestion. Incredible!
Always try to keep the fiber-rich pulp in your juices, or add it to your soup or pasta sauces. Boost the flavor by adding fresh herbs and spices like mint, cinnamon, cilantro or ginger. Include green vegetables like kale, spinach, cabbage and broccoli which are very low in calories and help to reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease. If you’re going “full-on-juice”, and plan to carry out a regular routine, it might be a good idea to see a naturopath, who can recommend supplements to help cleanse the liver, spleen and kidneys. Remember, no preservatives mean juice is highly perishable so drink your juice straight away, or freeze the leftovers in ice-cube trays for later.