Some people are die-hard juicers, and some experts believe it’s not any more nutritious than eating whole fruits and vegetables in their daily diet. Many see the benefits of juicing in their homes to avoid the oversweetened, pasteurized juices on the market (sugar water). It’s known that eating a plant-based diet is linked to lower risk of heart disease or cancer, but limited studies show how juicing may have the same benefits.
So, what are the pros and cons of juicing?
One of the most important differences between juicing and eating whole fruits and vegetables is the amount of fiber intake. Juicing machines extract the juice and leave behind the pulp and skins, which has the vital nutrient fiber.
Don’t be mislead by those who only juice. Unless you’re on a cleanse, it’s recommended not to replace your whole veggies with juicing. Based on this fact, which do you think is more nutritionally beneficial, juicing or whole foods? …You need fiber found in whole foods!
To Juice or Not To Juice
You may have heard the term “juicing” from those who want to detox. Juicing also provides a power-packed, immediate infusion of raw, live vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other easily digestible micronutrients into the diet. This is also ideal for those who cannot chew or those on an all-fluid diet. Additionally, juicing is an excellent way to stay hydrated and balance out the acidity that pervades so much of the North American diet.
A healthy diet includes around two whole fruits and three to four vegetables each day. Therefore, the biggest benefit to juicing stated by nutritionist Jennifer Barr, RD, of Wilmington, DE says,
“If you’re not big into fruits and vegetables, it’s a good way to get them in.”
On the other side, if you have blood sugar issues or looking to increase your fiber intake, then juicing alone is not for you. The best solution is to eat vegetables raw, lightly steamed or sauteed, or in soups/stews.
Drink…IMMEDIATELY, and Use Valuable Ingredients
Fresh juices are meant to be consumed in the first 1-2 hours, or else they loose their nutritional value.
Starchy vegetables, like beets and carrots, have LOTS of sugar. To reduce these sugary ingredients, follow the ratio of 4:1. Additionally, as you probably already know, organic fruits and vegetables are preferred in order to avoid pesticides and other synthetic chemicals. If organic is not available, be sure to wash produce thoroughly.
Fruit: Watch Calories
Be mindful of the amount of fruits you include. Fruits have way more calories than vegetables, thus favor more vegetables in your recipes. To add more protein, you could add almond milk, Greek yogurt, flaxseed, or peanut butter.
Although juicing might seem like a good way to lose weight, be mindful that if your juice does not have enough fiber or protein, your stomach could soon growl for food. Not feeling hungry can backfire and could turn you into a rebel finding yourself eating a candy bar in the corner. A daily routine of juicing will unlikely last, so it’s not often recommended as a method to lose weight.
Where Do You Stand?
All in all, eating the appropriate amount of fruits and vegetables is key to being healthy. Some swear by juicing, but we need to understand juicing eliminates fiber and has not been proven to be better than just eating whole fruits and vegetables. If someone does not like eating fruits and vegetables, then juicing may be a good thing, but does not need to be considered a substitute, since fiber is essential for our bodies to function properly.
Check with your doctor before doing a lot of juicing, so you can avoid any potential problems.
Reader – What has been your experience with juicing vegetables and fruits?