A Complete Guide to Juicing for Beginners
If you're a beginner you may not know all the health benefits and nutritive values juicing can offer. This quick guide to juicing is an attempt to let you in on how you can obtain those benefits and nutrition. It will also give you all the important information you need to know about juicers as a starter. After all your juice will be as good as your juicer. And there are many juicers with different qualities on the market. I don't blame you if you get confused on which one to choose for your newly acquired juicing needs.
You're probably also aware that juicing is lately a trending life style among many health conscious people, maybe also because it's supported by some famous actors as well as by recently launched new chains of juice bars. But as a health conscious person you should also know that juicing has been successfully used as a non-toxic treatment for cancer and other chronic degenerative diseases for many decades by some alternative therapy and healing methods (such as Gerson Therapy.)
So you made the right decision to become a juice lover and to start juicing towards a healthier life and fulfilling life style.
Why we need to ingest fresh produce?
All health professionals stress the importance of ingesting fresh produce (at least nine servings a.k.a. 4½ cups of it) daily to help reduce the risk for many leading causes of death, including cancer and heart disease, as well as to manage the body weight. Although consuming vegetables and fruits in their solid forms has always been recommended for a healthy existence, juicing constitutes a serious option for those who are unable to incorporate them in their diets and more...
Is juicing healthier than eating whole fruits and vegetables?
Some people still argue that there is no evidence that juicing could be healthier than eating whole fruits and vegetables, but we know that juices are absorbed by the body much faster and digested easier. Drinking fresh juices is like getting an intravenous (IV) infusion of nutrients that don’t require breaking them down before you obtain the benefits. Juicing is essentially “maintaining” live nutrients. It's even capable of helping those whose digestive systems have become impaired as a result of unhealthy food choices over the years.
So we believe that it's safe to claim that juicing comes to the rescue in a big way with so many health benefits.
In this guide you will find enough information to get you started on this delicious and juicy journey to a healthier body and glowing skin.
Let’s address now all the what, how, where, when, and which questions about juicing.
What are the Benefits of Juicing?
When properly extracted – meaning, all the essential nutrients, phytochemicals, and enzymes are intact in the vegetables and fruits which were juiced – juices can do a whole lot more for you than leave you feeling full and refreshed. Juicing, in fact, practically guarantees that you get the amounts of vitamins and minerals in fruits and vegetables that your body requires on a daily basis.
On the other hand let's stress that our bodies need a broad range of nutrients to defend itself against diseases and distress. We need to eat variety of proteins and carbohydrates. And fruit and vegetables are no different. We have to include a variety of types and colors of produce into our diet. However, although detox juicing and juice fasting exist and they are extremely important to purify our bodies, generally speaking juicing should not be a supplement to a balanced nutrition regimen, but only a complement.
Since we all like to achieve and maintain optimal healthfulness, we have to be aware of the effects of daily nutrition on long term health. And although fresh juice is an excellent source of nutrition it’s not sufficient on its own to make it happen. Maximum health benefits can be achieved by only incorporating fresh juices into a nutritious and balanced diet. This is an important information to keep in mind as a starter to juicing.
Fiber in your balanced diet is very important for several reasons and to be certain that you’re getting enough dietary fiber, you must consume at least two fiber-rich meals daily. Raw vegetables (and salads), whole grain cereals and breads and whole fresh fruits are among foods high in fiber. So by adding fiber-rich meals to a well-balanced juicing program (remember variety is the key), you will be taking the best step you could towards a healthier life style.
Here are other benefits of juicing:
Aids in Weight Loss
Fruits and vegetables with high water content can help eliminate waste matter more efficiently. Depending on the kind of juicer you have, your juice can contain a substantial amount of fiber. Although powerful juicers can extract the juice even from softer vegetables and fruits and retain the fiber, the speed of weight loss is accelerated by fiber so in that way, juicing that contain fiber does help you lose those extra pounds.
But also, regardless of its fiber content you can easily use juice to supplement a smaller meal or maybe even replace one meal per day. But you can also drink some juice an hour or so before each meal and eat a little less, and loose pounds that way.
But more importantly in the very basic level, juices obtained from fresh fruit and vegetables contain an important group of nutrients, known as enzymes. They are essential for digestion and absorption of food, for conversion of nutrition into body tissue, and for the production of energy at the cellular level. Enzymes are really critical for most of the metabolic activities taking place in our body at any given moment. However enzymes are destroyed by heat above 114 degrees, and when extracted from raw produce juices contain these catalyst enzymes that are very beneficial for our body to function properly.
Strengthens the Immune System
Juicing boosts the immune system with concentration of biophotonic energy and phytochemicals and feeds the body’s friendly bacteria and helps them fend off potentially harmful ones. Those phytochemicals are often lost by cooking; juicing retains them and according to Director of the University of Surrey’s Centre for Nutrition and Food Safety, Professor Joe Millward, it “really is the best way” of retaining them.
When blood has a sufficient supply of essential nutrients, the body’s pH levels are optimized and result in an increase in energy. Since juices are more quickly absorbed and utilized rapidly by the body, the body feels a healthy “kick” every day because of the consistent supply of energy. Having a good quality juicer can provide you with this energy source conveniently.
Supports Brain Health
According to the Kame Project – the prospective study of population-based Japanese-Americans residing in King County in Washington state who are dementia free as a result of drinking vegetable and fruit juices with high concentrations of polyphenols -- those who consumed juices twice or more in a week are less likely to acquire Alzheimer’s disease than individuals who did so only once per week.
Where to Find the Best Juicing Ingredients
Go local: There are many reasons why we should select locally grown vegetables and fruit. All nutritionists agree that these foods are most nutritious when they are ripe. Early harvesting ruins this important factor for the fresh goods we so love. Before these valuable ingredients reach our local supermarkets they are often days even weeks old but not naturally ripe.
Go organic: It's quite important that you use organic produce as much as you can especially with root vegetables like carrots, which absorb toxins in the soil. Even traces of herbicides on a produce have been proven to be very toxic substances you can put in your body. And juicing concentrates even more this kind of chemicals and transmits them directly into your blood stream.
Which Types of Juicers You Can Use
While some people use the best blenders for juicing, please take note that blenders are not juicers by design or function and damage what would otherwise be beneficial to your health and nutrition. You need a juicer to obtain the maximum nutritional benefits that are in vegetables and fruit. Spend your money on what gives you the most value and that can only be a real juicer.
Your juicing needs will rule your decision...
There are a few initial considerations you have to keep in mind when you review the juicers on the market. When you can respond the questions below it will be easier for you to choose the most suitable juicer that fits your needs:
- What will you be juicing - mostly soft fruits, a narrow variety of produce or a wide variety of fruits and veggies?
- How often will you be juicing? Once in a while, a couple of times a week, or daily?
- How much time you can dedicate to juicing (prepping the produce and extracting it through a juicer; cleaning the juicer; can you make it fresh every time)?
- How serious are you in extracting all the healthy ingredients and nutritive values from fresh produces?
- How much money are you willing to invest in your juicer?
Below is quick overview of the basic types of juicers you can choose from...
This type of juicer separates the fiber from the juice by spinning. A centrifugal juicer, generally speaking is the least expensive type of juicer, and it is typically accompanied by noise while in operation. It juices the fastest, though, because it rotates faster. On the other hand this rapid movement generates higher heat which can kill some of the nutrients in fruit and vegetables. Although new high-end models are quite effective, as a rule of thumb centrifugal juicers are less efficient when it comes to separating liquid from pulp, especially when compared to other types (masticating juicers and twin-gear juicers.)
- Learn more about Centrifugal Juicers
Also known as the auger type of juicer or slow juicer, this type literally chews up, or “masticates,” fruit and vegetables before these are pushed through the juicer’s strainer. A masticating juicer yields between 20% and 25% more liquid than its centrifugal cousin. This type is also quieter while in operation because it's slower. The only downside is that masticating juicers can be more expensive than regular centrifugal juicers. But we can easily say that a high-end centrifugal juicer is usually in the same price range as a masticating juicer.
- Learn more about Masticating Juicers
Twin Gear Juicer
Generally, this type is considered to be the best mainly because of the juice quality it yields which has both premium taste and nutrient content. More juice will be extracted by a twin gear juicer as well, making this type more economical in the long run. The downside is the slow rate of extraction and the longer time it takes to feed as well as clean it. Twin gear juicers are also the most expensive of the lot. But these downsides are not even comparable to what you get out of these babies -if you can effort them.
A Quick Comparison for the Novices:
Omega vs. Breville - Two Most Popular Juicers
Omega manufactures very fine juicers and Omega J8004 Nutrition Center Commercial Masticating Juicer is one of the best masticating type of juicers available on the market today. With a two horsepower motor powered by 150 watts, it has a dual stage system designed to optimize the extraction process and retain the maximum nutritional amounts in vegetables and fruits. It has a rotation speed of 80 RPM to minimize foam, heating up, clogging and oxidation. This one and its (best selling on Amazon) sibling Omega J8006 is the most highly rated juicers in the market and with its price tag (around $250),
you can't get anything better than that.
Meanwhile, for those of you who prefer centrifugal juicers, the Breville will offer a few quality choices. Breville BJE510XL is equipped with a powerful 900-watt motor, 5-speed settings, and a three-inch feed chute that can accommodate whole fruits such as pears and apples.
This easy to clean juicer (almost all parts can be washed in the dish washer) has a smart chip that allows the juicer to sense the load of the produce and adjust power accordingly, making juicing more efficient. Soft fruits, leafy greens or dense vegetables will all have a different weight.
This is also a highly rated juicer in its category and it costs just under $200.
Basic Tips for Starters
Important: Make juicing a habit. You will see quick results if you juice every day.
Start with simple recipes. Find a recipe you like, ideally an easy one made with a few kinds of produce. This way it'll be easier to keep your juicing habit. And don't obsess over the exact ingredients in the recipe. You can use plus or minus a few carrots for instance.
Go organic when you can. You will see more benefits when your juicing is extracted from the purest produce.
Consume your juice right away. Although juices obtained using a masticating juicer have a longer shelf life when you store them in the fridge, it's important to drink them right away. They will only be at their best for 4-8 hours, but if you'd like to take them with you use stainless steel or glass containers (but never plastic cups).
Don't get rid of the pulp. It can be used in compost or in your cooking recipes. It's a great source of fiber your daily diet thrives for.
How to Make Vegetable Juices More Palatable
Newbies who are not certain about their juicing needs yet can use really either juicer types (centrifugal or masticating) and will see that it's not so difficult to come up with nutritious drinks every time.
Although you are probably a novice, the reason to indulge yourself into juicing is most likely to juice vegetables as well and take advantage of all the health benefits green and detox juicing will offer.
So as a rule of thumb start juicing mild-tasting vegetables such as cucumbers, carrots, and zucchini and work your way from there to those which tend to have stronger flavors such as spinach, escarole, cilantro, and parsley, among others. Don’t get turned off by the smell or the taste of these veggies either as they are the most dense when it comes to nutrients. You can always add in an apple to make the taste more palatable for your mouth and the processing easier for your stomach.
You can learn more about Vegetable Juicing HERE.