Only nature has a way of putting groups of nutrients together that complements each other, and when consumed, worked synergistically to repair, to cleanse, and to heal.
If I had to select one part of a plant based diet that would be the most important, it would be juicing!
I consider daily juicing of primarily organic vegetables and fruits to be an essential part of any long term healing programme. Juicing is a highly effective and efficient way for the body to absorb essential nutrients into the blood and cells. It can take as little as a few minutes for the body to start utilizing nutrients from freshly made juice.
Juices are like a blood transfusion.
A glass of fruit and vegetable juice takes very little digestion, if any. It goes right into your body. We look at juices in the same way a doctor would look at an I.V It's something that can go right into your bloodstream.
"Our body is a living organism made up of living cells, and living cells require living food (raw food) to function properly ... the fastest way to restore the body to wellness is not through the eating of raw food the body is self-healing when we stop the offense and provide the body cells with the proper building materials". alone, but also by consuming large quantities of raw, freshly-extracted vegetable juices. The juices do not heal. But what they do is provide the body with concentrated building materials so the body can heal itself. The first part of the body that will restore when given the proper nutrients is the immune system. As the immune system restores, then it seeks out the trouble spots throughout the body and starts to heal them".
Vegetables are the storehouse for most of the vital nutrients and minerals required by the human body. Well eating plenty of vegetables, especially the dark green and leafy kind, is one of the most profoundly beneficial things you can do for your health. The easiest way to ensure that you are getting enough of these nutritious vegetables daily is with a well balanced vegetable juicing plan.
Juice your vegetables
but eat your fruits.
- Vegetables are better juiced whereas fruits are better eaten whole. Fruits need all of the fiber in order to slow down the absorption of sugar in your blood stream. The exception is that of mixing apple juice with vegetables. Vegetables contain less sugar and therefore don’t need as much fiber to slow down the absorption. This goes back to the idea that store bought fruit juices are not a healthy drink.
- When we eat solid foods it takes many hours of digestive activity before nourishment is finally available to the cells and tissues of the body. While fibers in foods are essential for helping cleanse our digestive tract, the removal of fibers in the extraction of juices allows essential nutrients to be absorbed within minutes instead of hours and requires little effort from the body. This ability to bypass your digestion and go straight into your nutritional system is important for giving your body a break and allowing it to heal itself fully.
- When we juice the fruits and vegetables, their goodness is released from the fiber and we are able to drink their highly concentrated nutrients which are then able to enter our bloodstream very quickly.
- When you ingest the fiber with the nutrients, the digestive process begins. You may get 10% - 30% of the nutrients extracted when the bulk passes through the intestines and colon during digestion.
- When you drink the juice without fiber before any digestion begins, you may get 90% plus of the nutrients absorbed through the intestinal wall. This is one of the important benefits to juicing for health.
Reasons to Juice
- Vegetable juicing works because it balances the acidity that most of us struggle with.
In order to get all the benefits, you have to juice fresh fruits and vegetables, preferably organic ones in your own kitchen. If you make your own juice and drink it fresh, you will have control over the quality of the fruits and vegetables you are consuming, and in many cases you will save money. Your local Farmer's Market is a great place to buy fresh, inexpensive and often organic produce. Many people initially think that juicing will be a real chore, but the majorities are pleasantly surprised to find that it is much easier than they thought it would be.
- Juicing helps you absorb all the nutrients from the vegetables.
This is important because most of us have impaired digestion as a result of making less-than-optimal food choices over many years. This limits your body's ability to absorb all the nutrients from the vegetables. Juicing will help to "pre-digest" them for you, so you will receive most of the nutrition, rather than having it go down the toilet.
- Vegetable juicing with fresh, live vegetables is loaded with minerals, vitamins, phytonutrients, protein, carbohydrates, and oils.
These are just a few of the wonderful benefits of juicing. Thousands of new chemicals that are beneficial to life have yet to be identified in the symphony of ingredients found in whole live plants. Millions of chemical reactions interacting provided by the plant nutrients perform their life sustaining act when we drink fresh juice. This in turn provides our bodies with what is needed for our healthy cell growth.
- Juicing allows you to consume an optimal amount of vegetables in an efficient manner.
Some people may find eating that many vegetables difficult, but it can be easily accomplished with a quick glass of vegetable juice.
- You can add a wider variety of vegetables in your diet.
Many people eat the same vegetable salads every day. This violates the principle of regular food rotation and increases your chance of developing an allergy to a certain food. But with juicing, you can juice a wide variety of vegetables that you may not normally enjoy eating whole.
- What combination's of fruits and vegetables would be best to juice?
There are many different recipes (see below for examples), but in general at least 50-75% of the juicing should consist of greens (spinach, kale, chard, parsley, dandelion, watercress, broccoli, etc.)
- Should I use only organic products?
In general, yes. By juicing all non-organic products, we stand the chance of taking in concentrated amounts of pesticides used on the plants, thereby negating the value of daily juicing. Some consolation is offered by J.M. Walker, author of the book Fresh Vegetable and Fruit Juices, who says that the pesticides tend to reside in the fiber, and therefore and filtered out when we juice. My recommendation is to use as much organic produce as possible though.
- Next, vegetable juicing does not add to the insulin levels like fruit juicing.
With the exception of carrots and beet juice, vegetable juicing is superior to fruit juicing in that respect. Carrots and beet juice behave much like fruits and hence forms a separate category as far as insulin levels are concerned.
- Another factor that supports vegetable juicing is the degree of absorption of nutrients that happens in the intestine.
Most of us have highly compromised intestines, thanks to years on end of unhealthy or imbalanced food habits. Such an intestine always fails to absorb all of the relevant nutrients during digestion. But vegetable juicing eases the burden on the intestine and is digested and absorbed more quickly and efficiently than the average solid food.
- Fresh juice provides us with minerals, vitamins, essential fatty acids, carbohydrates, proteins and much more.
The reasons for vegetable juicing and fruit juicing are the same, but vegetables have something much more important that fruits have less of - chlorophyll (Chlorophyll in our diet )
Juicing with vegetables also helps to detoxify the body and enables the cells to absorb and utilize nutrients better. If the cells of the body are loaded with toxins, adding more nutrients will be of little value, so the ability of vegetable juicing to detoxify cells is as important to overall digestion and health as the consumption of large amounts of nutrients and enzymes.
All of these factors are vital to maintaining good health. You will find that when you make fresh juice a daily part of your diet, you will have increased energy, a glowing complexion, strengthened immune system, stronger bones and a reduced risk of disease. It is recommended that you drink at least 16 ounces of freshly squeezed juice each day.
Juicing works so well at cleansing because of a few reasons:
There is hardly any digestive work needed to process raw, enzymatically active liquid. Vegetable juice gets into the system quickly. Fresh pressed Juices can flush toxins from your body, are good for your weight, heart, circulation and overall well-being. Juices contain no saturated fats or added sodium and can be helpful in lowering your cholesterol.
The most important, and most overlooked, reason: juicing cleans the liver.
I believe that the next big advance in understanding health will be in acknowledging the importance of self-detoxifying and de-sludging our liver. If you look into any human biology book, it already tells us that there are now over 700 known functions of the liver. But what we don't realize is how that functionality is dependent on how unclogged it is.
Liver cleansing is actually easy; because the number one job of the liver is to ...cleanse the blood! In other words, every drop of your nine pints of blood runs constantly through the liver, removing toxins and metabolic waste every second of every day of your life. Since crushed vegetable juice goes quickly into the blood stream, it goes quickly into the liver as well.
I cannot say this enough: a cleansed liver is a felt sensation. Improving its function seems to affect everything, from mental clarity and focus, to emotions, to sleep, to how stress is handled, our digestion, our skin, even how we perceive and deal with our relationships. Liver detoxification is so important, and nothing comes close to it like the juice of raw vegetables.
- One of the most important results of giving your cells a healthy dose of vegetable juice is that it will help to maintain the pH balance of your body. An optimum pH level is essential for maintaining good health. The pH scale ranges from 1 to 14 with a measure of 1 being extremely acidic and a measure of 14 being extremely alkaline.
Ideal pH Level: The reason pH (or potential hydrogen) is important is that too often our cells become too acidic. The more acidic the cells are, the less able they are to transport oxygen throughout the body. In this regard, acid is toxic to the body’s cells. The ideal pH level is slightly alkaline, between 7 and 7.5. Unfortunately, the environment tends to contribute too much acid, making it difficult to maintain a healthy pH balance without a concerted effort to include more alkaline foods like vegetable juices in the diet.
The All Important Enzymes
Enzymes for Enhanced Digestion. Fresh juices are a tremendous source of enzymes.
When you drink live juices the cells are flooded with life giving nutrients. One of the most important ingredients from live plants is the active enzymes that your body uses to transform nutrients into a usable form for cellular health and growth.
All of the enzymes are lost when you cook any live food. The body then has to manufacture it's own enzymes to do the work. By consuming live food, the body does not have to work overtime to produce enzymes that are needed to transform cooked "dead" food into usable nutrients for cellular regeneration. All commercial bottled juice has been pasteurized and is without active enzymes.
Enzymes are your body’s work force. Acting as catalysts in hundreds of thousands of chemical reactions that take place throughout the body, enzymes are essential for digestion and absorption of food, for conversion of foodstuffs into body tissue, and for the production of energy at the cellular level. In fact, enzymes are critical for most of the metabolic activities taking place in your body every second of every day. In fact, the "freshness" of juice is one of their key features, because enzymes are destroyed by heat. When you eat cooked foods, whether its meal, grains, fruits, or the heat has destroyed vegetables and enzymes if the food is cooked at temperatures above 114 degrees. Since fruits and vegetables are juiced raw, the enzymes are still viable when you drink the juice.
But the good news is that with a few vegetable juice drinks a day, digestive enzymes can easily be replenished.
Juices should always be used immediately. Drink your vegetable juice right away, or store it very carefully.
Juicing is a time-consuming process, so you'll probably be thinking to yourself, "I wonder if I can juice first thing in the morning, and then drink it later?" This is not a good idea. Vegetable juice is HIGHLY perishable so it's best to drink all of your juice immediately.
However, if you're careful,(and pressed with a masticating juicer) you can store it for up to 24 hours with only moderate nutritional decline. This is really helpful if you are bringing your juice to work with you so you can consume it during the day.
How to store your juice:
Put your juice in a glass jar with an airtight lid and fill it to the very top. There should be a minimum amount of air in the jar as the oxygen in air (air is about 20 percent oxygen) will "oxidize" and damage the juice.
Purchase a food vacuum pump like Food Saver with a Ball jar attachment. You can pour your juice into a pint jar and put the lid on and use the Food Saver to suck out the air in the jar to vacuum pack it. This will remove most of the oxygen that will damage the juice.
Immediately store it in the fridge and consume it when you are ready. It is best to drink it as soon as possible and in any case within 24 hours of juicing.
Most people juice in the morning, but if that does not work out well for your schedule, please feel free to choose whatever meal works best for your lifestyle
If they need to be kept for a little while, store in a brown glass container in the fridge. If you take later a glass of juice out of the stored one, add to each glass one capsules of digestive enzymes. Enzymes get destroyed after 20 minutes of juicing.
Vegetable Juice is Not a Complete Meal
It is important to note that vegetable juice has very little protein and virtually no fat so by itself it is not really a complete food. It really should be used in addition to your regular meals not in place of it.
So unless you are undergoing some special fasting or detoxification program it is probably unwise to use juicing as a meal replacement. Ideally it can be consumed with your meal or as a between meal snack.
Fiber is essential to health, so be sure to continue eating raw fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grains in conjunction with fresh juices to gain the maximum amount of nutritional value from what you eat.
Blenders vs Juicers:
Don't confuse blenders with juicers.
Blenders process the fiber and the nutrients together. Juicers separate the fiber from the nutrients. This is extremely important when juicing for health. Although eating fruits and vegetables in their natural state does provide us with a substantial amount of vitamins and minerals, we only obtain the maximum benefits from them when they are juiced. Much of their goodness is locked in the fiber, which is expelled from the body.
The Benefits of Blenders and Smoothies
1. Smoothies keep longer in the refrigerator than juice does.
Smoothies contain all of the fiber that the fruits and vegetables initially came with, albeit in a blended form. Because everything is still in the drink itself, you can actually store smoothies longer without losing too much nutritional value.
To preserve a smoothie you simply need to put it in a glass container like a mason jar filled to the brim. This keeps the air out, so that the smoothie will not oxidize. Seal the jar and drink it within 24 to 32 hours. You might need to shake it if the water separates.
2. The fiber of a green smoothie acts like chimney sweepers.
Smoothies have a cleansing effect on the bowel. Since smoothies still contain all of the fiber from the fruits and vegetables, you get a chimney sweeping effect. One of the reasons I’m so fond of smoothies is that they keep me regular, and cleanse my body on their way out.
3. Sugar is absorbed slower because of the built-in fiber.
Green smoothies allow you to have fruit without experiencing the aftermath of a sugar spike and crash. The fiber will keep the flow of sugar regular as your body digests it and it enters the bloodstream. Fruit smoothies will have the effect as eating whole fruits, so you may experience a bit of an up and down, but nothing compared to fruit juice. (By the way, store bought fruit juices are the worst, and I don’t recommend them at all.)
4. Commercial smoothies are “tainted”.
Most store-bought or juice-bar smoothies are less than ideal. These smoothies are made with frozen fruit, with store-bought sugary juices and liquors for added taste. Most store-bought smoothies are packed with sugar so that they taste extra yummy. These smoothies also tend to include dairy of a questionable quality and source.
Though commercial smoothies are tainted, commercial juices are even worse. Bottled juices are almost pure sugar with very little nutrition at all. They are also high in calories, and just plain bad for the health.
5. Blenders are easy to clean.
A blender is easily cleaned by running it under the tap. Or adding a bit of water and soap to the blender and pushing the clean cycle button for a few seconds. Because blenders are so easy to assemble and clean a lot of people gravitate towards blending instead of juicing.
6. Fruit smoothies are great tasting for the whole family.
Smoothies are great for making fruit-based drinks because it contains the whole fruit. They are also great for green smoothies because you can mix and match to please the taste buds of anyone in your household. A little extra fruit, or maybe a spoonful of cacao for an added twist.
7. With a blender you can make sauces, salsas, and dips.
Blenders are great for making sauces and dips. With a blender you can make all kinds of different things aside from smoothies, like salsas, guacamole, sauces, and soups. Though you can most certainly make soups with a juicer, blended soups tend to be thicker and creamier.
8. You can easily add supplements and super-foods into smoothies.
When you’re making a smoothie you can add a spoonful of hemp protein powder, spirulina, maca root powder, and so on. You wouldn’t necessarily add these supplements to a glass of juice, either because of the taste or the texture. That makes smoothies ideal for super-foods and giving yourself a nutritional edge.
My Recommended Blender of Choice If you’ve got the means then I definitely recommend you go with a Vitamix blender.
There are many bottled juices available on the market today. I do not suggest buying pre – made juices. One of the problems with these is that many of their valuable nutrients are lost during the bottling process. A lot of them are filled with preservatives and sugars.
Pasteurized vegetable juices purchased in bottles at the store are worthless! They’re DEAD JUICE.
That means they have virtually none of the nutritional healing benefits of fresh, living juice. Don’t be fooled by healthy-sounding bottled juice products. If it’s in a bottle, it’s dead. And dead juice doesn’t support life.
Stay away from all bottled juices you can bay in grocery stores. At best they are just a tasty drink, at worst they are a denatured sugary concentrate, which has additives and preservatives in it – seriously, stay away from them.
Pasteurized juice includes frozen concentrates and juices in shelf-stable containers like juice boxes, bottles, or cans. Sometimes pasteurized juices are sold at refrigerator temperature.
When juice is pasteurized, it is heated to a high temperature for a short period of time. Pasteurization destroys bacteria, molds, and unwanted microorganisms that might be lurking in the juice. Pasteurization also prolongs shelf life, making it a much more cost-efficient product.
But what happens to those lovely raw vitamins, minerals and enzymes? They are all gone. If heating something can destroy the bad, you better believe that it is going to destroy the good too.
What does that leave us with then?
Perhaps a minuscule amount of nutrients, but only because most juice manufactures acknowledge this travesty, and attempt to “fortify” their juice with “vitamins”.
After the pasteurization process, the brightly packaged juices, the ones that can sit for an eternity on the shelves of every market, are about as rich in nutrients as a pack of “natural” gummy bears.
In other words– we are left with sugar. Lots and lots of sugar.
Fructose, the kind of sugar that is found naturally in fruit and vegetables, is fine in moderation when consumed RAW. This is because the live enzymes and nutrients that chaperon the sugar, offer the body much needed nourishment, and help the body to break down and assimilate itself, all the while, nourishing the body.
Fruit and vegetables juices, that are freshly pressed, are quite possibly one of the most hydrating, nourishing and healing drinks you can consume.
Fresh juice should ideally be consumed on an empty stomach, without solid food. This infuses the body and tissues with an abundance of vitamins, minerals and live enzymes. Because it is lacking fiber, it does not require digestion– thus it gives up a burst of energy. read the article entitled, Enzymes: power of enzymes
Next time you go to purchase a juice from the market, you may want to consider what about it is healthy, and nutritious, after it has been heated, and treated. You may think you are giving your kids 100% grape juice, when in actuality, you are giving them an indulgent glass of grape sugar liquid. Yum!
There are quite a number of products available in the supermarket that claim to be "freshly squeezed", but often come with a shelf life of several days. So is this juice really classed as being freshly squeezed if it has been kept in a bottle for a week or more?
The simple answer is no it is not. What makes it even worse when it comes to products that are allegedly "freshly squeezed" is that to length their time they remain on the shelf, heat is used to preserve it. When heat is applied during pasteurisation vital nutrients in the foods are destroyed along with pathogens that can cause us harm. By producing your own juice with a juicer you are cutting the risks that come from when food is produced on an industrial scale.
There are some "fresh" orange juice products available where it states on the label that it has been gently pasteurised. This is complete nonsense; either it is pasteurised or it isn't. When they state it has been gently pasteurised are they suggesting that fluffy gloves were worn when extracting the juice before being bottled and put on a cushion? Do we really care? You should never be misled by these terms as they are there to try and make the process sound good, but in reality it is just to help increase the manufacturer’s profits.
There is one thing that you can be sure of with this juice is that not only will it have been heated, but the nutritional value of the juice has been depleted. Only by making your own freshly squeezed juice can you ensure that what you are drinking is safe and contains a wealth of health giving nutrients to your body.
A good quality juicer will change your life for the better
With a Juicer you can improve your health by incorporating more fresh foods. A good juicer is an investment for life.
The key of juicing effectively as well as the key to wanting to keep it up is to make it easy and effortless, therefore you need a good juicer. With a Juicer you can improve your health by incorporating more fresh foods. A good juicer is an investment for life. Plus you want one that is easy to clean because if it takes you in our clean the juicer after you may choose to not to be too motivated to do it too often. Thanks to the popularity of fresh juice, there are so many different juicer extractors you can now buy. But lets just spend a moment talking about the features you need to look for, so you get the juicer that is right for you.
There are fast juicers and slow juicer machines. The fast ones are called centrifugal juicers, and work by using a spinning blade to shred up all your ingredients letting the juice drain out. These are the type of machine you find in department stores. These juicers are centrifugal and spin at very high speeds to do their juicing. The high speeds heat up the juice and can cause damage to some of the perishable nutrients and all the enzymes in the vegetables. They are also limited to juicing fairly “normal” sorts of ingredients. So most fruits and vegetables. But, they cannot be used to juice drier, stringier things like wheat grass, herbs, or most leafy green vegetables (such as kale or cabbage).
Now for the other kind of juicer I mentioned – the slow kind. What is meant by slow is that they use a slowly turning crushing system rather than a fast spinning blade. The slow crushing action has them called Masticating juicer machines (masticating is the scientific term for chewing, like when you chew and crush food in your mouth). They commonly use either one or two turning augers or gears to physically squeeze the juice out of food, so you are left with a very dry, well extracted pulp.
How slow is it? Well, my own Greenstar double gear (auger) juicer takes about 30 seconds to make a glass of celery and carrot juice, so it is not much slower than a “fast” centrifugal juicer.
Here are the advantages of using a high quality masticating juicer (Greenlife / - star or Omega juicer) slower juicer extractor system:
- Unlike most current popular juicers, the Greenlife or Greenstar juicer is designed to extract green juices. They easily produce high volumes of green juice without plugging up, and the pulp comes out dry.
Some Juicers Only Juice Non-Leafy Vegetables.
Centrifugal juicers have a hard time juicing wheat grass and leafy green vegetables. Many people actually purchase wheat grass juicers because the typical centrifugal juicers can't do that. A typical home juicer just can’t process the dry stringy material. But because the entire range of Greenstar juicer machines use the same slow speed, crushing action, what you get is a truly all purpose machine. So you can juice all your leafy vegetables, herbs and soft fruits with a high quality masticating juicer.
- Inside these fruit and vegetable juicers, you will find a mixture of stainless steel and super tough polymer components that will last years before needing replacement. companies like Greenstar have excellent reputations to protect, and as long as your warranty is still valid you will never have trouble obtaining free replacement juicer parts that were damaged by normal wear and tear. I'm using my Greenstar power juicer now every day for the last 17 years and never had any problems with it.
- No air gets mixed into the juice, so no froth. This also makes the juicer recipes keep for longer, since it is oxygen reacting with vitamin compounds that makes fresh juice go off faster.
- Slower speed means no heating – again, better, healthier juice because vitamin and enzyme content is not affected. The juicer has a built-in control to prevent overheating and it will restart when they have cooled down. You don't have to worry about the motor burning out. They are equipped with low-speed milling type screw which preserves as much flavor and nutritional value as possible. (Other high-speed juicers can destroy natural flavor and nutritional value of vegetables and fruits.)
- It works as a wheatgrass juicer.
- The powerful, slow crushing system is able to juice dry tough ingredients.
Many of these high quality masticating juicer machines can also work as food processors: Making pasta dough, purees, grind nuts into nut butters, make pastes and purees, and even allow you to make rice milk and soy milk using soaked ingredients.
The versatile Greenlife / star and Omega juicer has over five completely different functions.
- Vegetable Juice Extractor
- Fruit Juicer
- Seasoning Mincer/Chopper
- Meat/Fish Mincer
- Food Mill
- They are easy to disassemble, clean and reassemble for other functions. (5 minutes)
- Greenlife / -star in particular give up to 10 years warranty on their machines – an unusually long time, since a normal length warranty on kitchen appliances is 12 months! Greenstar in particular offer excellent value for money when buying a new juicer machine, and there is literally nothing these machines can’t handle. I'm using my Greenlife juicer for over 17 years every day and never had a single problem with it.
This is a worthwhile investment if you intend to do any juicing for improved health.
Many Juicers Can Rob You of Precious Time With Long Cleanups.
Not all juicers are the same when it comes to ease of operation and cleaning. Being easy to clean might not sound like an important choice but it just might have the most influence on your juicing plans.
Poorly made juicers will require extensive cleaning to keep them well maintained. Even expensive juicers, like the Angel which is stainless steel and uses twin gears, or the Norwalk juicer can take up to 30 minutes to clean properly. Most people find that when it takes that long to clean up they just don't juice.
A quality juicer can be cleaned in less than five minutes. Cleaning the parts of the Greenlife juicer requires little more than a quick rinse under the tap. This makes them enormously easy to keep clean. This quality design has cut my cleaning time in half while giving me more flexibility in my juicing options.