ABCs of juicing
Busy lifestyles can create havoc with your five-a-day fruit and veg consumption, but juicing can help. Here’s how to get a quick, easy and nutritious fix at the whizz of a blender.
There was a time when juicing was the hottest trend of the rich and famous. Hollywood A-listers and radicle health gurus knocked back juices like their lives depended on it. Before we knew it, the whole world was talking about juicing. But why?
It’s been years since the juice-mad ‘fad’ hit the front pages of health mags, yet juicing remains held in high regard. And for good reason. This guide will give you the straight facts about these veg-packed power-ups and help you squeeze out the benefits until the pips squeak…
What is juicing?
Juicing can often become confused with smoothies. Both are wonderfully nutritious - yes - but there is a significant difference. Smoothies are normally prepared in a blender, serving up the whole, edible part of the fruit and vegetables, including pips and seeds.
A juicer is designed to separate the juice from the pulp. The pulp is discarded and only the juice is consumed. While the pulp is a healthy part of the fruit, it’s also insoluble fibre: ideal for those who require increased fibre for conditions such as constipation, not so ideal for those who suffer with loose bowel movements. Juice in its purest form (without the pulp) still contains high servings of natural soluble fibre.
What are the benefits of juicing?
● Increased fruit and vegetable consumption. Busy lifestyles can make preparing five-a-day meals a tricky task. But with one quick whizz in the juicer, you can slurp down up your daily recommended intake of fruit and vegetables in one glass.
● Quick and portable. Struggling with that work/life balance? Prepare your juice before leaving home and you’ll have a grab-and-go nutritious drink for later in the day. It’s an excellent boost when that mid-afternoon slump hits.
● Reduces fibre intake. Juicing provides desirable levels of fibre for those who have to limit it in their diets - perfect for anyone with IBS or similar digestive conditions.
● Natural sugars. Tired? Menstruation time? Dreaming of chocolate? Any time you’re craving a calorific sugary snack, just blend yourself a juice. Natural sugars in the juice will give you the same hit as sugar, perking your energy levels and reviving you without the artificial chemicals and sugars in processed snacks.
● Cancer prevention. One glass of juice is jam-packed with the nutrients, minerals and vitamins that work towards good health, improved performance and cancer prevention (especially if you juice organic produce). You’d have to eat kilos of fruit and vegetables in their natural form the consume the same amount of nutrients.
● Cleansing. Some use the juicing diet to detox and cleanse the body of built-up toxins and harmful fats. Always be mindful to follow the guidelines and never juice for too long.
● Weight loss. Sipping at that ice-cold sweet nectar - rather than a creamy milkshake or chemical-packed fizzy drink - helps you increase your nutrient load and lower your calories.
● Variety. The great thing about juicing is its variety - no two glasses are ever the same. You can change the ingredients each and every time you make a juice which adds to the health benefits. Depending on the time of year and the country of origin, fruits could taste different (sweeter/sharper) each and every time.
A juicer is a magical little device that provides a perfect way of adding more fruit and vegetables into your diet. It’s important to continue eating healthy portions of cooked (or raw) fruit and vegetables in your daily diet. Always speak to your doctor if you have specific dietary needs or need more advice - a qualified Holmes Place nutritionist can help too.