Most people blindly accept that drinking fresh juice is good for your
health, but a lot of people don't understand the reasons why.
Yes, any intake of fruit and vegetables must have benefits, but what benefits are specific to drinking the extracted juice? And are there any downsides to juicing rather than eating your vegetables?
To begin with, eating any fruit or vegetables is better for you than snacking on a bar of chocolate or packet of crisps, but it is also common knowledge that cooking methods such as boiling kill off a lot of the vitamins and minerals in live vegetables and fruits. The best way to consume fruit or veg is raw.
However, raw carrot sticks can get a little dull after a while. If you juice your carrots with a single gear juicer they will retain nearly all their nutritional value. Using a centrifugal juicer is a bit less beneficial because of the heat generated during the juicing process, but single gear juicers, or masticating juicers, work at much slower speeds so do not generate much heat.
The other benefit of juicing vegetables rather than eating them is that results are immediate. You will feel immediately energised after drinking a fresh juice as the vitamins and minerals are absorbed straight away, giving you a rush of adrenaline and energy. There is evidence to suggest that this absorption process may occur as quickly as within 30 minutes. If you eat your vegetables by normal methods, it will take much longer for all the live enzymes and nutrients to be absorbed.
Another plus side to juicing is that it makes it so easy to have a wide variety of fruit and vegetables in your diet, thus introducing a wide variety of vitamins and minerals into your body that may have been lacking in the past. Sometimes it can be hard to incorporate vegetables into every meal, but with a single gear juicer you can chuck in a handful of spinach, stick of celery, wedge of pineapple, piece of carrot and slice of beet and make one delicious juice. It makes it much easier to vary the vegetables you are eating and you can also be a little braver - if you are not too keen on a particular vegetable, mix it in with others that you do like to disguise the taste. Or you can add a wedge of lime which hides a host of evil flavours.
The main drawback to juicing is that the fibre of fruits and vegetables is lost in the juicing process via the pulp that is ejected. However, as long as you eat enough fibre in the rest of your diet this should not cause any problems. You don't want to replace the vegetables you eat with juice, you simply want to complement your diet by adding in a regular intake of juice. You may also read that you lose nutrients from the skin of fruits and vegetables, but my advice is to juice the skin as well (except for oranges where the skin is bitter) and you will retain these.
Most people notice a difference in their health and energy levels fairly quickly when they introduce fresh juice into their diet, so try it out now and you'll soon know if it will work for you.