Juicing has become popular among health-conscious individuals who wish to receive potent nutrients from fruits and vegetables in a quick and delicious way. What you may not know, is the health benefits of cold-pressed juice far outweigh the various alternatives.
Cold-pressed juicing is the golden standard when it comes to juicing fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs, and leafy greens. Using a high-quality cold press juicer preserves the maximum amount of juice and essential nutrients throughout the juicing process. This process ensures you are getting the best and most nutrient dense juice as a straight shot of goodness to your cells.
Conventional juicing methods for making mass-produced juice that you may find in your local grocery store use high heat and high-pressure processing. This allows producers to make more for less at the cost of losing nutrients along the way. They often contain added sugars and preservatives to ensure a longer shelf life.
While grabbing a bottle from the shelf in the store may be convenient for a modern lifestyle, it comes at a cost. The use of heat and additives compromise the nutritional value and with added processed sugars can quickly become one of the hidden unhealthy foods available.
Every now and then, you may be able to find a pre-packaged bottle of juice in the grocery store labeled "cold-pressed juice". These juices use high-pressure processing to eliminate bad bacteria in lieu of pasteurization. This process kills good bacteria as well as harmful bacteria, which can throw off the natural microflora balance.
Additionally, the beneficial enzymes extracted from produce only live for a maximum of one week.
Do not despair, we will cover the two most common juicers available, the benefits of juicing, and the best ways to add fresh juice to your daily routine.
Benefits of Juice
Fresh-squeezed juice from raw fruits and vegetables contains incredible amounts of essential vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, enzymes, and antioxidants that fuel the body's many processes. Many health and fitness experts agree that fruit and vegetable juice improves overall health, immune system, and brain function while protecting against heart disease and reducing oxidative stress.
Many people today do not get enough fruits and vegetables so juicing can be a practical and easy way to incorporate the recommended daily amount of fresh fruit and vegetables.
Juicing on an empty stomach ensures the nutrients go straight to the cells for a boost of energy and vital nutrients. Juicing removes the fiber and bypasses the digestive system which makes it a quick and efficient way to deliver nutrition.
Fruit and vegetable juice is among the healthiest drinks on the planet and holds a high vibrational frequency.
This is especially helpful to those who are working on releasing weight, fighting infection, and undergoing treatment for cancer or other chronic illnesses. When giving the digestive system a rest, the liver and other organs have a chance to catch up and regenerate.
Note: It is always best to use primarily vegetables with a smaller percentage of fruits. Using the 90/10 rule, (90% vegetables and 10% fruits) you will be able to limit the number of sugars and maximize the number of nutrients!
Smoothies vs Juice
Not to be confused with smoothies, which leave the fiber in the drink by blending whole fruits and vegetables. Fiber is an essential part of healthy digestion. Leaving the fiber in the fruit and blending it is still a healthy way to receive nutrients.
Blending and juicing are both excellent ways to receive the healthful goodness of nature's vitamins and nutrients. The absorption process is the only thing that changes.
Juicing gives the digestive system a break and allows the body to absorb the micronutrients immediately instead of little by little as the digestive process continues through its full process. Fiber slows the absorption of nutrients but allows them to be delivered to the cells steadily throughout the day.
With juicing, you get a rush of them all at once! Both delivery methods are useful in different instances, depending on your needs. Juicing works best first thing in the morning for a jolt of energy, or a replacement for solid foods during a fast. Blended smoothies work well for sustained energy throughout the day, especially when blended with healthy proteins and fats like seeds and nuts.
Masticating juicers are juicers that use the cold-pressed process. Using a hydraulic press, the masticating juicer (aka slow juicer), uses thousands of pounds of pressure to extract the juice from raw vegetables and fruits in a much slower more methodical way than its centrifugal counterparts. Masticating means "chewing" and does essentially just that
This extraction process uses very minimal heat which preserves the most nutritional benefits possible. Because of the slow nature of the juicer, it is important to cut the produce into smaller pieces in order to give the juicer more time to chew each piece and extract the most juice from it before it is fed another piece.
Another benefit of using a cold-pressed juicer is its ability to preserve natural digestive enzymes within the fruits and vegetables that help the body to break down and assimilate vital nutrients from the foods.
Cold pressing juice is best done immediately before you are going to drink it in order to gain the most benefits from your juice. If you want to make it ahead, you can preserve a few tightly sealed mason jars in the refrigerator for up to 72 hours maximum.
The centrifugal juicer is also a fresh press juicer that uses a centrifugal force at very high speeds to extract juice quickly. The fast nature of this juicer often pulverizes the juice in a way that subjects it to heat. The heat deteriorates the nutrients quicker than the cold-press alternative. It also often leaves some of the fiber in the juice which may interfere with the benefits of a juice fast.
While the centrifugal juicers do not destroy all nutrients, the juice they produce must be consumed immediately. The heat from the faster juicing process begins nutritional deterioration and makes the shelf life of the juice even shorter.
If you want to save the juice from a centrifugal juicer, you can do so in a tightly-sealed mason jar for up to 24 hours.
The benefit of a centrifugal juicer is the quicker process, and not needing to cut the produce into as small of pieces. The downfall is the shortened shelf-life and diminished nutrient value.
Choosing a Juicer
Undoubtedly, freshly squeezed juice is an excellent addition to any healthy lifestyle. Whether you are a hardcore fitness junkie, on a weight loss journey, fighting systemic disease, or simply seeking greater nutrient absorption, adding juicing to your regimen is beneficial!
Centrifugal juicers are great for someone just starting out on a juicing journey. They will help to get you into the routine of juicing regularly and work quickly on a tight schedule.
If you are working on a specific health goal, you can likely benefit the most from the maximum nutrients available. The masticating juicers offer the benefit of preserving all of the enzymes and nutrients that last for longer, without any pulp or fiber. It is the healthiest extraction method with the most benefits.
Whatever you choose, we wish you the best on your health and wellness journey! What type of juicer do you use? How has juicing helped you? We would love to hear about your experiences, share in the comments below!