Thursday, July 12, 2012

Eat More Veggies...Juice Em Up!

Just recently I have found a new hobby...juicing. It all started with a "Coffee Girl" a precious coffee shop in Kansas City that is the home to a large and in charge industrial juicer. I walked in the shop and having smelled fresh ginger, oranges, and kale I immediately knew I was doomed. My first juice at Coffee Girl was delivered to me in a huge mason jar with a cute little straw. I sipped and died all at once. After Coffee Girl I went on a mission to find my very own juicer. Any juice including a beet has to be my current fav. I have found juicing to be such a great energy booster after workouts or just a great way to start my day. Sometimes I can even substitute a juice for my morning coffee! (GASP! I wasn't planning to admit it)

First Juice at Coffee Girl
I've always gone the smoothie route in life and after juicing the past couple of months I was curious to see the different health benefits of juices and smoothies and find out how they compare.


 1) Digestibility

- Whole foods have a lot of pulp and fiber. This requires quite a bit of work from your digestive system. Juicing delivers a fresh and super concentrated supply of nutrients to your cells and tissues a lot quicker than solids and smoothies. The bloodstream can easily absorb all the minerals, vitamins, and enzymes with fresh juices.

2) Concentrated Nutrition

- It turns out you can consume a lot more vegetables by juicing rather than eating. Because it’s easier to grab an apple on the way out the door before work or school, we tend to eat larger quantities of fresh fruit and miss out on our 5-9 servings of daily fresh veggies. Juicing is a quick and easy way to reach that serving size goal. Just remember the 3 to 1 rule. 3 parts veggie and 1 part fruit. The fruit should just add sweetness. Your intent should focus primarily on obtaining the nutrients you receive from the vegetables.

3) Power

- Juicing can improve brain function and vitality, treat inflammatory bowel disease and arthritis and is great for detoxing.


 1) High Fiber

- As mentioned earlier, smoothies have lots of fiber from the whole foods you toss into the blender. Fiber not only fills you but it also encourages the elimination of bodily waste. Fiber is part of a healthy diet and fiber DOES have great nutritional value so it’s important to keep both juicing and smoothies in your diet.

2) Slower sugar release

- Juicing contains lots of natural sugar. Juices lack protein so when your diet is heavy in fresh juices without any protein to accompany it, you may spike your blood sugar. Smoothies also have a lot of sugar, but they can be paired with protein from nuts and powders, fiber from chias and flax, healthy fats from coconut oil, avocados, and fish oil to lower the glycemic index of your beverage so your body can absorb nutrients much slower.

3) Post workout support

- Fresh juices won't support the recovery your muscles need after a workout. Protein is needed after a workout and this can best be met through a smoothie and not a juice. Blending up whole foods in a smoothie after a workout can also replenish your electrolytes and glycogen stores.

Things to remember:

 -Almost all commercially prepared drinks have been pasteurized. This process destroys vital enzymes and heat-sensitive nutrients so preparing your juices at home rather than purchasing them from the store is best.

 - When juicing, try and enjoy your juice immediately after it’s made. The longer it sets the more nutrient damage and loss due to oxygen exposure. 15 minutes is the maximum time your juice should set before drinking.

Recipies to try:
5 carrots
1 beet with leaves and stem
2 stalks celery
1 cucumber
3/4 lemon, peeled
1-2 in. piece of fresh gingerroot

1 cucumber

1 fistfull kale

2 stalks celery

1 broccoli stem

1 pear or green apple

CHEERS to healthy sips!

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