10 very healthy reasons to start juicing:
1. Juicing helps your body absorb nutrients. Many people have difficulty digesting certain foods and as a result the body doesn’t absorb all of the nutrients. Juicing helps to “predigest” the food for you, making it easier for your body to receive and absorb all that good stuff.
2. Juicing increases your daily consumption of fruits and vegetables. Slip a juice in when you can! Sip one during your ride to work or for an after-dinner treat. It all counts towards your daily intake.
3. It broadens your exposure to different fruits and vegetables. It’s easy to stick to the same produce day in and day out. For example, toss kale or grapefruit into your morning concoction.
4. Juice boosts your energy. Raw fruits and veggies help support the immune system and flush out the body.
5. It also boosts your metabolism. Fresh juice delivers beneficial enzymes found in the produce, which is important for the health of your metabolism.
6. Fresh organic juice can help fight disease. Through these liquid nutrients the body receives a sufficient amount of phytochemicals which act as antioxidants and can help fight diseases like cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
7. Juices combat free radicals. Juicing provides the body with a high concentration of antioxidants which can fight off the aging-effects of free radicals.
8. Consuming juice aids in hydration. If you don’t like the taste of water, or drink too much pop, fresh juices are rich in vitamins and minerals and definitely help to quench thirst.
9. Juicing is more effective than vitamins. Fresh juices have live liquid supplementation which deliver greater benefits than taking synthetic supplementation.
10. You’ll never get bored! There are lots of options when it comes to juice, play with different combinations: Try adding ginger for energy, or beets for cleansing. Stacking the fruits will help mask the taste of more overpowering ingredients.
One important note: If you are going to juice make sure the fruit is organic. When you juice conventional vegetables you are likely absorbing all the pesticides, herbicides, fungicides or genetically-modified organisms (GMO) stored in them. Because juices are so concentrated, your body will soak up those chemicals immediately. This information is particularly crucial if you’re doing a cleanse. After all, if you’re making the effort to enhance your health, you may as well do it right!
If you can’t get organic produce, though, make sure to wash the fruit thoroughly with a vegetable wash and then peel it. Avoid anything known to be heavily sprayed (strawberries, blueberries, bell peppers) or can’t be peeled (like berries).
As for store-bought juices, these are often pasteurized, which increases the shelf life, but deactivates the beneficial enzymes. As well, the plastic packaging used for juices, and their lids, can contain leachables (think BPA), which can be transferred to humans during consumption. Consider making your own juice to eliminate these factors, and reduce the use of plastic.
Another option to consider is a juice delivery service. You’ll have to look into how fresh the juice is and whether there any preservatives added to make the juice last longer. Also, ask whether they’re using completely organic ingredients and/or storing the juice in plastic bottles. It’s hard to know, so do your research before committing.
Marni Wasserman is a culinary nutritionist in Toronto whose philosophy is stemmed around whole foods. She is dedicated to providing balanced lifestyle choices through natural foods. Using passion and experience, she strives to educate individuals on how everyday eating can be simple and delicious.