Juice subscription services are popping up everywhere, and juicer sales are off the roof.
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Almost everyone went on a juicing diet and who can blame them?
Of course, one should reap all the juicing benefits.
Once, juicing was just a way to feed people whose stomachs cannot process a lot of solids. But when it became a trend, everyone thought that it is this special "eating technique."
So, how is juicing in 2018? Is it still the answer to your health woes?
In this article, we are going to talk about the benefits of juicing. We will also give you tips on how you can get the most out of going in a juice cleanse.
Lastly, we will also explain in detail how juicing works.
Thinking of going on a cleanse? Detox? Or you just want to be healthy? Then, read on!
What Is Juicing?
These days, juicing is somehow viewed as the surefire way to detox and just simply be healthier.
When people see someone with those bottles of green, red, or yellow concoctions, they are quick to think that this person is on a serious detox.
But are there really extraordinary benefits to juicing?
Is it not that juicing is just a different way of what you were supposed to chew?
Think about it, if you were going to eat salad when you go the juicing route, you just put in the same ingredients and process them until they are liquid.
Now, you might ask, what about the dressing, croutons, and what not?
While we are on the subject of things being kind of gross, let us remind you that some people add egg whites to their juices.
But, of course, juicing is slightly different in such a way that you really do not put a bunch of ingredients together.
Instead, you extract everything there is from a certain ingredient.
Due to this, a lot of people go for juicing instead of smoothies. There are also a lot of claims that juicing is more beneficial.
Juicing vs. Smoothies
Before we talk about the juicing benefits, let us first discuss what juicing is really about.
We touched upon this topic earlier and compared it with smoothies. But to further explain what is juicing, let us differentiate the two.
When you make a smoothie, you need a liquid base. This can be milk, coconut water, whey, water, juice, or the likes.
With that base, you have to add your other ingredients.
These can be fruits like bananas, strawberries, apples, mangoes, or any fruit you can think off. Some people also add greens like lettuce, kale, spinach, arugula, and other greens that are not too bitter.
If that combination is not enough, other people add nuts, grains, seeds, and energy or protein powder. Blend it all together, and you get a smoothie.
The consistency is quite thick and runny. There might also be some bits and pieces of the ingredients left there.
What about juicing? In juicing, you do not use a blender.
What you need is a type of kitchen equipment that is designated for the sole purpose of juicing — a juicer.
Aside from that, you also cannot juice a lot of ingredients at the same time. Lastly, fruits and vegetables are the only food that you can put on your concoction.
What happens during the juicing process is that the machine will extract all that it can from the fruit or vegetable.
This is the reason why you can only process one fruit or vegetable at a time. At the back or at the side of the machine, you will be left with the pulp or outer covering of the food that you juiced.
What you then end up with is pure liquid. There might be some settling of some light solids at the bottom, but it is not as thick as a smoothie. What you get is as pure and raw as it can be.
It can be slightly "cooked" as the fruit or vegetable was exposed to moderate heat during the juicing process, but, in a nutshell, the end result is just the liquefied version of the fruit or vegetable.
Is Juicing for You?
Now that you know what juicing is let us move on and find out if juicing will work out for you.
Obviously, this part of the article exists because juicing is not for everyone.
It is because our bodies were made differently and therefore, it will also react differently to juicing.
Remember that when you do this, you are just literally drinking what you should be eating.
Other than that, you really cannot juice meat products or dairy, so you are pretty much stuck with fruits and vegetables.
Why Juicing May Not Be For You
Juicing is not for you if:
- Your body cannot process a lot of fiber
- Your blood sugar levels are inconsistent
- You are used to eating heavy meals
- You are not fond of vegetables or fruits
- The thought of eating anything raw grosses you out
- You cannot be bothered to buy a juicer
- You can only get commercially produced juices
- You love meat
- You are currently on a diet or intermittent fasting
- You have an upcoming event that requires a lot of physical activity
- You are on a strict high-intensity interval training
The list still goes on and on, so it is really best to consult your doctor first before even considering juicing.
Moving forward, here are some of the reasons why you should be juicing.
Why You Should Be Juicing
Juicing is for you if:
- You are used to eating light meals
- Your blood sugar levels are normal
- Your stomach can process too much fiber
- You have constipation issues
- You cannot properly chew food
- You like fruits and vegetables
- You do not mind ingesting raw food
- You already have a set exercise routine that you follow every day
- You need to cleanse your body of the junk that you ate during your vacation
- You feel bloated
- You need to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your diet
- You do not have to do anything that requires a lot of physical activity
- You are constantly getting the common coughs, colds, and influenza
Just like the previous list, this list is not an exhaustive one. There are still a lot of reasons, but these are the most popular.
In summary, you really have to pay attention to your body before you go on a juice cleanse.
It is not something that you will try out and quit midway as certain effects may or may not be suitable for your health.
Do remember that juicing is not just a one-time thing, it is this whole regimen that you should go through from start to finish or else, you will not reap any benefits.
How Long Should I Juice?
Wait, so you cannot just undergo juicing for just a day?
Ideally, no, not really. But then again, if that is your purpose, then, by all means, you can go ahead and do that.
If you have a set goal in mind, though, then that is an entirely different story.
However, you should know that juicing is actually made to be done for at least two weeks.
After those two weeks, you are then permitted to go back to a healthy and satisfying diet. After a week of eating healthy, it is then recommended to go back to juicing for a week.
In short, after the initial two weeks of purely juicing, you can alternate juicing and eating normally every other week. Why is there a rest period in between?
This is the case because just like all other things, your body needs to adjust. It is also about maintaining your gut health because purely taking liquids is not very good for your intestines as well.
Further, the rest period will also give the organs that were working overtime in processing complex sugar and antioxidants that were rampant or on high during the juicing period some much-needed rest.
For Weight Loss
On the other hand, for those who want to lose weight, it is recommended by most stores that offer subscription services for juices to stick with a three-week plan.
This plan is actually highly debated upon because, up until now, it is still not sure if the juices are causing you to lose weight or is it because you are practically starving or depriving yourself for three weeks.
For an Immune System Boost
Alternatively, for those who have health concerns like frequently getting colds, or your immune system is weak, you can stick with juicing for at least three days, up to a week even.
The same goes for those who are just after a cleanse or detox.
The Science Behind the Juice: Juicing with Colors
If you are going to subscribe to a juicing program, you will notice that the juices are labeled by color. Do not be misguided as these labels do not only refer to the type of fruit or vegetable that is in your juice, but it also refers to the effect that it will give you.
If you sign up for at least a week, you will see that your prescribed juice colors are not the same.
Here are the reasons why:
Red Fruits and Vegetables
They contain phytochemicals, like anthocyanins or lycopene.
There are also nutrients that help with reducing cholesterol levels, lowering blood pressure, and improving your body to fight off harmful free radicals.
Accordingly, these nutrients are Quercetin, ellagic acid, and Hesperidin.
Orange and Yellow Fruits and Vegetables
They have beta-carotene, which will then turn to Vitamin A. It is good for promoting immunity and healthy eyes.
There are also bioflavonoids, which helps Vitamin C in fighting disease, healing wounds, strengthening of bones and teeth, improving heart health and boosting skin health.
Green Fruits and Vegetables
Your greens contain a lot of minerals, plant nutrients, and antioxidants.
To name a few, you have chlorophyll, calcium, folate, fiber, and lutein. These can help protect you against diseases that are life-threatening like breast or prostate cancer.
Purple and Blue Fruits and Vegetables
For these, you also have a lot of disease-fighting and health-boosting phytochemicals.
It is also the fruit or vegetable of choice if you need any anti-aging properties because they have resveratrol, quercetin, and zeaxanthin.
White Fruits and Vegetables
These have nutrients like beta-glucans, lignans, EGCG, and SDG that help with immune boosting activity.
They are popularly known as a natural killer of B and T cells from breast, prostate, and colon cancers. Further, they can also help in balancing hormone levels.
Juicing Benefits: The Top Four Benefits
As we have mentioned before, the effects of juicing are not really an exact science.
However, based on the nutrients that we discussed earlier, one can assume that, inevitably, there will be some positive effects.
Here are some of the most common benefits of juicing:
Better Absorption of Nutrients
Apparently, when you go through juicing, you are getting the nutrients in its rawest form.
Additionally, your stomach does not hinder the absorption because it has little to no fiber to process.
Since there is fast absorption, these nutrients are quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, so their effects are instant.
Promotes Weight Loss
This comes hand in hand with cleansing and detox. Your body will naturally or even force you to get rid of the dirty things inside of it.
In the process, you get less bloated, and you do not feel hungry because your body is already full of its needed nutrients.
Boosts Immune System
Again, you get the nutrients in its purest form. Therefore, they are able to act quickly to fight off bacteria and viruses.
At the same time, juicing also helps in strengthening your immune system. This is why they have coughs and cold packages in juicing stores.
Juicing also promotes blood circulation. Hence, your hormones will be at a reasonable pace.
You are more alert and happier because your brain is functioning at its best capacity.
Before we let you go, allow us to share with you some tricks and tips to get the most out of your juicing experience.
- Drink it fresh and right away.
- Feed the pulp through the juicer again.
- Focus on vegetables, just add fruit for flavor.
- Drink the juice on an empty stomach.
Those are what you need to know before you delve into the world of juicing.
Don't forget to stick to the plan and determine if this route is right for you. At the same time, do consult your doctor to be on the safe side.