Juicing Fruits and Vegetables: What You Need to KnowArticle posted in: Nutrition
Drinking your fruits and veggies seems like a convenient, nutritious and tasty way to increase your produce consumption. We’re here to tell you the pros and cons about juicing and how it relates to your healthy lifestyle.
Juicing can seem like a healthy eating shortcut. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), only one in every 10 Americans eats the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables each day. Due to the crucial role fruits and vegetables play in our health, it may be advantageous to supplement whole food intake with juice. Juicing provides the body with some of the major benefits from fruits and veggies in absence of the real deal. However, with any shortcut, there is usually compromise.
Before you invest in a juicer, make sure you understand the basics of healthy juicing and how it can fit into your diet. Read on to find out everything you need to know about juicing and the impact it can have on your diet.
Please Note: Always speak to your doctor before making dietary changes or starting a weight loss program.
Read on to find out everything you need to know about juicing:
Separating juice from raw fruits and veggies makes it easier to bottle and enjoy a wide variety antioxidants, vitamins and nutrients with every sip. According to Healthline, juices are more concentrated in these nutrients. However, it’s important to note what gets left behind in the juicer. There is no true duplicate for eating whole fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables are famous for their high fiber content that benefits digestion, satiety, weight management and disease prevention says the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Unfortunately, most of the fiber is left behind in the juicer from the peels, pulp and leaves of fruits and veggies. If you incorporate juicing regularly into your healthy lifestyle, ensure you are getting fiber from other sources.
Check the Label
While juicing can harness the nutrients, vitamins and minerals of some powerful superfoods, it can also contain hidden unhealthy ingredients if you’re not careful. Not all juice is made from or with whole fruit, so it’s important to read labels or make your own fresh juice. Stay away from juices made with added ingredients, flavors or sugars, as these are where calories creep in. Buy 100% whole fruit juice or splurge on a juicer to make healthy fruit and vegetable juices at home. Fresh is best!
Eat (and Drink) Your Greens
When it comes to juice color, go green to add a multitude of vegetables to your daily diet with just a few simple sips. While fruit famously makes great juice, it contains more sugar than vegetables. The natural sugars are healthy in their raw form but can add up in a concentrated liquid form. According to Mayo Clinic, juices can contain more sugar than you may think and can cause weight gain if you enjoy them too often. If you like juicing, try to stick to an abundance of vegetables and only add a small amount of fruit for just a tad of sweetness.
Potential Weight Loss
The draw of juicing has become intertwined with health and weight loss in the media. However, there isn’t an abundance of scientific research to support all the claims. A study published in Scientific Reports found that people who followed a juice-based diet for three days, followed by 14 days of a normal diet experienced weight loss and increased general well-being. This may shine a light on some of the potential benefits of juicing in moderation, however, more studies are needed to prove the long-term effects of juicing on weight management.
Rest Your Stomach
Enjoying a healthy juice made from whole produce can be a nice way to give your stomach a break from food. While South Beach Diet programs promotes adding a veggie servings in each day, sometimes you may be sick of the constant crunching. According to Healthline, whole juice made from fruits or vegetables is easier to digest than whole produce and may enhance the absorption of nutrients. You also won’t feel as full from drinking juice as you will after eating a raw vegetable with the fiber intact. This may be a pro or con depending on the time of day and state of your stomach.
The Juice Cleanse Hype
While a juice cleanse can promote a sudden drop in pounds, there are not enough studies on the long-term effects of juicing on weight loss and cleansing. Extended juice cleanses have been used to shed pounds and potentially detoxify the body. However, Harvard Health says there is no research that “supports the safety or efficacy of juice cleanses or fasts.” They explain a juice cleanse is not required to detox. The kidneys and liver are the body’s natural cleansing system and are designed to filter toxins from your blood. They also mention that these specific organs rely on a healthy diet filled with whole grains, fruits, vegetables and water to function properly. Eating a balanced and healthy diet will support these organs so that they can cleanse your body of toxins in a safe and natural way.
A Healthy Balance
The key to diet and nutrition is often balance. The South Beach Diet promotes positive diet choices that enhance a healthy lifestyle. A combination of eating and drinking fruits and vegetables can be a part of a healthy and balanced diet. For picky eaters and people who just don’t eat enough fresh produce, it may be optimal to supplement a part of the daily recommended amount with juice made from 100% fruits and vegetables. If you think you’ll be hitting the juice bar or buying a juicer for home, keep moderation in mind, choose more veggies and make sure to eat a balanced diet. While you should balance your fruit and veggie intake with raw, whole produce, you can still enjoy a healthy dose of nutrients from natural 100% juice.