Why go through the trouble of buying a juicer and making homemade juice rather than simply purchasing bottled juice at the store? While pre-packaged juice is better than none at all, its juicing benefits will not provide nearly as powerful a nutritional punch as freshly extracted juice.
Processed Juice vs. Fresh Juice
Consider an apple that is still on the tree. You will get the most nutrients from that apple as soon as you pick it. Now, think about how long it takes for an apple to be picked, turned into juice, packed into a bottle, and shipped to a store. Not only does the length of time cause it to lose nutrient potential, the process that many juice manufacturers use to make juice greatly diminishes the health benefits the apple juice provides.
Other reasons to choose freshly extracted juice over processed juice include:
- “Fortified” juices will have vitamins and minerals added to them. However, your body will be able to tell the difference between the real thing and fortified vitamins and minerals. As a result, most of the fortified nutrients will simply be flushed straight out of your system without gaining many of their health benefits.
- Prepackaged juices often contain unhealthy additives that are better to steer away from. Since bottled juices have to sit on the shelf for long periods of time, they not only lose their nutrient value, they are likely to include unhealthy preservatives.
- Many juices go through a pasteurization process. This heating process kills valuable nutrients leaving you with a less desirable end product.
- Many bottled juices contain added sugar. Concentrates also typically contain excessive sugar content. While pre-packaged juices may be fortified with vitamins and minerals, these nutrients will not be as beneficial to your health as the real thing. Your body will process natural nutrients from freshly extracted juice much more efficiently than vitamins and minerals that are added to pre-packaged juices.
Juicing at Home
When you juice at home, you can choose the most nutrient-packed produce available in your area to maximize your juicing benefits. You’ll also be able to drink the juice immediately, greatly boosting the nutrients that enter your body. Choosing local produce that hasn’t had to travel long distances will provide the most nutrients. If possible, picking produce from your own backyard is the very best option.
If you’re not ready to invest in a juicer, you’ll find that there are many health food stores and juice bars that offer freshly extracted juice. Most offer a wide variety of fruit and veggies for you to choose from. However, if you think that you are ready to begin juicing on a regular basis, juicing at home will give you the most control over your health and will save you a significant amount of money in the long run.
Getting the Daily Recommended Dose of Fruit and Vegetables
The average recommended serving of fruit and vegetables is five per day. However, your health will benefit if you can consume even more. Juicing provides the easiest, most convenient way to make sure that your reach or exceed the recommended amount.
Raw Vs. Cooked
Most fruit and vegetables provide a much higher content of nutrients when they are left in their raw state. The heat from cooking produce destroys important enzymes, antioxidants, and other nutrients. Cooking can also chemically change the natural structure of produce, which can release harmful free radicals.
There are many people who would find it difficult to eat several pounds of raw fruit and vegetables every day. Juicing greatly simplifies the task.
Choose a wide variety of produce and juice them raw. A few of the healthiest options include:
- Spinach is rich in essential vitamins and minerals. It will add a healthy dose of vitamin A and other nutrients to your juice.
- Peppers contain a high level of vitamin C and will add an interesting flavor to your drink.
- Dandelion greens contain an impressive combination of many nutrients including vitamin A, potassium, calcium and vitamin B.
Is Juicing Difficult?
Once you have purchased a quality juicer, you are likely to find that the time, energy, and cost of juicing is well worth the juicing benefits you obtain in the long run. Instead of relying on a cupboard full of nutrient supplements, you may just find that you get everything you need from regular juicing. Most people find that they get the time and energy they put into juicing back by avoiding serious and common illnesses.
It’s simple using a modern juicer. Be creative and experiment with your juicing. The juicing benefits will far outweigh any investment in time and effort that you have to make.