Speak to any master nutritionist and you’ll be told that until you’re getting at least five servings of vegetables and two servings of fruit daily, you’re not going to achieve the kind of optimal health you deserve. One simple solution is to juice your fruit and veg, so you get all those nutrients and vitamins in one glass. However, juicing is not as simple as squashing the juice out of some celery and apples.
Take a look at the juicing tips from the experts.
1. Buy the right juicer
Yes, you can buy the cheapo juicer. But then you shouldn’t expect it to do a good job at your juicing. Some features to look for are that:
- It’s easy to use, but has multiple speeds (you will use a lower speed for your softer fruit/veg).
- It’s easy to clean (ideally, you can throw the parts into the dishwasher).
- It yields a lot of juice, and the pulp that’s left over is very dry.
- The feeder tube (where you put the fruit/veg in) is large enough to accommodate large chunks – otherwise, you’ll spend hours every day chopping your fruit/veg into teensy bits and pieces.
If you’re just starting out at juicing, try a . Once you’re committed to juicing and have the bucks to buy a very fancy appliance, then you can splash out on a twin-gear juicer.
Oh, and make sure you always clean your juicer correctly, otherwise, it’ll become a trap for bacteria.
2. Avoid too many fruit servings per juice
Fruit is high in sugars (fructose). And while you only eat say, one orange, per sitting, when you’re making a glass orange juice, you need three or four oranges. You can see how juice can quickly become a calorie bomb!
Experts recommend you juice vegetables (especially green veg) with say, one piece of sweet fruit to ensure you’re not consuming too much sugar.
3. Don’t throw out all the pulp
Keep some of the pulp from the juicing process. Mix it back into your juice, or use it in your breakfast food. This insoluble fibre is an important regulator of your blood sugar levels, and is also good for your digestive system.
4. Drink it soon!
The vitamins, nutrients and enzymes in your juice won’t survive for long. Drink your juice within 15 minutes of making it. And if you do need to store some juice, make sure it’s in an airtight container, in the fridge.
5. Drink your juice on an empty tummy
This is especially true if you drink green juice. Drink your juice at least an hour after any meal (or first thing in the morning), and then wait 20-30 minutes before consuming anything else. Otherwise, you may feel a little queasy. Plus, you won’t get the full benefit of all those raw nutrients hitting your digestive system.
Also, try to “chew” your juice, letting it swirl around in your mouth. This stimulates the production of saliva – a digestive enzyme that helps your body break down food and absorb nutrients. And that’s the goal – to absorb nutrients.
6. Don’t treat your juice like a complete meal
There are a lot of “liquid diets” out there, promising you fast weight-loss and fabulous good health. But the reality is that fruit and veg juice, alone, won’t sustain you. It simply isn’t good for you, unless you’re doing a very short cleansing fast (max, three days). Remember, you need lean proteins and fats to be healthy.
7. Variety is critical
Don’t stick to the same juice recipe day after day. Make a difference juice every day, and make it your goal to get through as many of the difference veg and fruit as possible. Not only is the variety good for you, but you also avoid over-loading your body with certain chemicals that are present in some fruit and veg. For example:
- If you consume too many carrots and tomatoes – which are high in carotene – will make your skin turn a shade of ‘fake tan orange’.
- Likewise, some green veg are high in oxalate – a compound that affects the thyroid gland negatively if you consume too much of it.
If the pursuit of good nutrition is your passion, why not turn it into your career? Sign up to Trifocus Fitness Academy’s Specialised Nutrition Certification today.