Let’s start with defining “juicing.” Juicing is a process that extracts juices from fresh fruits and vegetables. Why “juice”? Juicing has been said to boost your immune system, help with weight loss, lower your risk for cancer and other health issues, and provide balance to your digestive system. Drinking fresh, pure fruit juices also provides phytonutrients, which are powerful nutrients that increase the strength of your immune system. Some people choose to replace meals with juice in order to lose weight. However, here is the thing – all of those nutrients that you are getting from juicing are the exact same nutrients that you would be getting if you ate the fruit whole.
One major con of juicing (aside from the work, clean-up, and large amounts of fruit you would have to buy) is that you don’t consume the fruit skin, which is where all of the fiber is held, by juicing, you are actually losing some of the benefits of eating the fruit. Fiber plays a key role in weight loss – so if you are juicing to lose weight but missing out on the fiber, it is a little counter-intuitive. A great alternative would be to blend your fruit. This allows you to keep all of the benefits of eating fruit because you can still consume the skin. Plus, you can throw in some protein or fat for a balanced meal versus an all-carbohydrate fruit juice (because fruit is a carbohydrate) – that will likely leave you hungry shortly after! That being said, sometimes it is easier to grab a drink and go!
Is juicing worth it?
As with all things – in nutrition and life – there are varying theories. Based on the loss of fiber (a necessary part of your diet) when juicing and the fact that you can get all of the same nutrients from eating fruit – juicing might seem like a lot of work for a lesser effect. If you feel you are not able to eat enough fruits and vegetables throughout the day, juicing may help you get those important vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. However; if you are using juicing as a means to lose weight or in an attempt to get all that you can from fruit, eating or blending whole fruit is the better alternative.
What are your thoughts on juicing?