Why I Do Not Juice- Busting Popular Myths About The Juicing Fad
Wait, I thought juice was good for you?
It seems like every health nut on Earth, me included, has been a part of the juicing band wagon for at least some moment in time. I remember when my mom bought a juicer and my family nearly bought out the produce section of our grocery store to juice about everything that could possibly be juiced. The juice was delicious, and full of vitamins and antioxidants. So, of course, juicing has to be the best thing ever for you, right?
Well... not necessarily.
First, I hope this will be obvious to many of you, but do not EVER do a juice cleanse. You need to eat food, not just drink liquids, in order to be healthy. You may lose weight with the cleanse, but as soon as you eat food again, you will gain the weight back. Even if you eat healthy foods. Plus, once you starve your body of food for long periods of time, you will begin to lose muscle. This in turn causes your body's metabolic rate to drop, which will actually make it harder for you to lose weight and keep it off. So, just stay away from juice cleanses, your body will thank you for it.
While juicing may be a convenient way for many who do not eat fruits and vegetables to get their daily servings all in one glass, there is one key nutrient that juicing does not give you, and that is fiber. Why is fiber so important when it comes to eating fruits and vegetables? It is a major reason (besides the vitamins and antioxidants found in them) why fruits and vegetables are so good for us. Fiber is essential to help move waste out of our bodies and it also helps to slow down the body's absorption of sugar. Without the fiber in juice, your body reacts like it would if you ate a glass of pure sugar water. Plus, juice alone does not contain any fat, which is essential to help your body absorb many of the vitamins found in fruits and vegetables.
What is a better alternative?
So, what should you do instead? Drink smoothies. Unlike juicing, that leaves out the very valuable fiber that is essential to your body, blending fruits and veggies keeps the fiber. This ensures that you get the fiber your body needs and that your body will absorb the sugars more slowly to avoid blood sugar spikes. Plus, smoothies taste just as good as juice. Another option is to eat the fruits and vegetables whole. It might be more pleasing to drink carrot juice, but it won't kill you to eat the actual carrot. I promise! But, what if you just cannot give up on the juice (or you don't want to see your expensive juicer just sit and collect dust)? It is recommended to add protein or fiber powder to your juice to help your body absorb the sugars slower. You can also eat foods that are high in protein and/or fiber while you drink the juice as well.