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What Do I Need to Know About Juicing?

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Kimberly Evans, RD, is a clinical nutritionist at Fletcher Allen. She has written a series of blog posts about nutrition and marathon training.

Kimberly Evans, RD, is a clinical nutritionist at Fletcher Allen. She has written a series of blog posts about nutrition and marathon training.

There is a lot of conversation these days about juicing. The hype can range from the perfect weight loss solution to an elixir that remedies all maladies. Like most things health related, there is no magic bullet for anything.  Health is built on a foundation of good habits sustained over time. So how does juicing fit in?

For those who enjoy juicing, it can be part of a healthy balanced diet. Some of the benefits are that it is easy. When is the last time you had a salad for breakfast? A vegetable-based juice makes it easy to incorporate portable veggies into almost every meal and snack, including breakfast! Juices can also offer a concentrated way to reach the goal of 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables per day.

This is also where some of the drawbacks come in. Juices that are made mostly of fruits can be a very concentrated source of sugar which can lead to more calories than you might expect. Additionally, because juicing removes the skin and pump, juices are low in fiber. This can be helpful for people with conditions such as IBS, where excess fiber can be a GI irritant, but most of us need to extra fiber. So, if you are juicing regularly, make sure that you choose other high fiber foods, such as whole grains like quinoa or faro, and don’t skimp on your whole fruits and veggies.

Here are my basic guidelines when it comes to juicing:

  1. Think of juicing as part of a healthy approach to eating
  2. Choose juices that are mostly vegetable
  3. Don’t think of a juice as a replacement for your veggie and fruit intake, but rather as a supplement

Some of my favorite juicing combinations are as follows:

  • Spinach, cucumber, apple, ginger, lemon
  • Beet, apple, lemon, ginger, kale, carrot
  • Carrot and tart green apple
  • Parsley, celery, cucumber, honeydew melon

When it comes to good nutrition, I am always trying to get people to step outside of their comfort zone to try a new food that might add to their health. Juices can be an inviting and colorful way to try something new. Even kids have a hard time not being curious about the bright orange, bright red, and bright green beverages! Start with a few sips and keep an open mind.

JUICING RECIPES:

Directions

You don’t have to peel the lemon, but make sure you peel the orange. The orange’s skin is very bitter and can ruin the flavor. Will make ~16 ounces.

Awesome Energizer

Ingredients

  • Red Apples – 1 medium (3″ dia)
  • Beets – 1 beet (2″ dia)
  • Carrot – 1 large (7-1/4″ to 8-/1/2″ long)
  • Ginger – 1/4 thumb (1″ dia)
  • Lemon (with rind) – 1/2 fruit (2-1/8″ dia)

Directions

Process all ingredients in a juicer, shake or stir and serve.

Simply Delicious

Ingredients

  • Apples – 1 medium (3″ dia)
  • Cucumber – 1/2 cucumber (8-1/4″)
  • Lime – 1 fruit (2″ dia)
  • Spinach – 2 cup
  • Honeydew – 1 cup

Directions

Process all ingredients in a juicer, shake or stir and serve.

Kim Evans, RD, is a clinical dietitian for Fletcher Allen’s Cardiac Rehabilitation and Prevention Program. Watch Kim’s interview with WCAX on the topic of juicing, by clicking here

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