- Juice can be “a very healthy addition to a healthy diet,” says Jolia Allen, online managing editor for Vegetarian Times. Fresh juice delivers a concentrated dose of vitamins (particularly antioxidants such as Vitamin C), minerals and other nutrients without filling you up. Allen notes that a single glass of carrot juice may contain the nutrients of up to 10 whole carrots.
- You can put whole fruits and vegetables in a juicer, letting the machine do the work of removing the inedible parts.
- If you create the right combination of ingredients, fresh juice is by all accounts
- “Juicing is processing,” says Manuel Villacorta, a spokesman for the American Dietetic Association. “With any whole food, the more you process it, the less nutrients you’re going to get.” Removing pulp gets rid of a lot of fiber, and without skin you miss out on such “micronutrients” as carotenoids and flavonoids that have the potential to reduce the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease.
- Cleaning the machine afterward is almost universally regarded as a pain in the neck.
- Juice supplies a lot of sugar at once and adds more calories per ounce than whole fruit or vegetables.
WHAT TO JUICE?
Think green. Allen suggests going for green vegetables. These taste plenty sweet (toss in a bit of apple if you need it sweeter), she says, and have far less sugar than fruits.
Key nutrients. If you’re looking to boost your intake of certain vitamins and minerals, toss these in your juicer. For Vitamin C: carrots, pineapple, parsley. For calcium: kale, collards. For potassium: oranges, tomatoes, spinach.
Save money. Juicers go through vegetables fast. Allen suggests buying seasonal produce (such as strawberries and spinach) at their peak and freezing them to use during the offseason, when they cost more. Or buy in bulk from a local farm. Better yet: Grow your own.
Chill out. Because friction from the juicer warms up the juice, use frozen produce or toss a couple of ice cubes into the machine to cool things down.
Preserve. If you have a bit left over, add a squeeze of lemon or orange juice to keep your juice from oxidizing (which makes it turn brown) and save it, no longer than overnight, in the fridge.
Your choice of a juicer depends largely on what you intend to juice and how much you want to spend. Here’s a sampling of what’s out there, from low-end to high, including two popular mid-priced models.
Metrokane Mighty OJ. This citrus-only juicer is easy to use and clean. It’s so old-school, I actually own one but never thought of it as a juicer. All-chrome model No. 3506, $50 at www.target.com.