Juicing has catapulted to popularity in recent years. While many people tout the health advantages of juicing, some also point out its drawback. So, what’s the truth behind the latest craze? Is juicing that good for you? Will it improve your fiber intake? Are there any side effects? Is drinking food better than chewing it? Ahead, we’ll reveal the pros and cons of juicing for your health so you can decide if you’ll join the fad.
Pros of Juicing
Here are various benefits juicing offers:
- Consuming more produce: Not all people consume enough fruits and vegetables every day and meet the required daily servings. If you, too, are having a hard time munching these nutritious food items, juicing is an excellent way to squeeze them into your diet. By pushing all the fruits and veggie into a juicer, you will have a glass of juice which is undoubtedly easier to consume rather than chewing. However, be cautious about where you get your fruits and veggies. Stick on using organic produce so you won’t be drinking any hazardous products and chemicals.
- Better variety: Not eating enough produce is a concern but not consuming much variety is another problem. Fruits and vegetables offer distinct vitamins and minerals. Thus, the more kinds you eat, the more types of nutrients your body gets. However, there are ones that are seemingly harder to consume or don’t fit your preference. Yet, they are as equally nutritious as your favorite fruits and veggies. Okra, date, dandelion greens, Brussel sprouts, turmeric root, and aubergine, you might have rarely seen them in your kitchen or never at all. If you can’t eat them, juice them.
- Nutrient boost: Drinking 100% pure fruit and vegetable juice provides vital nutrients, such as vitamin A, C, folate, potassium, and magnesium. It results in better diet quality, both for children and adults. Moreover, these juices also contain phytonutrients or thousands of natural chemicals that bring various health benefits to the body, from anti-oxidant and inflammatory properties, reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases, enhancing immunity, repairing DNA damage, and detoxifying carcinogens.
- Improved hydration: While you know that you need to drink lots of water each day, chances are you’re still not getting chugging much water. Fortunately, juicing can be a fun and tasty way to add more water to your system. 100% fruit juices have about 85 percent water, making them very hydrating. However, they have natural sugars that can affect optimum hydration. Vegetable juices are a better option as the vegetable’s chemical makeup resembles the human blood plasma, enabling water to be absorbed at a cellular level.
- Maximize nutrients: You purchased fruits and vegetables from the supermarket and stocked them in your refrigerator. However, you might be too busy, so you forgot about them, or you simply didn’t like to eat them at the given time. Once you had the opportunity and appetite, you saw them limp or too ripe for consumption. Don’t throw them right away, but toss them into your juicer instead! That way, you reduce product waste. Plus, you get to extract and maximize all beneficial nutrients from your fruits and veggies.
Cons of Juicing
Here are the downsides of juicing:
- Low Fiber: If you want to increase your fiber intake, then juicing might not be for you. Extracting juice from fruits and vegetables means you won’t get enough fiber compared to eating them intact. Moreover, most essential vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients are found in the pulp and fiber, which are lost when you juice. While juice still offers a significant amount of nutrients, eating whole vegetables and fruits is likely to keep you more nourished and satisfied.
- Sugar overload: Though juicing means getting “juice” from vegetables and fruits, not all are made equal. For instance, fruit juices sold in stores are often filtered, thinned, or added with additional sugar. Consuming them will increase sugar consumption, putting you at risk of weight gain, cancer, inflammation, and heart disease. Homemade juices are healthier as you can create them 100% percent pure. Yet, that entails juicing 4-6 pieces of orange for a small glass, exposing you to more sugar than eating a single piece. Luckily, you can juice more nutritious vegetables, such as broccoli, kale, or okra, which helps control blood sugar.
- It can’t all be juicing: Juicing indeed provides the body with necessary nutrients, but juicing all your fruits and vegetables and relying on it alone may not be sufficient for the body. Fiber, which is lost during juicing, plays a critical role in digestive health. It keeps the microbiota in the gut active and healthy and allows the speedy elimination of waste. Of course, you also need lipids, carbohydrates, and protein from other food sources to get a complete, healthy diet for your optimum health.
Juicing has its upsides and downsides. What’s great is that you can use it to complement your diet and bridge whatever gap you’re missing in your daily recommended serving. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, and go ahead and juice the other. Juicing can be a great addition to your healthy eating pattern. Happy juicing!