Struggling to get enough fresh veggies in your diet? Do you often feel a little bit flat and in need of a energy boost? Looking for great ways you can get some nourishment on the run? Don’t worry girl, because at MNB we’ve got you covered with this guide to green juicing.
It’s totally obvious we are crazy, obsessed about all things GREEN, especially of the smoothie or juice variety, so to get you all super excited about it too, we are going to break it down and explain the bounty of benefits that come from fresh juicing and smoothy-ing (we may have made up a new word).
So why are green smoothies and juices so good?
First off, smoothies and juices are actually very different. Smoothies are made by completely blending whole fruit and vegetables into a thick drink. Juices, however, are exactly like the name suggests, and only the ‘juice’ from the vegetable or fruit is extracted for consumption.
Therefore, the main nutritional difference between smoothies and juices is that juices contain no fibre.
Fibre is a type of carbohydrate that cannot be digested by our bodies. This means that it passes straight through our digestive system without being broken down and without contributing too much to calorie intake. Although it cannot be digested, it is still an extremely important nutrient as it keeps our digestive systems super happy by promoting healthy stools and supporting beneficial bacteria in our gut. Not only this, but fibre keeps us feeling fuller for longer.
So now we know what fibre is you may be inclined to think that smoothies would be the better choice over juices. Smoothies are wonderful, but consuming juices has its benefits too.
So, there are pros and cons to both juicing and smoothies. But which one should you choose?
Both are great to have on a daily basis, but there might be a few factors to take into consideration before you decide to juice… or blend those greens. The next few scenarios may help you in your decision:
What will I need to start blending or juicing?
Unfortuantely, to get the most out of the fruit and vegetables, you do have to initially invest in nothing less than a good quality blender or juicer. Some cheaper blenders will just not do what you want them to do without a lot of patience, pain and tears. High-powered blenders however, get the job done in next to no time.
The same goes for juicers. You generally find with cheaper juicers, specifically centrifugal juicers, that the majority of the produce you are using is wasted. Centrifugal juicers ‘grind’ the vegetable down, and although are very high speed, they are not the most economical, efficient or beneficial to health. Alternatively, masticating (or cold-press) juicers, which ‘chew’ the produce, can get at least twice the amount of juice through its slower action.
The difference in speed of the masticating juicer also means that more nutrients are preserved (as the heat caused by the high speed action of centrifugal juicers supposedly denatures delicate vitamins and enzymes), and the juice is less oxidated, meaning that it can last for a few days in the fridge (unlike juices from centrifugal machines which must be consumed on the same day).
Centrifugal juicers are much more common, but do some research and shop around before you buy any machine. Cold-press masticating juicers, although a lot more expensive, are sturdy machines and can last decades.
So, why go GREEN?
When shopping for green leafy veg, fresh is definitely best. Avoid wilting, faded leaves and try to get organic, or at least local. Give your greens a big wash, even if organic, before using to get rid of any nasties.
Rhi’s Foodie Tips:
- If you can, make a few smoothies or juices a day in advance, this will leave you with no excuses to not get those nutrients into you.
- Start out slow. At first aim for a fruit and vegetable ratio of 1:1 whether juicing or making a smoothie. Then, slowly work your way down, getting accustomed to the taste, until you are using at least 3 parts veg to 1 part fruit.
- Change it up every once in a while by having a different coloured juice or smoothie every day to experience the benefits of a variety of fruit and veg.
- Use lemon or lime to prevent the discolouration of your drinks.
- Store your drinks in glass for ultimate freshness.
- Use the freshest of fresh produce to get the most bang for your buck.
If you sporty sisters have any more questions about green juices or smoothies… JUST ASK! I am always more than happy to share some nourishing knowledge!