Is Juicing Healthy for Weight Loss?
Juicing is a new craze that more and more people are following, believing it has various tremendous health benefits. When you juice, you basically consume all the minerals and vitamins that a fruit or vegetable has to offer, as well as all the phytonutrients (good chemicals) found inside them. Juicing does, however, take out all the fiber and it is for this reason that some people are questioning just how good juicing actually is in terms of a person’s overall health. We do know, however, that it is much easier for the body to digest food if it is liquid, and that eating fiber can be quite harsh on the digestive system. As such, juicing is supposed to help in terms of detoxing your body, as well as in terms of losing weight. So is juicing good for you or not? Let’s explore in greater detail.
What Is Juicing?
Firstly, you need to understand just what juicing is.
“Juicing is the process of extracting the juice from fresh fruits and vegetables.” – Spark People
In order to juice, you need a purpose-build kitchen appliance that extracts all the goodness. When you drink this, you consume all the water inside a fruit or vegetable, as well as its vitamins and minerals. The fiber, as stated, is completely removed, although modern juicers do give you the ability to add some of the fibers as well, making the juice thicker and, potentially, even healthier.
Health Benefits of Juicing
The first and biggest benefit of juicing is that you get to consume all the phytochemicals contained in those fruits and vegetables. Many of these phytochemicals get destroyed during the cooking process and even if we eat our food raw, they are often found in areas that we don’t eat. A bigger issue, however, is that we simply do not consume enough fruits or vegetables to really get the benefits of the phytochemicals. When we juice, however, we need to put in far more vegetables and fruits in order to put a good juice together, meaning we consume a lot more of the goodness. The top and bottom of it is that when you juice, you consume almost pure phytochemicals.
“These plant chemicals, known as phytochemicals, are the cutting edge of nutritional research because they hold the keys to preventing some of our most deadly diseases, such as cancer and heart disease, as well as some of our most common, like asthma, arthritis, and allergies.” – Healthy Juicer
Indeed, in research, it was found that in cultures where people ate a diet made up predominantly of fruits and vegetables, such as tribes in Africa, certain diseases that are common in our society simply do not exist in theirs. One example is colon cancer, which is a major killer in the Western world. The only reason researchers could find for these illnesses not existing is the diet.
Besides the fact that it protects against some of the more serious illnesses out there, juicing also has various other benefits.
“There is lots of research that shows the healing properties of juicing. Juicing facilitates weight loss, increased energy levels, strengthened immunity, strong bones and a glowing complexion.” – Living Greens Juice
How to Juice Properly
There are some risks involved with juicing. The first is the issue around fiber, although this is one that is easily resolved. The second is that people need to understand that a juice is not a replacement for food. Hence, although a cleanse can be done over the course of a few days, juicing should not replace more than one meal a day. This is because we need various other vitamins, minerals and other nutrients as well, which are not provided by juicing. These things include protein, calcium and carbohydrates to name but a few.
If you are interested in juicing, therefore, you first need to decide what you want to do. A juice fast is highly effective to detox your body and lose weight rapidly, but it is not something you can sustain for extended periods of time. If you simply want to replace some of your meals with juices, this is very easy to do. The recommendation is to consume your juices on an empty stomach, before you have your main meals.
“When you drink a nutritious healthy fresh juice, your body quickly absorbs all that you consume, wasting nothing.” – Juicing for Health
For best results, it is recommended to rotate the juices you consume. Hence, have vegetables in one juice and fruit in the next one. If you then also make sure you use different types of fruits and vegetables, you will have a balanced, healthy diet.