Benefits of Juicing and Blending

By Andrea Tritschler

Juicing is on the rise, having become more popular in recent years and gaining momentum in the last few months. With the rise of juicing, the debate between smoothies and juices is growing. So which one is really best, juicing or blending?

Juicing

Juicing is the act of making your own juice from fresh, (mostly) organic produce. Putting your fruits and vegetables through a juicer discards the indigestible fibers found in the skin, pulp and pith, which means your digestive system doesn’t have to work as hard to break down the food.

Juice master Jason Vale calls juicing “nutrient express” because without the fiber, a steady stream of nutrients are released into the bloodstream and absorbed quickly.

In the absence of fiber, your body can focus on cleansing and removing toxins.

Juicing offers other health benefits such as boosting your immune system, reducing risk of cancer, and aiding weight loss.

Unlike blending, juicing requires using an abundance of vegetables and only a small amount of fruit.

Holistic nutritionist and raw foodist, Ali Washington says that it’s best for your body, and your liver in particular, to avoid juicing copious amounts of fruit. “Fruit is best processed in our bodies when it comes with all its natural fibers, otherwise the sugars present are released to quickly into your blood stream, and your liver has to work extra hard to filter them,” said Washington. “It is best to keep your juice fruit free, or limited to small servings of green apple.”

Using too much fruit in your juice can cause a rapid spike in blood sugar, and if you make your juice too sugary it can add unwanted calories and weight gain, according to Mayo Clinic Nutritionist Jennifer K. Nelson. She adds that although proponents argue the benefits of juicing, there is no sound scientific evidence that extracted juices are better for you than whole fruits or smoothies.

Blending 

Unlike juicing, smoothies use the whole fruits and vegetables, keeping the natural fibers and proteins. Additionally smoothies are more versatile than juicing because you can put more than just fruits and veggies in them. They allow you to add calcium in the form of milk (proponents recommend using almond, coconut or soy milk) or Greek yogurt. You can also add things like almond butter, peanut butter or protein powder, but don’t get carried away. In contrast to juicing, blending doesn’t require as much produce despite the freedom of using more ingredients. This means you don’t have to spend as much on costly organic fruits and veggies, but lose some of the nutrients you get with juicing by adding more vegetables.

Smoothies have some of the same benefits as juicing. By blending the fruits and vegetables, it makes it easier to digest them because the fiber is already broken down, making the nutrients more readily available for your body than chewing. And by keeping the fiber -filled fruits, smoothies help keep you fuller than juices, which can sometimes leave you hungry. The fiber also helps to create a slow release of nutrients into the bloodstream.

According to dietitian Brierley Wright, the process of blending can deplete some of the vitamin C and some vitamin B by adding heat and oxygen. But, according to a study by Texas A&M University’s Department of Horticultural Sciences, blending preserves more nutrients in the finished product than juice. When blending a grapefruit versus juicing it, more phytonutrients were found in the blended grapefruit.

The Verdict

So which one is better, juicing or blending? It’s up to you! Both have great health benefits, but neither one reigns supreme, so when deciding on what to make a smoothie or a juice, it depends on your mood and what is good for your body at that moment. Just be sure that whatever you choose, you use the right equipment. Using a good blender or good juicer makes all the difference.

Look below for some great recipes for juices and smoothies and enjoy!

Jason Vale’s Lemon Ginger Zinger Juice

  • 2 medium apples (not Granny Smith)
  • 2 medium carrots
  • Ginger- 1” diameter or ½ a thumb
  • ½ lemon with rind

Green Lemonade

  • 2 medium apples
  • 1 cucumber
  • 4 leaves of kale
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 cups of Spinach

Fully Raw Sunburst Smoothie

  • 1-2 Large Pineapples, Sliced
  • 5-7 Pink Lady for Fuji Apples
  • Juice of 7 Oranges
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • 3-4 Leaves of Kale

FullyRaw Kiwi Green Smoothie

  • 5 Kiwis
  • 1 cup Honeydew melon
  • Juice of 1 Lime
  • 3-4 springs of Mint leaves

LifeRegenerator Berry Almond Coconut Smoothie

  • ¼ cup Raw almonds (soaked overnight)
  • 1-2 tablespoons all-natural vanilla protein powder
  • 1 Banana
  • Coconut meat (as much or little as you want)
  • 1/8 cup Goji berries
  • 1- 2 cups Fresh strawberries
  • Water of 1 coconut

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Categories: Your Nutrition

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