Our lives have been hectic lately between summer engagements, planning for the fall semester (4 syllabi and everything that goes along with that) and dealing with a toddler who recently found his voice and thinks it is socially acceptable to scream in public places, I’ve had a lot on my plate. It doesn’t help that Joe has been working like crazy on his end as well. No breaks for this Mama!
When it comes to my diet, I have always been very conscious about my fruits and veggies. If I don’t eat enough of them in one day, I always think about it at night and it even makes me feel a little anxious, as if I let my body down in a way. Fruits and vegetables are the pillars of a healthy lifestyle and, unfortunately, they’re often overlooked at BBQs, work events, and other get togethers.
One thing we’ve recently picked up again at home is juicing and I am so glad to be making it a priority in our lives again. With a newborn on our hands, we always said we didn’t have the time to prep and clean the juicer, but really, that was just an excuse.
We were lazy new parents. That’s all.
I’ve been loving juicing so much lately that I’ve even been indulging in 2 juices a day! One in the morning (always) and one as a refreshing drink around lunch or mid afternoon. There are so many different options and I love that they can be kid friendly or spicy/sour (the way I like them) with added ginger and lemon juice.
If you’re interested in the benefits of juicing, but aren’t sure exactly where to start, here are a few tips from our household to yours!
First things first, there are two types of juicers: masticating and centrifugal. Masticating juicers usually cost 250 dollars and more, depending on the brand. They “chew” ingredients down to a pulp at a very low speed, extracting the juice from food without losing any of the nutrients. Centrifugal juicers, usually priced between 40 and 250 dollars, grind food into a pulp at a very high speed.
If you can afford it, I recommend a masticating juicer, which produces more juice and preserves important enzymes and nutrients in the food. They’re easier to clean as well, but do require more prep time (food must be chopped up smaller than with a centrifugal juicer.)
✮✮✮✮✮ rated :
Masticating Juicer: Omega® Model J8006 Nutrition Center HD Juicer
Centrifugal Juicer: Breville Juice Fountain Multi-Speed Juicer
This should be a rule of thumb, but is especially key for juicing, considering the amount of fruits and veggies you will be going through daily. At the very least, be informed about which foods are part of the dirty dozen and clean fifteen, as shown below.
The dirty dozen are the most contaminated and sprayed fruits and vegetables, whereas the clean fifteen are usually the safest to eat. In our houehold, apples, strawberries, nectarines, celery, spinach, cucumbers, and tomatoes are always organic.
When it comes to juicing, the key to not getting bored or losing momentum is keeping things interesting in the kitchen! To be healthy and satisfy your palate, make sure you always include at least one fruit for sweetness (we usually go for apple or pineapple), one root veggie (carrots or beets are our favorites) for antioxidants, one “watery” veggie (cucumber, celery, zucchini) for added juice, at least one leafy green (collard greens, rainbow chard, kale, or spinach), and one garnish (ginger, lemon juice, mint, or any other herb or choice!) to make it taste delicious. But remember to always shop what’s in season!
Here are three of my favorite juices at the moment:
Beet Juice :
Beets, Carrot, Apple, Ginger, Ice (morning)
“Wild” Juice :
Lots of Spinach, Pineapple, Apple, Ginger, Lemon Juice, Ice (mid-afternoon refreshment)
Carrot Juice :
Carrots, Cucumber, Celery, Leafy Green of choice, Apple, Lemon Juice (morning)