this is part four of a series about our all natural and organic diet. Read part one here, read part two here, read part three here.
we got into juicing because we had heard a lot of our friends talk about it and we watched a few documentaries about the food industry (which i recommend you watch if you want to cut out bad food because you won’t crave certain things afterward!!! – at the same time, they also have their agenda so take them as you will…) here are our thoughts about juicing and what we’ve learned:
when you’re learning about health food and start researching, you realize that every time you open a can of worms, you open another can of worms. this is why i’ve really loved going all natural, there’s no justification or talking myself into eating something that has a ‘no’ ingredients. the hard part though, is trying to figure out what is really all natural sometimes, especially with all the gmo talk and everything. but organic fruits and vegetables as far as i can figure are safe.
but another thing i was worried about with juicing is that eastern thoughts about food recommend cooking all vegetables, and not eating them raw. there are various reasons for this but it’s interesting that it directly contradicted western thoughts and say that cooking vegetables kills all the benefits. so when i did my vegetable challenge a year or so ago (cooking one new recipe a week with a new vegetable) i cooked all the veges. now, we’re trying juicing with raw vegetables so far with no ill effects 🙂 i did finally learn on one of the documentaries that there are nutrients and micronutrients in food. the micronutrients are all the vitamins and minerals in food (the nutrients being the rest of it like fat, fiber, etc…) so cooking food gets rid of the micronutrients which is generally why you would eat vegetables to begin with.
some people are concerned with juicing because you don’t get a lot of the fiber that you would get from just simply eating the veges. here’s my philosophy about that, would i sit down and eat this pile of vegetables throughout the day? not likely, in fact i probably wouldn’t eat that amount of vegetables in a week. so by only drinking the micronutrients of that pile, i’m at least getting more than usual. plus, how do good habits form? by starting them. so we’re starting every morning with juicing so that hopefully throughout the day we will remember how we started it and try to make good food choices the rest of the day. just because you juice doesn’t mean you can’t have a salad for lunch or carrots for a snack. i’m pretty sure you can’t get too many veges. also, our juicer has two settings, one that is mostly juice and one that leaves a lot of pulp so we do end up getting some of that fiber.
another thing we learned is to not put too much fruit in the mix. the point of juicing for us is that we don’t get enough vegetables. fruit is easy to eat by itself, it’s not really necessary to juice mostly fruit. if you’re trying to add green nutrients to your diet, just put in a little fruit for flavor but use mostly vegetables.
some of our friends who have gotten into it since have had concerns about recipes and how to know how much to buy. since i hate wasting time/money, i found a recipe we could both agree on (after trying several) and we just buy the amount of each vege and fruit for the week (and i shop once a week) and that way i have enough but my fridge isn’t so full. here’s what we do:
3ish handfulls of storebought organic kale or 3-4 stalks of garden grown kale (i finally have my garden up and growing and kale grows SO well here!!)
2ish handfulls of organic spinach
5-7 organic carrots (best place to buy these is at costco for $4/10lb bag
1 large organic cucumber (most expensive item but important to be organic)
1 organic apple
1 organic pear
(i juice them in that order too because some things get jammed in there and this is the best way to get the most of each thing that we’ve found)
we love it…now. what i mean by that is that the taste is something you have to acquire a little bit. the first couple days were rough i’ll be honest. once i found a recipe that was easy and nutritious without too much sugar (fruit) i stuck with it and now we crave it. you just have to change your thinking about juice. it’s not fruit juice that is chock full of sugar, and it’s not a smoothie that is also 90% fruit with sugar added. it’s a great way to start the morning full of vitamins!
(note: these two pics were from when i threw some beets in…i loved it, jared thought it tasted like dirt so beets are out. i also tried celery but i think it’s too bitter of a flavor so those are out too 🙂