For some of us, juicing is resorted to only after the holidays when we’re in need of a detoxifying cleanse, but for others, juicing is a way to get all of the body’s needed nutrients on a daily basis. No matter your impetus for joining the juicing world, the one thing that’s for certain is that it’s gained wide popularity in recent years, from juice cleanses (we all know about Beyonce’s infamous cleanse she did in preparation to shoot the movie “Dream Girls” and if you don’t—do yourself a favor and go read about how difficult it sounds) to making juice at home for breakfast each day, juicing is an awesome way to pack all of the needed daily fruit and veggie intake into one vibrant cup.
But for all of the hyped conversation surrounding juicing, what are the real, tried and true benefits that come along with assembling your juicer each morning, shoving 20 pieces of celery into the chute, and yielding a cup of juice? Some people feel like juicing is too much of a hassle, while others swear that it’s game-changing for their mornings. Read on to learn more about the top benefits of making juicing a part of your routine.
1. Packs in the nutrients
Juicing is an easy way to get all of the recommended doses of fruits and veggies your body needs to operate in top form. Because juicing essentially presses all of the foods through the chute, it’s easy to pack many more fruits and vegetables into a cup of juice to drink than you would by simply eating them raw. For example, three large carrots, three large celery sticks, some ginger, two green apples, and a handful of spinach can easily be pressed into one large cup of juice, and you’ll have gotten far more nutrients into your system than you might if you tried to eat those same foods throughout the day.
2. Easier to absorb
The ways in which our bodies can absorb foods in different forms is known as bioavailability, and when it comes to juicing, lots of the nutrients inherent in fruits and vegetables are easier for our bodies to absorb into our respective bloodstreams. While insoluble fiber promotes healthy bowels but is unfortunately lost in the juicing process because fruit and veggie skins get removed, juicing is a great option if you have trouble digesting fiber. Because all of these fruits and veggies are getting liquified, your body is able to absorb the nutrients more quickly and circulate them throughout your body faster than your body could if it was breaking down solid foods.
Juicing is an awesome way to easily introduce foods with anti-inflammatory properties into your diet. Green juices specifically, which are packed with antioxidants and are rich in anti-inflammatory compounds can help boost and protect the immune system. If you suffer from an inflamed gut or swollen joints, juicing kale, celery, cucumbers, spinach, and adding ingredients like parsley, turmeric, and ginger, which all boast healing properties for an inflamed body, can help balance the system and aid in easing autoimmune conditions that cause inflammation.
4. Aids in digestion
There are two sides to juicing’s ability to aid in digestion. On the one hand, if you suffer from upset stomachs after eating a heavy meal—the kind where you feel like the food just sits in your belly and goes nowhere, then juicing is a great way to keep things moving and helps your body feel lighter, more nimble, and not weighed down by lack of digestion.
On the other hand, however, if you’re only juicing as you would on a week-long cleanse, then your body doesn’t have to really do the work of digestion. It’s important to keep in mind that your digestive system is a muscle, and if you don’t use it enough—i.e. consuming solid foods—that system will atrophy and in the long run you may have issues digesting solid foods regularly. When you’re juicing and perhaps not getting enough fiber as you would from solid foods, consider choosing a few items that you can supplement for an extra boost of fiber and protein, like salad, a FitJoy bar, or even lean proteins like organic chicken or tuna on occasion.
5. Detoxifies the body
One of the much-touted benefits of juicing is that it detoxifies your body. Most week-long intensive cleanses that require you to drink juice only are meant to do just that. When you decide to embark on a juice cleanse, your body has the ability to enhance the removal of toxins because you’re not digesting solid foods, and it has to burn more fat to meet its energy needs. Our fat supply is primarily what stores the toxins we hold in our bodies, so as you juice and begin to lose body fat, more toxins held in the body are simultaneously released, too.
6. Uses leftover produce (and helps you save money!)
How many times have you bought produce from the farmers market, placed it in a drawer in the fridge, only to open it and realize it’s completely browned? Or how many times have you just bought too much produce and haven’t been sure what to do with it? Juicing is a really easy way to cut back on the amount of food waste you produce in your kitchen, to make use of extra produce and fruit, and to help you save money in the long run by using everything you have before buying more grocery items!
7. There's variety in juicing
Juicing can tend to get a bad wrap when it seems like it’s just a bunch of bitter, liquified kale as your meal, but for those who regularly juice, there are tons of ways to combine various fruits, vegetables, and roots to make a delicious and healthy drink. It’s a fun way to try out new fruits and vegetables you typically wouldn’t be as fond of eating whole. Juicing offers tons of ways to tailor the drinks you make based on what your body is lacking. If you’re not a fan of making salads but need your dose of leafy greens, adding a handful of spinach to a juice made of berries is hardly detectable, but offers a punch of nutrients to your beverage. It’s a win-win.
8. Can aid in weight loss
While we really don’t recommend juicing long term as a meal replacement, doing a weeklong juicing cleanse can help aid in cleaning out the body and preparing it for a more balanced way of eating once the cleanse is over. Juicing, overall, can be a great way to start the process of losing weight because it’s low in calories, but it’s not a wise approach to adopt long term. Rather, a juice cleanse can help detoxify and kick things off as you incorporate a more healthy diet into your life over time.
Emma Trevino is a freelance writer who splits her time between Los Angeles and Wimberley, a small town situated on the Blanco River just outside of Austin. She's combined her passion for wellness and beauty with her knack for telling stories to help brands communicate their narrative in an honest way. When she's not writing, you can find her swimming in the river, growing veggies in her garden, finding tasty natural wines, and reading on her porch.