Why I Don’t Juice

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Now before anyone starts jumping to conclusions about juicing or thinks “Geez, there is something wrong with everything” (I hate that feeling) – I want to make one thing clear: There is certainly nothing wrong with drinking vegetable juices. But there are a few reasons why I haven’t personally jumped on the juicing bandwagon myself – even after borrowing a friend’s juicer and actually trying it out for a week – which is what I’d like to explain today.

Juice and FiberJuice Is Not A Whole Food

First and foremost, my main dietary goal is to eat whole foods or what I call “real food” (i.e. 5 or less whole ingredients). Did you know that when you drink juiced vegetables and fruits you are not eating the whole food? The first time I saw a juicer in action I was actually a little surprised when I saw all this stuff being spit out the side. It turns out that stuff is the pulp (basically the fiber) and not included in the juice you are about to drink! Now you could technically bake that pulp into a homemade baked good or something (and still consume it), but I am going to tell you right now I would never be “Betty Homemakerish” enough to keep up with something like that. Plus I felt like the kale, celery, cucumber, and other ingredients I purchased to make the juice could have nicely supplemented several meals for the whole family, when instead the juicer transformed these ingredients into 2 glasses (about 10 ounces each) of not very filling juice.
A Glass of Juice

It’s Expensive

If you aren’t careful, juicing could seriously blow the roof off your budget. The first day I shopped for juicing ingredients I spent $13 – on just 2 servings of organic juice! I suppose that wouldn’t be so bad if it could actually constitute a meal, but after drinking our morning juice (my husband tried it with me) we were both still hungry enough for our regular breakfast of homemade granola. So during our week of juicing I found myself buying loads of extra veggies to juice in addition to all the groceries I would have normally purchased anyway. Cha-ching!

It Takes Time

Juicer Parts When you drink a daily green juice in addition to eating your regular meals it ends up taking extra time out of your day. Imagine having to make a fresh juice and clean the machine on top of cooking and cleaning those three square real food meals each day. I say that because a juicer is not just any regular appliance – there are 7 different parts that all need to be washed immediately. Which means unless you are about to start your dishwasher right at that very moment you need to stop what you are doing and wash each and every part of the juicer by hand. Have I ever mentioned that I am not a big fan of hand washing dishes? Well, some days I truly avoid it like the plague – so this is officially reason #3 that juicing is not personally for me.

My Takeaway

Like I said at the beginning there is certainly nothing wrong with juicing, and some say it makes them feel great (we didn’t personally notice a difference). BUT – as with most food choices – I feel that variety is key. That means variety in both what you eat and how you eat it. If you find that you are getting so much more green in your body through juicing then that is fabulous, but I wouldn’t suggest having that be the only way you get your veggies. And that’s because eating the whole food is pretty important as well. Nature actually does a great job of packaging up the perfect combination of vitamins and minerals in each and every whole food. When you start removing parts (like the fiber) it is just not the same. The takeaway I got from my juicing experiment is that – probably like most people – I have room for improvement and could stand to consume more vegetables. So I am glad to be given that reminder.

Now if I suddenly found myself with health issues or was just overall not feeling very well – I would definitely give juicing another chance. At first I wasn’t quite sure what I thought about the taste of a green juice, but it actually grew on me fairly quickly, and I came to enjoy it (and drink it much faster) by the end of the week. But for the foreseeable future I can only see myself being a smoothie girl, and here’s why.

smoothiesWhy I Like Smoothies Instead

I honestly never made (or probably even drank a smoothie) before our switch to real food, but now they make their way into our diet about once or twice a week. If you are new to smoothies or just want to kick things up a notch be sure to check out the “The 30-Day Green Smoothie Challenge” by our new friends over at Simple Green Smoothies. They’ve thought of everything when it comes to drinking your greens (the whole food way).

And these are the reasons I like smoothies so much:

  1. No special expensive equipment needed – any old blender will do!
  2. When you blend fruits and vegetables together to make a smoothie you are consuming the whole food.
  3. As a result, I find smoothies to be much more filling than juice.
  4. My kids like smoothies (they gave the green juice a fair chance, but were not fans).
  5. A little bit of veggies can go a long way in a smoothie – when I juiced a bunch of kale it seemed that only a couple tablespoons of juice came out.

Squooshi

Sponsor Shoutout: Squooshi

Fitting enough – I want to make sure you know about our sponsor, Squooshi. It’s no secret that eating food on the go (like smoothies!) in little pouches is a new trend – but rather than springing $1 or sometimes even $2 for a pouch of pureed food (and then throwing it away) why not make your own over and over again in these colorful, reusable pouches? Within moments of getting some Squooshi samples in the mail our daughters (ages 6 and 8) both already had a “favorite animal” they couldn’t wait to try. And we even sent these pouches in their lunchboxes a few times – with no mess involved. With so many filling options (applesauce, smoothies, homemade baby food, yogurt, etc.) these would make a perfect summer snack to take along on a picnic or to the pool so be sure to go check them out!

So back to the topic at hand, given the option what do you prefer…juicing or making smoothies? And why?

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490 comments to Why I Don’t Juice

  • Stacey E

    I’m always surprised when I find people insisting that eliminating half of what makes a fruit or vegetable what it is, is the healthier way to go. I can’t believe someone thinks using the whole food, rather than the extracted juice is worse for your health. I know people claim it’s more nutrient dense, or some other such nonsense, but it’s not. You are supposed to consume a certain amount of fruit and vegetables every day, and juicing removes part of what makes them healthy for you in the first place. The people who lost tons of weight with juice only did so because they drastically reduced their calorie intake, and most will likely end up gaining it all back. It’s no different than a liquid diet. It isn’t practical. I watched the Fat, Sick.. movie too, and I was impressed with what he accomplished, but not eating actual food is a horrible idea. If he continued to only drink juice, I’m pretty sure a whole new set of health problems would face him. Nobody knows whether he has any health problems now, just because he looks good. And he also, if I remember correctly, supplemented this liquid only diet with actual produce in whole form.
    Just because someone makes money off of a book by convincing you that their way is the only way, doesn’t make it so. People also believe in “oil pulling” and for a while believed in magic foot pads. Guess what the magic foot pads did? They contained vinegar so when they got damp turned a shade of brown. They weren’t pulling toxins out of your body via your feet. They were a scam, as with most of this “detox” nonsense.
    Eating healthy is not detoxing your body. Your body detoxes itself despite your diet. That’s why we’ve got all those goofy organs inside us.

  • Stacey E

    I’ve come to the conclusion that the people so offended by this post are mad because you’re challenging the nonsense they’ve been talked into believing. If you challenge something we’ve been brainwashed into believing, we’ll have to start thinking maybe there’s something not quite right about it. I drink pure juice occasionally just for the heck of it, but in no way do I think it’s superior or more nutrient packed than blending the stuff. It’s no different than people who are righteously Christian, then get all weirded-out when someone dares to believe something else. If you were really so sure yours was the only way, someone else’s system wouldn’t bother you so much. Especially since it has no reflection on your own life. I find the more people scream that theirs is the only way, the less intelligent that person is. And the easier that person is to be led in any way you want-for good or bad.

  • mrs. o

    We have recently started juicing. We have a masticating juicer which results in a “pulpy” juice (fiber). It is a nice balance between a centrifugal juicer and a blender. It doesn’t heat up like the blenders do and leaves more nutrients as compared to the centrifugal juicers. To bad your post didn’t cover the different types of juicers and it’s benefits. It was pretty one sided but I guess this is your blog so do as you please! Since introducing juicing to our lives, both of our health has improved drastically and our food choices in addition to a juice a day is MUCH better. It doesn’t matter to me that it cost us a little more and takes a little time, which by the way is as much time as any other food prep and clean up. It actually takes longer to clean my blender. But anyways, it was a “gateway” for better health and lifestyle changes so I am very grateful for jiucing.

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