Vegetable juicing is critical to good health because it is an important source of raw food. Vegetable juice does not raise insulin levels like fruit juice. The only exception to this would be carrot or beet juice which function similarly to fruit juice.
Why should I juice vegetables rather than eat them whole?
Many of us have relatively compromised intestines as a result of poor food choices over many years. This limits our bodies’ ability to absorb all the nutrients from the vegetables and juicing tends to facilitate this absortion. Vegetable and fruit juicing is also well suited for the fast moving lifestyle which we pride ourselves in here in the West. It makes it possible for busy people to add more healing foods into their diets with minimal effort.
Can I make my vegetable juice in the morning and drink it later in the day?
Although this is much better than not drinking vegetable juice at all, juice is best drank freshly juiced. Vegetable juice is one of the most perishable foods there is and ideally it would be best to drink all of your juice immediately. However, if you are careful you can store your vegetable juice for up to 24 hours with only a moderate nutritional decline.
You can do this by putting the vegetable juice in a glass jar with an airtight lid and filling it to the very top. There should be as little air in the jar as possible because it is the OXYGEN in air that will “oxidize” and damage the juice. Think of a cut apple turning brown when exposed to air.
It’s a good idea to use an opaque container to block out all light which would also damage the juice and then store it in the refrigerator until about 30 minutes prior to drinking since ideally the juice should be consumed at room temperature.
What type of vegetables should I juice?
Celery + fennel + cucumbers is a good combination that is easily tolerated by those just starting out with juicing. Unfortunately these are not as beneficial as the more intense dark green vegetables. Once you get used to these though you can start adding the better, but perhaps less palatable ones in.
Green LEAFY vegetables are the best to use in your vegetable juicing program. All green leafy vegetables work well. The easiest ones to use include all the lettuces including, but not restricted to:
Red leaf lettuce
Green Leaf lettuce
You can then put in some of the other similar green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale and cabbage. Cabbage juice is one of the most healing juices when it comes to repairing an ulcer as it is a huge source of vitamin U.
Herbs also make wonderful combinations. Parsley and cilantro are great in vegetable juice.
One important note about the TASTE of vegetable juice
One major objection people raise when talking about vegetable juicing is the TASTE. They can’t stand it. THERE IS A SOLUTION: I highly recommend you use a few seedless grapes in your vegetable juice. It’s a fantastic way to improve the taste of your juice. Adding 2-3 apples also works well.
You must rotate the vegetables you are using in your vegetable juicing program! It is very important to not have the same vegetables every day. Chances are quite high that if you keep juicing the same vegetables for any significant length of time you will become allergic to them. Variety is king.
Cleaning up your juicer is important
It’s important to clean your juicer immediately after you juice to prevent it from contaminating the juicer with mold growth.
Adding essential oils to your vegetable juice
Because vegetable juice has virtually no fat and no protein in it, it’s a good idea to balance the meal by adding some essential oils when you juice as well as some protein supplement to make the meal more balanced.
There are 4 basic supplements you could use:
Fish Oil (EPA/DHA) (source of omega 3 fatty acids)
Flaxseed oil (source of omega 3 fatty acids)
Cod Liver Oil (has vitamin D and vitamin A in addition to the EPA/DHA of fish oil.)
Evening Primrose Oil (source of omega 6 fatty acids)
Juicing as a way of fasting
Consuming nothing but fresh, diluted juices from various fruits and vegetables for a day or more is a safe and helpful form of fasting. I believe that juice fasting actually works better than a straight water fast, because it helps to eliminate wastes, old or dead cells while building new tissues with the easily accessible nutrients from the juices. The more drastic water fast is more intense, often resulting in more sickness and less energy, than fasting with fruit and vegetable juices.
When juicing, always make sure to use clean filtered water as you do not want chlorine to be a part of your diet.
There is an unfortunate tendency in the U.S., and in U.S. doctors, to look for health in drugs and medications, instead of natural methods which support the body and PREVENT disease, such as juicing. Of course pharmaceutical companies don’t make any money by telling you to eat your greens.