17 Jan Juicing With Fresh Produce to Bring in the New Year
My number one New Year’s resolution this year is to get up 5 minutes earlier to ensure that I can prepare my green smoothie for the day (or whatever colour, depending what is left in the fridge!) Extracting juice using a juicer leaves behind the fibre, but fibre is important because it has an influence on the digestion process from start to finish:
- Fibre makes food more satisfying, probably because the contents of the stomach are bulkier and stay there longer.
- Fibre slows digestion and absorption so that glucose (sugar) in food enters the bloodstream more slowly, which keeps blood sugar on a more even level.
- Fibre is broken down in the colon (the main part of the large intestine) by bacteria (a process called fermentation), and the simple organic acids produced by this breakdown helps to nourish the lining of the colon.
- These acids also provide fuel for the rest of the body, especially the liver, and may have an important role in metabolism.
The best way to avoid losing out on these great benefits of fibre is to blend fruit and vegetables in a high speed blender, adding water. This way, the fibre is blended into the juice, not separated from it.
New Year’s resolution number two is to get up early on a Sunday morning and head down to the local farmers market, to buy locally sourced fruit and vegetables for the coming week. I get a real thrill when my friendly market gardener gives me advice on the best produce and tells me it was picked the night before. It hasn’t been stored or transported long distances in refrigerated lorries- the produce is as fresh as possible, and that translates into optimal nutritional density.
Tips for blending:
- Consume juice as soon as possible as light, heat and air initiate oxidation, which reduces vitamin and mineral content
- Add pithy part of citrus fruit, under the peel as this contains the highest concentration of flavanoids and vitamin C
- Add fresh herbs, fennel, grated ginger, mint or coriander
- In summer add ice cubes
- For a fuller breakfast in a rush I add a plant based protein powder, LSA ( linseeds, sunflower seeds and almonds in a ground form), teaspoon of coconut oil
- Freeze bananas unpeeled to add to smoothie, that way they keep longer and reduce temperature
- Add yoghurt or dairy free coyo (coconut yoghurt) for a creamier taste
- Half an avocado also adds a creamy texture
- Grated root vegetables before blending
- Avoid waxed fruit as wax may tap residue from pesticides
- Where possible buy organic
Here are a couple of great juicing recipes to get you started:
- ½ avocado
- 1 banana
- A handful of baby spinach or romaine lettuce
- Coconut water/ plain water
- 1 Teaspoon cacao
- A sprinkle of cinnamon
Beginners Green Smoothie
- 6 biggish silver beet leaves/ or large handful of baby spinach
- Small lemon with skin taken off
- 1 Nashi Pear
- 1 Banana
- Big cup of water
- ½ an orange
- Blend and enjoy