Should your online grocery shopping list be filled with fresh juices?
Everybody knows that fruits and vegetables are efficacious for physical well-being but what about the trend of extracting juices that has been proliferating in recent years. Proponents of juicing claim that it improves absorption of nutrients in the body and hence we see product catalogues filled of our online grocery store with all sorts of juices. Antagonists, on the other hand claim that such processes rip the fruits and vegetables off of the nutritional value contained within the pulp and most of the solid matter. Contemporary life and popular culture has established that we love our juices as our go to vitalizing staple but few people realize the pivotal considerations with regards to getting our juices fresh and methods of extraction. Most of us often feel great consuming a cold glass of juice but only few critically analyze whether or not their prudent feelings are in consonance with the actual ingredients of their fluid intake.
Juice and smoothie, what is the difference exactly?
There are a few ways of juicing fruits and vegetables while making smoothies is a different process altogether. Smoothies are basically made but putting chunks of veggies and fruit in the blender and thus have a consistency similar to milkshakes. Juices, on the other hand, typically have lesser viscosity as they are generally produced by squeezing fruit by hand or by using juicers driven by motors. Smoothies in that sense are the answer to juicing critics in the sense that no pulp or solid matter is filtered in the process. There are two types of most commonly used juicers namely cold-press juicers and centrifugal juicers. The former are the ones that press and crush the fruits and vegetables in a slower manner in order to extract the maximum quantity of juice while the latter chop everything down in to a pulp with a fast paced spinning blade cutter. The proponents of juicing believe that juice consumption helps balance our diet because given the vast variety of foods that different cultures and societies across the globe consume it becomes really hard for some people to specific fruits and vegetables to certain meals at particular times through the day. Juices in that sense make it easier and quicker for most people to add a bunch of healthy nutrients to their diet without as much effort.
Rich in nutrition or just futile repetition?
Getting essentials nutrients from our diet is becoming increasingly important and difficult at the same time. Our environments continue to degenerate due to factors like pollution, climate change and higher stress levels. The changes in overall ecosystem call for a strengthening of our biological systems so we can continue to cope and survive. However, modern food processing methods and eating trends have further distanced the actual fresh produce from most of the meals we end up consuming. Look at the proportion of your online grocery store carts as a test case and evaluate what proportion of the food items you buy are actually fresh fruits and vegetables versus how much of it are packaged or processed items. If you’re skewed towards the former you’re actually following the standards set by nutritionists and health experts. However, if you are leaning towards the latter you might want to reconsider your life choices.
Fruits and veggies are laden with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that are known to provide protection against a profusion of diseases. Several studies have found out that adding vegetable and fruit juices to your diet can help increase a vast array of nutrients in your body, including vitamin E, vitamin C, selenium and beta carotene. But whether or not juices protect you against the onslaught of diseases remains under discussion as research data is still limited on the matter. There is evidence still that the risk of such health issues is minimized with regular consumption. These beneficial properties primarily result from the high antioxidant, fiber, vitamin and mineral content. Fiber also binds to certain antioxidants which get released when inside of the digestive system. Research limitations do make it a little hard to point towards specific health benefits but all in all a myriad of biological functions benefit from a regular intake of juices. Pomegranate and apple juices, for instance, are correlated to reduction in cholesterol levels and blood pressure. This in turn reduces the propensity for developing cardiac conditions. Furthermore, oxidative stress and homocysteine levels are also reduced by fruit and veg juice consumption which is also ultimately beneficial for the heart. Increasing consumption of veg and fruit juices from less than once a week to three or more times has shown a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s as well. This risk reduction is mainly attributed to high polyphenol content that provide brain cells protections and are antioxidants present in plant based foods. Regardless of such derivations, more research data can shed further light on the exact health impact of these juices.