| Carrot~Apple~Celery~Beet Juice from my Breville Juicer|
| making a smoothie in my Vitamix VitaPrep 3 horsepower |
I received a letter I wanted to share with you today...
I read some of your blog once and thought your juices looked so good.
are just getting into juicing and I thought you would be the best
person to ask a few questions about it . . . an enlightened balanced
perspective . . .
it better to use something like a Vitamix and also eat the pulp or is
it better to just have the juice. One could also make juice and also
take all or part of the pulp after juicing ?
Can a Vitamix really finely puree things like kale, broccoli, or other more dry and tough veggies?
Are there other mixers that will do this better than a Vitamix ?
juicing, what is the best kind of juicer? We are thinking to go the
Dr. Mercola route of more leafy greens, celery, etc. and less of the
sugary things like carrots, apples.
It seems a juicer that produces less heat is also preferable.
Thanks so much for your help. It is deeply appreciated.
And here is my response to her:
Thanks for writing! I am very passionate about this subject! To answer your questions...
have the Vita Prep 3 (which is a 3 horse power version of Vitamix-
which is just 2 horsepower). But most of my friends have the Vitamix
(only 2 horsepower) and are fine. I know that the other "blender" that
compares well is the Blendtec. I would compare prices on the Blendtec
and the Vitaprep 3 and see what you find. Either one would be
fantastic! But in reality, a kitchen needs both a high-power blender
AND a juicer, because they do very different things.
In terms of which way, it depends on the desired effect, and also how much you want to put into it (literally)...
other words, for a daily, simple way to lose weight, get more fiber, using the VitaPrep 3 (or Blendtec) is great because you
are eating the entire item, so there is no waste. You will find that a
simple "smoothie" can fill you up for hours. At our house, we regularly
put in 1 or 2 apples and oranges (peel removed), 2 or 3 bananas, 3-5
leaves of kale (if the ribs are very firm some people remove them, but I
don't), any berries on hand (especially blueberries because they
improve the color and taste so much). If you have organic lecithin you
can add a tablespoon or so to make the entire thing creamy. You may need
an inch or so of water to facilitate blending, or even ice if you
prefer, to keep the heat down in the blender. It is fun to experiment.
Just put whatever fruits and veggies you have and keep blending and
tasting until it tastes good! Adding a few dates or raisins (soaked or
regular) helps naturally sweeten. I have seen Vitamix demonstrations at
Sam's Club and Costco where they put in zucchini or broccoli and yes, it
gets blended up! And don't ever be fooled by smoothies being sold
anywhere- they are usually pre-made sugar/dairy packs, and rarely have
any raw fruit.
If you are facing health issues, or just want
to have a quicker cleanse and an increase of powerful vital micro-nutrients,
then juicing is important. With juicing, you are receiving a mega-dose of micro-nutrients all in one glass (because you wouldn't normally sit down and eat a gigantic amount of raw vegetables!) This repeated dose of micro-nutrients can literally heal your body from many things. (My father is fond of telling how his brother cured himself of cancer by doing a juice fast for a month.) As for my juicer, I have a Breville right now and like it,
though the pulp is a bit wet (meaning it isn't removing all the juice. I
was using the Champion before and I still have it and like it too- the
pulp is much more dry. My friend who inspires many people to become
Vegan has an Omega juicer and it has very dry pulp also. My husband and I
and some of our children (whomever agrees) have been drinking fresh
juice for breakfast for almost 2 years, (ever since we watched the
wonderful documentary Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead-- I know it's a bad
title, but it is such a sweet and inspiring movie!) http://www.fatsickandnearlydead.com/
As far as what you put in the juicer, you are correct, as with any way
of eating, the more green the better! There is a simple, green recipe
in the movie I just mentioned that is all veggie except for 1 green
apple. I just think that if you haven't juiced before, adding more
fruits is actually a great way to make it palatable which will ensure
you will WANT to do it. Here is what we usually juice: about 8
carrots, 1 beet, 2 ribs of celery, 2-3 apples, 1-2 oranges (peel
removed), and about an inch or two of ginger (no need to peel). A lemon
added is nice too, but my husband does not care for the lemon, and
prefers if I leave out the ginger. Recently we have been adding the top
part of fennel (supposed to be great for mood) and it makes it
interestingly sweet in a different way, yet it is green.
No matter what you put in the juicer, you will have a lot of pulp.
I save the carrot (or carrot apple) and put it into carrot cakes,
carrot muffins, etc. You can use a lot of pulp for making "crackers" in
the dehydrator, but so far in my family I am the only one who likes
them! Still, juicing is a very powerful way to get concentrated
nutrients. If you are facing any kind of disease, or health crisis,
juicing is absolutely the way to go. I did a 10 day juice fast (as did
my husband) and although I never thought it would be possible, it was
fantastic. We both lost a pound every day, and after the first few days I
had plenty of energy and felt great! The weight as stayed off, and I
found that I crave HEALTHY foods now, instead of sugar/starch/salt.
The best juicing book I have seen recently is The Juicing Lady's Guide to Juicing for Health http://www.amazon.com/Juice-Ladys-Guide-Juicing-Health/dp/1583333177
but there are lots of colorful juicing books out there that are GREAT
for inspiration. On our 10 day juice fast, a favorite for me was
honeydew melon-strawberry. Personally, I wouldn't be worried about
fruit. I have even heard of people in the early stages of diabetes that
have done juicing and it has helped, even with fruit.
|Honeydew Melon ~ Strawberry Juice from my 10 day Juice Fast|
Finally, the biggest point for me, which is emphasized in another great documentary with David Wolfe, called Food Matters ( http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1528734/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1a
) is that the more raw food you consume, the better, specifically
any amount over 50% raw will show benefits. There is a lot of research
on this, and many great documentaries. It is not necessary to be all raw
to reap the benefits. I started my family of 6 by making half of each
meal raw, literally half the plate. And then I added in more fruit
smoothies as snacks, to tip the balance over 50%.
I generally eat
about 80-90% raw every day and that works for my body. In other words, I
have either juice at breakfast, and then a big fruit snack before
lunch, or I have just a big raw smoothie which keeps me full until
lunch. Lunch is usually a big salad, incorporating whatever fresh, raw, organic veggies I have, (as well as hemp hearts for omegas), and a bit of apple cider vinegar, so it is all raw except for maybe the
chickpeas and black olives I put on it. And dinner is sometimes another
salad, or sometime the salad with a cooked side dish or entree I made. I am very
easy about it, meaning if my family is going out to eat, and they don't
have salad, I just eat vegan cooked food. I have found through trial and
error that if I eat two cooked meals, and only the raw breakfast, that I
don't have much energy. However, if I eat mostly raw (that is two raw meals, and some raw snacks - no more than one partially cooked meal) then I feel fantastic and
have tons of energy. One other important thing- if the cooked meals have
dairy in them- my energy is zapped. I don't know if everyone will have
this experience, but I keep trying to have some cooked food, and some
dairy, and the dairy just wrecks any progress I have made in feeling
energetic and healthy. So I eat Vegan almost all of the time. It just feels good, and it is a kind way to eat, since the dairy (like the meat) industry is such a nightmare.
I hope what I said helps, that I answered all of your questions, and
I look forward to talking to you again, and hearing your experience. In
Fairfield, I have lots of friends who are experimenting with healthier
ways of eating and it is so fun to contrast and compare what we have
learned together! We also use the Vitaprep 3 to make amazing, raw vegan
"cheesecakes" that are incredibly beautiful and decadent- made out of
soaked cashews and other nuts. I have helped other people begin to
juice or use smoothies, as well as help other people who are interested
in becoming Vegetarian or Vegan. Even the climate where you live is important because it affects what your body needs to eat. Some people need more
heat in what they eat, others do not. I still think listening to your own
body in terms of constitution is very important. When I was on the last day of my
10 day juice fast, I was craving heat, and I put spinach and tomatoes in
the VitaPrep 3 with a dash of cayenne pepper and it made a drink that
was amazing to me, but my husband (who has a different constitution)
didn't care for it. I find my knowledge of Ayurved helps with nourishing
my family as long as we incorporate enough raw foods (since cooking
foods removes most of their nutrients) and do not do dairy. I am working on transitioning
myself to do healthy lifestyle coaching more of the time, because I love
helping people so much! Good luck with your journey!