Juicing is an excellent method of getting essential nutrients into your system that your body might struggle to fully absorb. It is an efficient and easy way to ensure that you are reaping the most benefits from the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants in your fruits and vegetables in your effort to either maintain or achieve a healthy way of living. Even though I have been juicing for a long time now, throughout this period, I have made many mistakes. I am extremely grateful there were others to guide me along the way. I would like to share some of the common juicing mistakes that many people commit unknowingly.
- Diversity – When I first began, I only used the same ingredients over and over. The best part about juicing is the ability to mix and match a large variety of produce. By diversifying the vegetables and fruits you use in your juice, you are ensuring that you ingest the largest possible variety of nutrients and vitamins. This applies to juice cleanses or if you are simply incorporating it into your diet. Always use a multitude of ingredients. Besides, drinking the same thing every day gets boring. Shake it up with some variety. You will be glad you did!
- Toxins – In addition to the variety of nutrients and vitamins you receive from different types of produce, you will avoid absorbing large amounts of toxins found naturally occurring in many vegetables. Some examples of these include goitrogens, atropine, and oxalates. In smaller doses, these are not harmful. However, they can be lethal in large doses. Also, the more the variety, the better your body will be able to absorb the minerals and vitamins.
- Chugging – Gulping your juice is not recommended. Take your time when you drink it and truly enjoy every bit of it. Sure, it is a drink, but try chewing it a few times or swishing it around in your mouth, this encourages the digestive enzymes in your mouth to begin the digestive process. After all, digestion starts in the mouth and not in your stomach.
- Timing – There are two points to consider here. If you are not drinking it at the right time, then your body cannot fully absorb the available nutrients. Therefore, drink it at least 30 minutes before your meal and on an empty stomach. This ensures the vitamins and enzymes are absorbed by your body. Another thing, try to drink it as soon as you have finished juicing it. As time passes, the nutrients degrade as a result of oxidation, which breaks them down, and lessens the nutritional content.
- Meal Replacement – Unless you are completing a juicing fast, it is not meant to replace your meals. Instead, it is a supplement to your diet to provide you with the nutrients that you normally miss out on as a result of the absence of vegetables and fruits in your diet.
- Too Many Fruits – If you are juicing mainly fruits, then you are doing it wrong. There is too much sugar found in fruits. This will spike your blood sugar levels, leaving you to crash shortly thereafter. You should mainly juice vegetables with a couple of fruits each day to help sweeten the strong flavor that some vegetables tend to possess.
- Not Enough/Too Much Leafy Greens – Leafy greens have an extremely potent flavor that you have to grow accustomed to over time. If you put too much, you will most likely not want to finish your juice. Try only adding about one-fourth of your total recipe. Add more from there. If you do not have any leafy greens, you are missing out on the amazing health benefits you get from consuming them. I would definitely add some to your recipe. As stated, they have a strong flavor, so make sure not to add too much at first.
- Storage – If you absolutely have to store your juice, the shelf life is no longer than 72 hours, depending on the type of juicer you use. Additionally, if you use incorrect storage techniques, this will lessen the shelf life even more. If you store it, use a glass container with an airtight lid—ensuring that you fill it all the way to the top to reduce the amount of air in the container. A mason jar will absolutely do the trick. Try to keep it out of the light until you drink it. Once you open it, drink it in one sitting because you will not be able to store it any longer after the air hits it again.
- Type of Juicer – This is a common mistake made by many individuals. The best juicers out there are masticating juicers. Twin geared are best, but single geared juicers are also excellent options. Not only do these type juicers allow you to extract the highest level of nutrients, but they also give you the longest shelf life for your juices. Centrifugal juicers get the job done and produce better juice than you can find at the store. Yet, they simply do not compare to masticating juicers.
- Speaking of Juicers – Clean your juicer every time you use it! You don’t want bacteria growing on a dirty juicer. If you cannot clean it right away, at least rinse everything, and clean the mesh juicing screen. Trying to remove dried pulp and leftover particles from a mesh screen is the worst!
- Speaking of Cleaning – Make sure to thoroughly wash your produce prior to juicing to remove unwanted pesticides and waxy residues. Wash everything—even if you buy organic, which is recommended. There are many homemade produce washes that you can use or you can find them in your local market.
Finally, one of the biggest mistakes is that you forgo juicing completely. If you do not juice, then you’re missing out on a lot of essential vitamins, enzymes, and antioxidants. Juicing aids in healing of the body, reducing your risk of cancer, heart disease, and boosts your immune system. Plus, you will notice you have higher energy levels and better overall health. Anyone struggling with consuming the recommended daily servings of raw produce should definitely think about supplementing their diet with juicing. Cheers to a healthier you!