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Juicing

I watched the documentaries “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead” and “Hungry for Change”, and they made a distinct impression on me. I would like to try the juicing fast, but there is so much conflicting information on the web about it, how’s a girl to know what true and what’s just opinion? Will it do damage or help me rewire my brain to break the carb/sugar dependencies.

Answer:

I don’t think the juicing diet is going to rewire your brain as such, but it may be a useful tool for weight loss. There have been quite a few anecdotal cases where people have successfully lost weight on the juicing diet. Compared to some of the other diets such as slim fast and other programs using processed food products or meal replacements, I would say I prefer the juice fast diet. Juicing is a great way to get to some valuable nutrients into people whose diet is deficient. It can also work quite well for those who are significantly overweight and need to make drastic weight loss. What I would say is that juicing does remove most of the fiber from the fruit and vegetables that you use, so it is important to get the right balance of fruit and veg in your juice drink. Fruit and some vegetables can contain a lot of sugar. I have come across many cases where people are following a juice diet and using a huge amount of fruit and wondering they are not losing any weight. The simple reason is they are still consuming a lot of calories and those calories are from sugar. Consuming fiber helps slow down the rate of absorption, and keeps insulin levels low so fat storage is not promoted. If you want to follow the juice diet, I would suggest that you make your juice with a ratio of 2-3 servings of vegetables to 1 serving of fruit. Look for low calorie fruits such as peaches, strawberries, blackberries and raspberries. Vegetables tend to have less calories so think of the fruit as the sweetener to make the vegetable juice more palatable, rather than being the main ingredient. I don’t know what plan you are following, but for example of you are juicing for two meals and eating one solid food meal a day, make sure that meal has a good source of fiber in it. Whether its your breakfast, lunch or dinner, try to eat either sugar free whole grain cereals, oatmeal, whole bran or brown rice, whole grain bread or pasta along with some fiber rich vegetables.

Do certain vegetable of fruits counteract others?

I recently started juicing every morning. I’ve been making a drink of numerous ingredients thinking it would be best. A friend suggested maybe not for the above reason. today I had a combo of carrot, kale, rutabaga, celery, radish, cucumber, ginger, pear, apple, blueberries, honeydew, banana, apple cider vinegar w/the mother and ginseng extract. I love it and say the more the merrier. Now, I’m not so sure. Am I getting the full benefits or is there something I shouldn’t mix?

Answer:

I wouldn’t say that the fruits/vegetables would counteract each other. However I would say that there are probably some combinations that are better than others. For example carrot and kale are both rich in Beta Carotene, if you are consuming a lot of these particular vegetables on a daily basis in juice form it is possible to consume more than your recommended daily allowance. Also certain fruits have a much higher content that others and making a juice with a lot of fruit can result in consuming a large amount of sugar. Again if you are drinking a lot of sugary juice this may lead to weight gain. The juicing process also removes all the fiber from the fruit that slows the digestive process, the rate of sugar absorption and helps to regulate insulin levels. For example just taking the fruit you have mentioned in your smoothie plus a couple of vegetables you listed, would come to about 600-700 calories in one drink this is 1/4 of your daily calorie allowance. Your profile page was not complete so I couldn’t tell what your diet is like but if you were consuming this juice in addition to your regular 3 meals a day, then potentially you have a calorie excess. Now with all that said the above is really just to highlight and make you aware that as with anything, its possible to overdose on a good thing. However I would say juicing is still a valuable way to get some useful nutrients in your diet and that you should continue! My suggestion would be to reduce the total number items from say 15 in your example to at least half that. Bearing in mind that vegetables tend to have less sugars in them, that you try aim for a two to one ratio of vegetables to fruit. So if you have six items in your juice make 4 of them veg and 2 of them fruit. Also you can vary the combinations over the course of the week so you have a bit of variety. I think its great that you are also adding some herbs into the mix, these are low calorie items and have their own benefits too.

Raw juicing and calories

I am trying to lose weight, and stick to about 1400 calories a day. I juice once a day. Mostly veggies and a couple fruits. So I’m wondering, do I have to count this as part of my daily calories? I’ve heard some say no because it goes right into your system or something. I would just like some clarification. Thanks:)

Answer:

Regarding your question, fruit and vegetable juice does need to be counted as calories. The natural sugars and starches in vegetables will provide a source of calories. However based on the fact that you are following a very low calorie diet I would not be too concerned about the additional calories from the juice. If anything I would recommend this, as when following a very low calorie diet, its very important to ensure that your diet is balanced, so as to prevent developing any kind of nutritional deficiencies. The juice will provide a variety of anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals to your diet. You should be aware though, that the process of juicing does remove the majority of the fiber found in fruit and veg. Fiber in itself is an important component to include in a weight loss diet, as it helps absorb fat from your diet, lowers cholesterol and also slows the absorption of sugars and helps improve blood sugar levels. I would recommend if you are not already doing so, to consume some of the fruit and veg in a non juiced form to make sure you are getting adequate fiber. Additionally including cereals such as oatmeal, sugar free mini wheats or bran flakes will ensure you are consuming both forms of beneficial soluble and insoluble fiber. Finally as a side note regarding very low calorie diets, I would suggest that you consider introducing the occasional cheat day once a week. If done long term, Very low calorie diets can negatively impact the hormones that regulate the metabolism and appetite, which in turn will slow your weight loss progress. Introducing a cheat day, allows your body to “reset” itself so that you make better progress long term.

juices for breakfast

Hello, I am looking to become less dependent on added sugar and have realised how much sugar cereal can contain. Even bran flakes. A friend has suggested juicing for breakfast. Would this be a sustainable breakfast? I would be eating a light lunch ( soup or salad) 6 hours later and then a vegetarian meal with more carbs in the evening. Does this sound healthy? I am a teacher and I worry about feeling faint or needing urgent bowel relief through out the day. Any advice would be great 🙂

Answer:

Whilst juicing can be a useful way to get the benefits of fruits and vegetables, it should not be the basis for one of your meals. The primary issue when juicing is that you remove all of the fiber from the fruit and vegetables. Fiber is what gives the feeling of fullness. Fiber is what helps regulates blood sugar. When you juice you remove this. Removing the fiber makes all the sugar in the fruit available immediately, so rather than getting a slow release of energy you get a big hit, just like drinking soda. Plain unfrosted Bran flakes on the other hand, do contain some sugar, but they are very rich in fiber. This means the sugar will not be released into your bloodstream quickly and blood sugar levels will be maintained. Fiber is important to maintain bowel health and regularity. Again on this point you mentioned eating soup for lunch. What type of soup are you consuming clear soup, cream soup or vegetable rich soup. Cream and clear soups don’t contain any fiber so nutritionally they don’t give you any sustained energy. If not already doing so, make sure your soup is rich in vegetables. Juicing is a supplement to your existing diet, it can be useful, but should not be used as a replacement for meals. If you do want to make some kind of liquid meal, I would try and make a fruit/vegetable smoothie. Include some fats a proteins, from live yoghurt and introduce a source of fiber using chia seeds or a small spoonful of oatmeal and blend it together.

Wheatgrass

Hi, I do not eat many vegetables, and I was wondering if I could take 1-2 shots of wheat grass daily to be healthier. Is this a good idea?

Answer:

While wheatgrass does have some nutritional benefits, drinking a wheatgrass shot is not going to make up for a lack of vegetables. Firstly the fiber has been removed during the juicing process so you have lost one beneficial ingredient. Secondly wheatgrass whilst being rich in certain nutrients it does not contain every vitamin and mineral you need. You need to consume a broad range of fruit and vegetables to get all of your requirements that’s why its recommend that your aim for 5 different fruits and vegetables a day. Don’t stop drinking the wheatgrass juice, but consider it one of your 5-a-day.

Juice fast

Is it ok to drink the same kind of juice for 10 days with a juice fast. I am asking about the mean green recipe from fat sick and nearly dead documentary. I am obese and need to jump a hurdle to start getting healthy.

Answer:

I can give you specifics as you didn’t complete your profile, but there is no reason why you cant drink he same juice everyday for 10 days. I have seen the recipe and certainly drinking a can of soda everyday would be a lot worse!