“If life gives you lemons, make some kind of fruity juice.” – Conan O’Brien
The saying goes: “An apple a day, keeps the doctor way.” Healthful apples contain many antioxidants and a number of phytochemicals that reduce inflammation. And there’s nothing more refreshing than biting into a nice juicy apple right after a workout. As healthy and scrumptious as apples are, unfortunately, for me: “An apple a day, keeps the dentist on speed dial!”
Recently when chomping on a fresh apple, I quite literally bit off more than I could chew. In the midst of chewing, I realized that I’d lost my crown. I got my tooth repaired (yay), but still worry when taking a bite, munch, and crunch of raw fruits or vegetables.
Like many health-seekers, I know the importance of eating my fruits and veggies, yet still struggle getting my “5 a day.” Did you know that despite the “5 a day” recommendations from the Surgeon General, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the National Cancer Institute, only about 10% of Americans follow this advice?
After my tooth incident I wondered how I could continue to be one of the “10%” when eating raw fruits and vegetables was no longer my best option.
A vision popped in my head: Have you seen those infomercials with muscle-shirt clad, fast-talking, and toothy-grinning “health” gurus hawking their juicers and making miraculous claims from living a juicing lifestyle.
Juicing aficionados report improved energy and performance from drinking juice concoctions.
So after years of resisting “jumping on the juicing bandwagon,” I decided to give juicing a go -- as a way to get much needed minerals and vitamins (and save my crowns) -- but not before doing lots of research. Here are a couple things I’ve discovered from research and personal experience:
Juicing may be easier on the teeth, but not necessarily on the pocket book. The initial investment of a juicer can take quite a chunk out of your budget – some “miracle machines” can set you back several grand. However, I did find a sturdy, well-reviewed juicer for a reasonable price and so far, so good! Also, purchasing abundant amounts (which is what’s needed) of the fresh, organic, and abundant produce can take a bite out of your budget. On the other hand, you may also find yourself eating fruits and veggies like over-ripe bananas and wilted celery that still contain nutritional value, but that you’d normally throw out.
Too much of a good thing can be bad. Most nutritionists advise that juice should supplement meals, not replace them and caution against long-term juice fasts. Juiced fruits and veggies alone do not provide any protein or fiber – all needed for a healthful diet. And while most agree that a glass of juice is more nutritious than a candy bar, don’t assume that a glass of juice is super low in calories or sugar.
Since juicing, I’ve tried foods I’ve never eaten before – which can be good and bad. Be careful if you are introducing new items to your diet. I introduced beets – and have discovered after suffering a burning throat, I’m allergic to beets. Conversely, I’ve found I like kale (and luckily, it likes me). My favorite blend is 1 orange, 3 large carrots, and a small chunk of fresh ginger. Yummy!
How about you, realbuzz friends? What are your experiences with juicing? Do you have any recipes to share?
Until next time . . . a “sipping” Mare
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