February 21, 2013
Valerie, Kitchenware Specialist
Hello everyone, I hope you had a wonderful holiday season! Now into the new year, people have been asking me about the difference between juicing and blending, so I put this together. I hope it helps.
Juicing vs Blending (smoothie)
A juicer extracts the juice from the items you put in it, rejecting the rind, or pulp (basically the fibrous part of the fruit or vegetable) making the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants readily available to the body. A blender blends and emulsifies the ingredients, rejecting nothing but simply mashing it all up creating a thick, voluminous beverage. Both are largely beneficial and equally good to have for different reasons. Just remember, there is still nothing like eating the whole fruit or vegetable. Though it is true that too much fiber can sometimes block the absorption of nutrients, most people don’t even get the recommended amount of fiber per day as it is for that to be a concern.
Depending on what is being blended, the option is there to make a nutrient dense drink chock full of nourishing vitamins and minerals. I like to use Greek nonfat yogurt, fruits and green veggies (like kale or spinach). Change it up so you don’t get bored and you will give your body different vitamins and mineral this way. When you make a blended drink it keeps all the parts, just blends them up so it is more filling and can be used as a meal replacement. When I do this I like to add protein powder.
Juicing will allow immediate nutrient absorption into your body and there is no digestion needed to break down the fibers. You get the ability to consume a great deal of vitamins, minerals in one glass. Would you sit down and eat 5 carrots, an entire stalk of kale, a whole apple, 5 stalks of celery, half a bunch of parsley, and an entire cucumber all at once? Most likely not, but when juicing you can easily accomplish this. You still want to aim to eat two whole fruits, and three to four vegetables a day. Try for different colors, as the colors have different vitamins and minerals. “Don’t think because you’re juicing that you’re off the hook with eating fruits and vegetables,” says Manuel Villacorta, MS, RD, CSSD, an Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics spokesman and founder of Eating Free, a weight management program.
Things to be aware of when juicing.
* Make sure to wash all fruits & veggies well. You are eating these raw so make sure they are clean.
*Juices need to be consumed right away for the maximum benefit. If you have some leftover, and simply wanted to make a larger batch, store in an air tight, dark container so the juice will not have any exposure to air or light, and refrigerate immediately. Use your extra juice within 24 hours. Light and air destroys much of the antioxidants and enzymes which is the reason juicing is so beneficial to us.
*The sweetest fruits and veggies to juice are carrots, apples, & beets. Add some to your veggies to sweeten & make it more palatable if you don’t like green juices and other veggies alone.
*Juices are not to be mistaken for a meal. These are not meal replacements so eat a healthy meal with your juice. Unless you are going on a proper juice fast and check with your doctor before starting your fast.
*If you use mostly sweeter veggies and fruits (ie carrot, apple, beets) or any other item that is higher in sugar, keep in mind this will elevate blood sugar levels and prepare accordingly (like eating something with it).
Blending and juicing is an easy way to increase the amount of vegetables, especially those greens, into your diet without having to make a meal of it or tasting it either (for those who do not enjoy them so much). Either one you choose just think of the added vitamins and mineral you can get into your body. You will boost your immune system. You can reduce acidity and toxicity in your body. You will just fill better.
In the kitchenware department at Harmons we have a nice selection of blenders Cuisinart and Black & Decker. We do carry a great juicer by Cuisinart that does a great job with the hard veggie and the greens, some machines do not so be careful. I do recommend the Cuisinart because they are well made and they come with a 3 year warranty. So stop by and check out the department and please ask questions because we are happy to help!