Juicing has enormous health benefits, and if you do it right, you will give your body access to a variety of vitamins and nutrients like it’s never seen before! Not only does juicing support healthy weight loss and muscle growth, but it will introduce a whole host of minerals and antioxidants that will give you an overall health boost.
However, juicing is not as straightforward as you might think. Many people believe that they can just juice anything and drink whatever comes out when it suits them. Yes, juicing can be easy, but there are also rules and tricks you should follow if you want to achieve maximum results from your juicing method. Whether you are new to juicing or have been doing it for a while there is always something new to learn to help you maximize the benefit. Below are the most common mistakes people make when juicing, and remedies to help you get the most out of your juicing regimen.
Juicing mistake 1. Postponing Your Juicing Plan
The first and most common juicing mistake is not juicing at all! Many people commit themselves to make healthier life choices but continually put it off for a number of reasons. They tell themselves they will start ‘tomorrow’ or after the weekend. When they have found the perfect juicer, or located the cheapest grocery store. In reality, the best time to start juicing is right now, today. Because every day that passes is another day that your body goes without beneficial vitamins and nutrients provided by juice consumption. Don’t settle for store-bought juices either, they are packed full of sugars or heated so most of the nutritional benefit is lost. The easiest road to health is to get hold of a juicer and start making it yourself. Not only is it healthier, but will work out a lot cheaper too.
Juicing mistake 2. Not Drinking Your Juice Straight Away
Juicing does take a little time and dedication, but the benefits far outweigh the sacrifice. Instead of waking up a little earlier to make fresh juice, some people make large batches to drink throughout the week. This is not advisable, because the longer you leave juice, the less nutritious it becomes. After around 15 minutes of air and light exposure, juice begins to lose its potency. If you are busy and cannot drink it all straight away then transfer the juice into a darkened container and store in the refrigerator for no longer than 24 hours. Your juice will be considerably less nutrient-dense using this method, but it is still better than no juice at all. So, for maximum benefit Juice as You Go. Don’t wait, or make too much that you cannot drink it all as soon as it is made.
Juicing mistake 3. Using too Many Fruits and Sweet Vegetables
Those who are new to juicing probably pack in all the sweet fruits and veggies they can find to make the juice more palatable or hide the taste of the darker vegetables. Whilst natural sugars are much better for you than the refined sugars found in processed foods, sugar is still sugar and too much of it can have a negative impact on your health. High sugar consumption can lead to problems with your insulin levels which will cause food cravings and possible weight gain, all of the things you are trying to avoid by juicing! The best way to juice is to limit yourself to one sweet fruit or vegetable per drink. This will ensure that your juice tastes good and you are getting all the health benefits.
Juicing mistake 4. Using Juice as a Meal Replacement
Juice is a meal supplement, not a meal replacement. A healthy and balanced diet requires regular meals, with juicing alongside to give your body a nutrient boost. Skipping meals and just having juice instead will not make you reach your weight loss goals any quicker. In fact, it could sabotage your goals entirely. This is because when you begin to starve, enzymes in the body start to attack your muscle cells to provide your body with energy. The enzymes only begin to take energy from fat deposits after a prolonged period without food at all. Therefore, replacing meals with juice can risk nutrient deficiency and a weakened muscle structure. And avoiding solids will deny your body essential benefits that come from foods that cannot be juiced. Therefore, juicing alongside a healthy diet is a sure-fire way to reach your weight-loss goals and achieve optimum health.
Juicing mistake 5. Using the Same Juicing Ingredients Everyday
Variety is king when it comes to juicing. Using the same ingredients every time not only gives a sense of monotony, but can lead to high concentrations of some nutrients, and deficiencies of others. To continue to hold onto the habit of juicing be sure to include a variety of fruits and vegetables in your juicing plan. Having a different variety of ingredients each day will provide an array of different flavors and textures, which will make the juicing process more enjoyable. It can also make you more creative as you experiment with different combinations of vegetables and fruits. Alternating your produce will help your body’s vitality by providing the spectrum of vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and antioxidants that your body needs.
Juicing mistake 6. Drinking Juice on a Full Stomach
To get the maximum benefit from juicing it is best to consume your juice on an empty stomach. This is because the body will be hungry for nourishment and will absorb the nutrients far more efficiently when the stomach is empty, rather than when it is full. Your stomach will also use a smaller amount of digestive energy, and nothing in the juice will be wasted. Then, it is best to drink your juice at least 30 minutes before having a solid meal, and in the morning if possible. If you drink your juice after a meal, the fiber from it will prevent your body from absorbing all those wonderful nutrients and you could risk getting indigestion or heartburn in the process. Whereas if you consume juice in the morning before your meal, it will strengthen your immunities, preventing allergens and ailments from entering your system. It will also support your stomach and aid digestion throughout the day.
Juicing mistake 7. Not ‘’Chewing’’ Your Juice
What is meant by ‘chewing’ juice? People are often not fond of the taste of certain juices (especially those vegetable-only juices like Green Juice) so they tend to chug their juice down quickly in one go. This is not beneficial, because bypassing time spent in the mouth means that the nutrients in the juice are not ‘unlocked’ and made ready for the stomach to absorb. When we chew solids, powerful enzymes found in saliva begin to break down the food, making it easier for the stomach to extract the nutrients inside. So, if you think about it, digestion starts in the mouth, not the stomach. To get full access to the nutrients in your juice, be sure to swill the juice around your mouth a few times before swallowing. This will give the mouth enzymes enough time to break down the nutrients, and your stomach will thank you for it!
Even if you feel unprepared when going into your new juice routine, avoiding these 7 common mistakes will help you get the most out of your juicing plan and support your health and weight loss goals.
Michael Dehoyos is a Diet and Nutrition Expert and editor for health and lifestyle magazines at Academic Brits. He assists health and wellbeing companies in their marketing strategy concepts, and contributes his knowledge and expertise to numerous sites and publications.