People think Yoga means always standing on your head or doing some pose. But the aim of yoga is to calm the mind. That's why it's called Integral Yoga, because we integrate everything; mind, body, and spirit.     ~Sri Swami Satchidananda

Archive for July, 2012

The Power and Benefits of Juicing

July 12th, 2012by Michelle Muttart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I recently purchased a juicer and love it! A couple weeks ago I watched a documentary on Netflix called Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead.  It is the story of an overweight Australian man using juicing to lose upwards of 150lbs and the health benefits that he encountered along the way.

 

He travelled through the US talking to many people about food.  Along the way he met another man with a similar story to whom he offered his help when he was ready to make a change.  Some six months later this man calls and is in dire health and severely overweight, the Australian man, flies back to the US and gets his new friend started on juicing, continuing to document his progress.

 

What starts out as a 10-day cleanse turns in to 30, then to a full 60 days of consuming nothing but juice!  Of course, doctors for the full length of their 60-day process monitored both men and the results were impressive.  So much so that the American man has also dedicated his life to educating others.

 

I was inspired to start juicing….

 

I wasn’t drawn to juicing for weight loss, but what interested me were the health benefits.  The fact that I could more than double my intake of healthy raw foods and thereby significantly increase my nutrients and vitamin intake intrigued me.

 

While I haven’t committed to do a cleanse at this time, I have been juicing at least once per day for the past 2 weeks, mostly in the morning, and adding vegetables to those juices.  I have found recipes online and try the ones that sound tasty; I have even tried beet juice and loved it!

 

There are many juicers to suit different lifestyles and budgets.  I picked up my juicer at Bed, Bath, and Beyond for $99.  There are options available that range from $20-$500.  Some juicers use a blade and some are juice pressers.  It’s really about what works for you and how much you want to commit to.

 

Some additional reasons to juice…

 

I have a saying, “Being healthy is going to cost you either way, you can pay now or you can pay the doctors later.” Meaning it is up to us to take care of our own health. Juicing one glass is about $2.50, organic will naturally cost more.  I pick up as much locally grown fruits and vegetables as I can, and if you have a garden or fruit bearing trees this is a great way to reduce waste.  You can even use the pulp to add to pies, quiche, make feezer pops, or compost it.

 

Most fruit juices on the market have added sugar or corn syrup, most vegetable juices have added sodium.  A lot of these juices are also frozen concentrates or heated through the pasteurizing process required by the FDA. Basically, you know what you are ingesting and the preparation process.

 

Studies have shown that the absorption rate and amount of nutrients of juiced foods vs. eating them raw is substantially increased. According to Stanford University, “1 cup of carrot or celery juice provides most of the same nutrients found in 5 cups of those same vegetables chopped up.”

 

Other considerations…

 

Juicing in moderation is great, however juice-fasting is not for everyone and should be monitored by a health-care professional especially if there are any health related issues already in play.  For instance, a lot of the fruit juice is high in natural sugar, which needs to be considered for someone diabetic.

 

It’s important not to only drink juice.  We have to drink water.  Hydration is #1.  The standard for water consumption is half your body weight in ounces.  So, if you weigh 140lbs. you would consume 70oz. of water per day.  (I will be writing soon on the benefits of consuming PH balanced water.)

 

Juicing cannot be a replacement to eating fruits and vegetables, which are high in fiber.  It’s important to diversify and continue to eat different sources of nutrients and fiber for balance and optimal nutrition.

 

 

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