This article was originally published in its entirety in the December 2013 issue of Murfreesboro Magazine. (Article by RACHEL HOLDER, Photography by JUSTIN HOLDER)
Whether it’s on television, in a health book, or at your local gym, chances are you’ve probably heard the buzz about juicing lately, and for good reason. Although widely popular in the 1980’s, juicing has made a resurgence, due not only to cleansing and weight loss benefits, but also for disease prevention. In many cases, juicing has been said to even cure debilitating diseases like cancer and long term depression. Since my own family has become heavily involved with juicing, I turned to some of Murfreesboro’s resident experts and local juice bar owners for the very latest information, advice and how-to’s on everything juicing.
“Juicing is a process which extracts water and nutrients from produce and discards the indigestible fiber,” explains Kira Whitaker, owner of Arden Yoga and Wellness in Murfreesboro. “Without all the fiber, your digestive system doesn’t have to work as hard to break down the food and can absorb the nutrients much more quickly and easily.”
Ken Mathis, owner of Your Burger in Murfreesboro which houses a full service fresh juice bar, agrees saying, “Juicing bathes the organs in micronutrients – things like Vitamins A, B, C, magnesium, and sulfur – that the body needs, but are most often cooked out of food.” Mathis also says that juicing helps to balance the pH levels in the body, neutralizing the acidity that causes disease to thrive.
In addition to it’s many health and disease fighting benefits, many people clearly turn to juicing for weight loss as well. Corey Williams, owner of Pa Bunk’s Natural Market and Cafe which also houses a full service juice bar, says, “A lot of our clients will replace a meal with juicing. It’s very low calorie, very good for you, and fills you up.”
“For those just starting out,” Williams explains, “I’d recommend finding your local juice bar, then come in and try a few different combinations for a week or so to find out what you like, or even borrow a juicer from a friend. Just make sure you start out slowly to stick with it.”
When you’re ready to buy a juicer, a great place to start is the Breville Juice Fountain Plus. This juicer was featured in the juicing documentary “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead,” and holds true to the hype – an excellent juicer for an affordable price of around $150. For a higher end home juicer, the Breville Juice Fountain Elite and the Omega Vertical Masticating Juicer are excellent choices in the $350-$400 category.
For the first time juicer, there are a few ground rules to remember:
It’s always a good idea to follow the 80/20 rule – juice 80% vegetables to 20% fruits. Remember, when you remove the fiber from the produce, the liquid juice is absorbed into your blood stream quickly. If you are only juicing fruits, this would cause a rapid spike in blood sugar and unstable blood sugar levels can lead to mood swings, energy loss, and memory problems.
Fresh juices are best, as the enzymes in fresh juice are very sensitive to light and heat, causing them to breakdown very quickly. But if you must make ahead, remember a general rule: juices made with a centrifugal juicer last no more than 8 hours and those made with a masticating juicer last no more than 24 hours. If juices must be stored, they should be kept in air tight stainless steel or BPA free containers.
Always clean your juicer immediately after using it. Bacteria can begin to grow from the leftover produce particles within minutes.
Beet, Apple and Blackberry Juice
3 small beets
8 oz. blackberries
1/2 inch fresh ginger
(Recipe courtesy of: Kira Whitaker, Owner, Arden Yoga and Wellness located in Georgetown Park, West Northfield Blvd.
Offers nutrition and juicing workshops in addition to yoga and wellness classes)
2 Celery stalks
(Recipe courtesy of: Kim Hillsman, Owner, Sunshine Nutrition Center, South Church St., Full service juice bar with made to order and pre-made juices of the day)
3-4 large stalks Kale
1-2 handfuls Spinach
(Recipe courtesy of: Ken Mathis, Owner, Your Burger, North Thompson Ln., Full service juice bar offering centrifugal and cold press processes)
1/2-1 Orange, peeled
Ginger (thumb sized piece)
1 tsp cayenne pepper
(Recipe courtesy of: Corey Williams, Pa Bunk’s Natural Market and Cafe, Historic Downtown Square, Full service juice bar with both centrifugal and masticating juicers)