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Juicing pros and cons

juicing pros and cons
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Juicing has become extremely popular over the past few years, and with companies reporting an increase in sales of juicers – Lakeland has seen a 4,000% rise since 2013 – the trend shows little sign of slowing down.

But is juicing a great way to get nutrients without gaining weight or is it just a fad that has perhaps gone a bit too far? We weigh up the pros and cons so that you can make your own mind up.

PROS

Easy way to get nutrients

If you’re not much of a fruit or veg eater, then juices can be an easy way to get vital nutrients into your body. They are free of nasty stuff, such as salt, trans fats and added sugar that is usually found in processed foods, making them a great accompaniment to the rest of your diet. You might also find you are happy to drink juices made out of fruit or veg that you wouldn’t normally eat, meaning you get more variety in your five-a-day.

Digestion

Juicing your food before eating it helps your digestive system work quickly and efficiently. This saves energy and allows your system to absorb nutrients immediately. It takes up to 18 hours for food to go through the digestive system and start providing nourishment so the odd glass of juiced fruit and veg can give your body a bit of a rest.

CONS

Removes goodness

juicing pros and consYou know that pulp that’s leftover when you’ve juiced something? Well, that’s where most of the fibre is so by juicing, you’re removing some of the goodness. Juicing fruit and vegetables can remove some of the natural fibres, meaning you won’t gain all the health benefits possible. Downing a glass of green juice won’t have the same effect as eating your veggies steamed as some of the key nutrients will disappear during the juicing process.

Sugars

Most fruit juices contain high levels of fructose – meaning they are laden with sugars. While these sugars may be natural, they can still do damage to the teeth, increase the number of carbs and calories that are present and can affect blood sugar levels. Eating fruit rather than juicing it can cut down the levels of sugar as none of the roughage is removed. In fact, the effect of juicing can actually lead to the body storing more fat as the liver struggles to cope with the influx of fructose and turns it into fat.

Protein

Relying too heavily on juiced fruit and veggies can lead to a lack of protein in your diet. Our bodies need protein to keep our metabolisms working. Opting for juice over protein-rich foods will eventually lead to your body burning muscle rather than fat as your metabolism doesn’t work properly. Protein also helps us feel full for longer, so if you’re lacking in it, you’ll be inclined to reach for a snack before long.

Juicing can be a great way to get some extra fruit and veggies into your system, but it shouldn’t be relied upon to provide healthy diet. Make sure you get all the nutrients you need – particularly protein, fats and fibre – from other food sources and make a point of consuming fruit and veg as solids as well as juices to ensure you’re getting the maximum goodness from them. As part of a healthy balanced diet, juices definitely have their place but a juice-only ‘detox’ will leave you feeling worse than before you started.

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About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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