There is a growing trend toward including more raw food and juice into daily diet.
Juicing helps you squeeze the vital nutrients and live enzymes from fruits and vegetables. It helps you include high antioxidant leafy greens, wheat grass and nuts into a diet that is often deplete of any nutrients. The pulp which is mostly fiber is separated and you get a naturally occurring high concentration of vitamins and minerals. You feel lighter and energized. It is only fair to caution you that some of that energy comes from sugar if you include too much fruits. When you remove the fiber, this sugar gets into your blood stream fast. This is not healthy for you. Juicing is most beneficial if you focus on vegetables first and use fruits for flavoring.
Buying a juicers should match your health objective. A cheap juicer often extracts juice from apples and carrots and other hard fruits and vegetables but try to juice leafy greens and they won’t cut it. Your main challenge in juicing is to find recipes that focus on health without going overboard on high sugar fruits. And recipes you enjoy. One good way is to visit health stores and try what they have. If you want to continue juicing, find recipes you like fast. Finding recipes and matching them to your needs is actually the step you need to take before buying a juicer.
After that comes juicer selection.
Juicing machines come in two basic style. Hand operated and hands free.
Before you jump to a conclusion, remember that many commercial operations are still using hand operated juice extractors for two reasons. The are simple, they are sturdy and they are fast. The original citrus juicers were also hand operated.
Automatic juicers operate ways, grinding against a sharp blade at high speeds or squeezing the produce at lower speed. The high speed grinding happens in centrifugal juicers. These juicers are fast and their parts are often machine washable. However, they are mostly for hard fruits and vegetables. Try to juice some leafy greens or wheat grass and you only get a green mashed wet pulp. Also the speed of these juicers create heat and foam. Both of these destroy nutrients fast.
The squeezing juice machines run your produce between two gears with teeth. These are triturating juicers. Or they run your fruits, vegetables and nuts between two augers or an an auger and the housing. These machines are slower and preserve most of your nutrients.
Juicing machine construction could be a concern. Parts of these machines are made of hard plastic which could contain BPA which could mess up your hormones. More expensive machines are made of BPA free material or stainless steel.
Another feature that separates juicers is versatility. A citrus juicer is great for lemons, grapefruits and oranges but not wheatgrass. A wheat grass juicers is not so effective in juicing oranges. A centrifugal juicer works well with apples and carrot but not so well with leafy greens. A horizontal masticating juicer is great for everything except making nut milk. These varieties of functions and uses is why I recommended you to begin with finding your juice recipes first and figuring out what you’ll be using the juicer for and then buying the juicer that fits your objectives.
Let’s go over the three most popular power operated juicers.
Centrifugal Juicers – These are usually the least expensive. They spin the produce at high speed against a blade and a mesh baskets separates the juice from the pulp. High RPM grinds the produce to tiny pieces. The pulp is gathered inside the unit which could clog fast and requires you to empty it in the middle. Or it is expelled through a chute.
Centrifugal juicers pros are these.
- They are fairly inexpensive with a price end as low as $40.
- They work well with hard fruits and vegetables
The cons are:
- They don’t do well with leafy greens or sprouts
- Their high RPM creates foam which oxidizes your juice fast.
- Some designs clog fast and slow down your juicing.
- Some designs are hard to clean.
Masticating Juicers – These juicers squeeze the fruits between an augur and he housing, similar to what you do when you chew food. The pulp is then pressed against a strainer and juice is extracted. The pulp is then ejected .
Pros of Masticating juicers:
- Higher yield
- Low speed which means less form and less oxidation.
- Versatility that allows you to juice a variety of fruits and vegetables. Some even could make sorbets, mince salsa, make nut butters and nut juice and baby food.
- Most work well with leafy greens and sprouts.
- Higher price range that begins around $300.
- More prep time
- Harder to clean.
Triturating Juicers – Triturating juicers brings you the most versatility. The twin gears with teeth cuts and squeezes anything including wheatgrass. They are also the most efficient and produce the most juice per pound of produce.
Pros of triturating juicers
- Versatility – They give you most flexibility in juicing and making raw food recipes.
- They create the highest yield.
- At the higher price range.
- More parts that could add to cleaning time.