Common Juicing Mistakes
There’s an old Biblical proverb: Correct a fool, and he will be angry with you. Correct a wise man, and he will appreciate you.
It’s timeless, and absolutely true.
It’s normal to be proud of your decision to juice. You’ve made a wise choice to live a healthier, more active lifestyle.
Continue being wise, and learn from the experience of others. You just might avoid some common juicing mistakes, like:
You’re too Booring
Humans are creatures of habit. We have a tendency to get the same things when we’re in a hurry, because we know it’s good. Juice is no different.
When you’ve found a recipe that you really like, you’ll repeat it again and again. There’s nothing wrong with that, but too much repetition in your diet can lead to problems with your health. The same produce day in and day out can cause the buildup of toxins in your body.
We live in a modern age because of technology, but our bodies are still primitive. We were meant to be consuming a wide variety of natural fruits and vegetables, in different amounts.
That’s great, because plants have their own natural defense against being eaten.
When you eat a plant, you aren’t just receiving all the good enzymes and nutrients you’re seeking. You’re also digesting trace amounts of toxins. Usually these are no big deal – but in large quantities, they can be dangerous.
Luckily, different fruits and veggies all produce different kinds of toxins, and they generally have short half-lives. By mixing up the kind of juice you make on a daily basis, you can avoid accumulating too many.
That probably has something to do with the next problem, which is
You have a Sweet Tooth
Most of us like the taste of sweet, delicious fruits and vegetables.
Making my own fresh squeezed orange juice is one of my fondest memories of grandma’s house. There’s something extra special about juice you’ve prepared yourself, straight from the fruit.
Unfortunately, there’s a reason for that addictive sweetness – it’s sugar. Duh.
Sugar is complicated. The natural sugar found in your juice, called sucrose, is made from equal parts glucose and fructose. These two sugar elements bond together to form a what’s called a disaccharide molecule. (Saccharide means sugar – di means pair).
The other common sweetener, High-Fructose Corn Syrup, has a higher ratio of fructose to glucose compared to normal sugar. Furthermore, it presents as two separate saccharides that are not molecularly bonded.
This means it’s a monosaccharide. It behaves with subtle differences in the body, that could potentially have big results. Scientists are still learning about the differences between natural sugar and artificial sweeteners, but there is evidence to suggest that HFCS poses a greater risk to health.
To me, it seems obvious and logical that taking in sugar from healthy, all natural sources rich with enzymes, phyto lipids, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals is better than drinking processed corn syrup.
That said, sugar is still sugar. You should be using fruits to sweeten healthier green juices, not exclusively making sweet fruit juice. Sugar spikes affect insulin resistance – and everyone knows how important insulin is to fitness and health.
You hate Cleaning
There’s no point in hiding it. Life gets so hectic sometimes that you occasionally skip out on cleaning. Disassembling the juicer and soaking the parts in hot soapy water gets pushed aside, filed under ‘L’ for Later.
The problem is, many of the vegetables we juice – especially root vegetables like carrots and beets – can stain virtually any surface they contact. If you’re a smart juicer (and you are!) you know that no juicer can skip out on fresh greens. All of this means that to prevent staining you need to wash your juicer on a regular basis.
Fill some hot soapy water and toss in the parts to be washed later. This simple habit will go a long way to keeping your juicer spotless and shiny.
You also might sometimes “forget” to wash the produce before you juice it. That’s a habit you must break immediately. Even organic produce grown without pesticides or chemicals often have fertilizer and soil contamination, invisible to the naked eye. You must always wash EVERYTHING before juicing it, no exceptions.
Washing removes any chemicals or pesticides that may be present on the surface of the juicer. If you’re sticking pieces in whole, remember – what’s on the outside will get mixed with the inside during the extraction process.
Do you know where that apple has been? Wash it.
Sticking in Everything at Once
If you’re a vet, you figured this out the hard way. To the rookies out there, listen: Stop putting hard and soft vegetables into the juicer all at once!
Look, I’m not going to insult your intelligence and explain to you the science behind what makes soft produce ‘soft’ and what makes hard produce ‘hard’. If you’re intelligent enough to make juice a part of your diet, you obviously pay attention to what you eat. There’s no secret trick. A 5 year old can tell soft produce from hard!
If you still aren’t sure which is which, do succulent produce before dryer more pulpy produce. This makes it go faster.
Remember, it’s not a toy! This isn’t a wood chipper. You’re dealing with a machine designed for a very specific task – extracting juice from edible fruits and vegetables. If you did your homework you found yourself a well-engineered piece of juicing goodness. It’s powerful, but it’s not indiscriminate.
It prefers a certain diet – just like you and me.
If you try to extract the tougher, more fibrous produce first, it will clog up the strainer and make juicing the more succulent produce much more difficult. You should resist the urge to just throw things into your juicer willy-nilly.
These are just a few examples of common rookie mistakes, but there are many more. I’m sure as you continue with a juicing lifestyle, you’ll become an expert in no time at all.