Whether you're trying to lose weight or just add some much-needed vitamins and minerals to your diet, fresh vegetable juice can be a great help. It's also worthwhile to learn more about the nutritional information behind juicing if you're interested in doing a juice fast.
About Veggie Juice
There are literally hundreds of different juicing recipes for vegetables due to the dozens of different plant varieties and combinations. Likewise, many individuals choose to mix their vegetables with a fruit or two to add a touch of sweetness and further vitamins and minerals.
If you've decided to start juicing your own blends, there are only a few things you need.
- Juicer - There are many fantastic juicers on the market today. They range in cost from relatively inexpensive to about the price of a used car. Choose one that suits your needs.
- Fresh vegetables - Nearly every vegetable can be juiced. Some vegetables do work better than others, however. Trial and error is helpful for determining which veggies you prefer.
- Herbs - Some juice enthusiasts like to add fresh herbs to their juice. Herbs like parsley, cilantro, and basil can add a lot of flavor and health benefits to boot.
- Fruits - Not everyone will choose to include fruit in their fresh juices, but many people prefer the added sweetness. Apples, bananas, pears, and peaches are all excellent additions that add natural sugar and nutrients.
Good Vegetables to Juice
Logically, juicy vegetables work best for juicing. With starchy and tough vegetables, you may have to use a large quantity to get enough juice to drink. Below are a few vegetables that are especially handy for juicing.
Such vegetables are among the easiest to juice and to digest. However, there are a multitude of options, including spinach, kale, beets, collard greens, endive, cabbage, bok choy, and more. It's a smart idea to mix and match "experimental" vegetables with the above reliable choices when you're a newbie to the juicing trend. Sometimes, juiced vegetables can be bitter or difficult to tolerate, so start off simply.
Vegetable Juice Recipes and Nutritional Breakdowns
The following are a few basic vegetable juice recipes. Before juicing, clean and dry all vegetables. Remove any unwanted leaves or dark patches. Most vegetables can be juiced whole. However, if a chosen vegetable is too large, cut it into pieces to ensure easier breakdown.
- Celery/Carrot/Cucumber - This combination is the ultimate in refreshing juice. For a bit of sweetness, add some natural apple juice or juice an entire apple along with the veggies. Apple and carrot tend to match perfectly in almost any juice. Using one whole stalk or vegetable each, this recipe contains approximately 80 calories and more than 840 milligrams of potassium. It also delivers nearly 200 percent of your recommended daily intake of vitamin A.
- Tomato/Fennel/Basil - There's nothing quite like the fresh taste of a juiced tomato, especially when it's paired with basil and fennel. For a special touch, add a little bit of sea salt to the end product. Using one standard serving of each ingredient, this recipe contains approximately 100 calories and over 1200 milligrams of potassium. It also offers approximately 60 percent of your daily recommended intake for vitamin C.
- Carrot/Kale/Cilantro - This bold combination is chock full of important vitamins and minerals. Carrot offers a heavy dose of vitamin A, while kale is full of minerals such as calcium. With one large carrot, two cups of chopped kale, and three tablespoons of cilantro, this juice combination provides approximately 100 calories and more than 800 milligrams of potassium. It also provides about 800 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin A!
- Cucumber/Celery/Bok Choy - This combination of juices is quite cool and refreshing. It's the perfect juice for a warm summer day or a time when you're looking for something light. With very few calories and lots of vitamins, this juice is also a great choice for juice fasts. Using one cucumber, one large stalk of celery, and one cup of chopped bok choy, this refreshing juice offers only about 60 calories and nearly 800 milligrams of potassium. It also offers about 75 percent of your daily recommended intake of vitamin A and about 65 percent of your daily recommended intake of vitamin C.
The amount of calories and nutrients in a cup of vegetable juice vary based on the vegetables you use. However, there are some basic things to know when you decide to begin juicing. One of the wonderful benefits to juicing raw vegetables is that you get many of the vitamins and minerals in their most natural state. Boiling, steaming, and other cooking methods often change the composition of these vitamins and minerals or reduce their quantities. Juicing helps them stay intact and in the best form for you to absorb.
Often, higher-calorie vegetables such as tomatoes and carrots include more vitamins. To reduce your caloric intake, pair these vegetables with lower-calorie vegetables that have a high water content, like celery, cucumbers, and leafy greens.
Juicing for Good Health
Vegetable juicing is a great way to improve your health, lower your weight, and ensure your body is getting all the nutrients it needs to be healthy and strong.