Ginger Shots and Beetroot Boak: What I Learnt from Juicing

vegetables for juicing philips

I know that opinions are very divided on the whole “juicing” business, but I wanted to just recap on a few things that I like about it. Things that have changed my diet a little, for the better, and made me think differently about good old garden variety veg.

As you know, I’m not massively into the idea of “diets”. I’m into healthy eating, trying to avoid sugar-laden crap and things that have been nuked to death in the microwave, but I’m not particularly interested in having to follow eating plans that require me to weigh out 25g of quinoa and mix it with special beansprouts and eat it only on a Monday when the moon is full. I do not have the time. I do not have the inclination. For me it’s not about weight – losing this dress size or that amount of pounds – but health: how I look after my body, being able to stoke it up with the right fuels and have enough energy to go about my (often quite hectic!) daily business. I just want some hard and fast health rules to live by that are easy to remember and, above all, make sense. Things like “eat less sugar” and, “go easy on the refined carbs” and “eat more veg”.

The Jason Vale 5 Day Juice Detox doesn’t really fit the bill when it comes to my eating ethos – (I like to chew, I like a bit of meat or fish or cheese once in a while!) – but I gave it a go because a) I liked the idea of kick-starting a little bit of a health re-boot and b), as a writer of a website about beauty and health and all things life-y, it’s great to know at least a bit about all of these diets and detoxes and regimes. If you read my post about the juice diet then you’ll know that I didn’t ever plan on doing the five days: I did two. Plenty, I think, to get a feel for how the different juice recipes taste and experience a little of the sense of hunger (or not) that can come with these plans.

the juice diet tips

And so, a little recap – if you want to read the original post then you can do so here. Read the comments, too, there are some interesting viewpoints from both sides of the juicing fence! Things I’ve learnt/habits I’ve formed:

1) I would never want to “juice” for any significant length of time but I must say that a day or so feels incredibly cleansing. In those times when we bombard our digestive systems with lots of bulky, rich foods and just feel a bit…urgh…the juices feel fresh, nutritious and calming on the tummy. NOTE: so many friends I’ve chatted to about juicing think that it’s orange juice and your typical breakfast juices that you’re consuming. It’s not! Most of them are vegetable based and don’t have any fruit in at all, or just a touch of lime or pineapple. The one above (empty glasses, bright pink leftovers) is beetroot, carrot and a bit of pineapple. Very earthy, but not as boak-inducing as you’d think – in fact, really very pleasant. I’ve found myself actually craving a juice like this on some mornings, when faced with a hotel buffet consisting exclusively of pastries and cereals and toasts. There’s something very satisfying about a morning zinger of a juice – and this is coming from a girl who would previously rather have cut off her own arm than give up the traditional breakfast! Most of the juices in the Jason Vale book (see post here) have an avocado base which makes them quite creamy and filling – a vegetable smoothie, I suppose. (Barf of a concept, but in reality not so bad.)

2) The ginger and apple “power shot” (half an apple, big chunk of ginger) is still up there with my best breakfast discoveries. I have a feeling that it must be great at warding off colds, too – I need to get back into the habit of doing a daily shot!

3) I have definitely started to buy a lot more fresh veg since the juice escapade. I used to only really buy salad veg and things that I could put into curries and other meals. I now think more about trying new veg and I always have some raw beetroots and carrots in the trolley as well as a big bunch of spinach. I used to be put off buying lots of veg because I’d worry about it going off before I could get around to cooking it – now I know that I can just stick it all in the juicer if I need to!

4) I’ve stopped buying Innocent Smoothies so much. I was a bit of an Innocent addict for a while, but now that I can make my own fresh juices with all of the nutrients in tact…well, it just seems silly to have a non-fresh juice sat there in the fridge. I miss the spontaneity of juice from a carton, but really, there’s no comparison.

I’m going to be putting together a video about making juices, demonstrating a couple of the recipes from the Jason Vale book. If you have other suggestions, or anything you’d like me to talk about in the video then please let me know in the comments below. You have no idea how useful your comments are – you’re a brilliant source of information and I love knowing your opinions on subjects like these. So please, fire away!

(I use the Philips Viva HR1863 juicer and the more I nose at other people’s, the more I think that this one is brill. So easy to clean and you can pop whole apples and pears down the spout! Find it here.)

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