Juicing 101

Fresh juices offer a myriad of health benefits. Learn the step-by-step of juicing from a pro!

Tired of taking vitamins? Juicing has always been considered a more pleasant way to enjoy those much-needed nutrients. However, many see juicing as a rather tedious thing to do. To demistify juicing, Urban Health speaks to Ling Mooi Li, the owner of Malaysia’s home-grown juice bar, Juice Works. Ling is also a pharmacist by profession. She explains how juicing is great for our health and also shares tips on how to make fresh fruit juices at home.

The Benefits

Juicing has many benefits, which can be enjoyed by the young and old alike. One of the biggest of these is that you get your daily intake of nutrients. According to Ling, “Juicing is an easy way to get your eight portions of fruits and vegetables in a day.”  She goes on to explain that in Malaysia, we generally don’t consume enough of raw fruits and vegetables as part of our meals.

Think of a plate Nasi Lemak or Char Kuey Teow and  you’ll  have an idea of the amount of fruits and vegetables that we eat at most meals.  Ling stresses that an adult should be consuming about two to three portions of fruits and vegetables per meal. “One portion of fruits or vegetables is equivalent to a full cup. Also, out of the 8 portions you should obtain daily, aim for five portions of vegetables and 3 portions of fruits,” she says.

So, how can you get your daily dose of fruits and vegetables with juices? “When you juice your fruits and vegetables, you are unlocking the nutrients from the fibre component , which allows your digestive system to absorb the nutrients better and faster,” explains Ling. However, because the juicing process tends to get rid of the fibres, Ling recommends that you add smoothies to your diet, in order to get that much-needed dose of fibre.

The Process

So, how many types of fruits and vegetables should you include in a juice? Or can you go ahead and juice just about anything? Here’s a great tip from Ling, “Try and mix as many different types of fruits and vegetables as you can, to enjoy a variety of nutritional benefits. You can also mix both fruits and vegetables in a cup of juice.”

Also, while juicing is a fun way to be adventurous with your fruit and vegetable choices, you should keep in mind that it’s important to juice those that you personally enjoy. After all, you wouldn’t want to waste a whole cup of nutritious juice just because you don’t like the way it tastes

But doesn’t juicing take a lot of time? If you’re always in a hurry, Ling suggests investing in a whole fruit juicer, “This means that you won’t have to chop the fruit up into tiny pieces.” In fact, whole-fruit juicers also allow you to juice the skin or rind of the fruit, which contain wholesome nutrients as well. “Of course, if you’re afraid that the rinds contain chemicals, such as pesticides, be sure to soak your fruit or vegetables in salt or a cleaning solution before juicing them,” advises Ling. To make things more convenient, ensure that your fridge is well stocked with you favourite fruits and vegetables. This way, you’ll be able to whip up a cup of juice for everyone at home, at any time of the day.

In the end, there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to juicing. All it takes is a little time and effort as well as your imagination and you’re well on your way to getting all the nutrients you need every day.

 

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