Lately I’ve been really excited about juicing. Back in the day my ex-boyfriend, who will be referred to on this blog as “The Jackass”, got me a Jack LaLane juicer. Now…this is one of the ONLY good things he ever did in our relationship despite the fact that it was a Valentine’s Day gift. I know right? How romantic. Honestly, what I really think it was, was that he forgot to buy me a Valentine’s gift, spent all his money buying the juicer off the television for HIMSELF, and when it conveniently showed up on our doorstep a few days before the 14th, he just called it my present because he didn’t want to get in trouble. I know this because before then I had never expressed any interest in having a juicer and from the way he cleaned and polished that thing like it was his baby…I knew it was meant to be for him. So you can imagine that when he left me how adamant I was about keeping it. “No, no, Jackass, this was MY gift from YOU. This is MY juicer remember??” Sure, sure, I kept it out of spite. But now it is one of my favorite tools to use in the kitchen and my current wonderful, kind, generous, and non-jackass of a boyfriend who will be referred to as “Mr. Right” on this blog, loves to use it as well.
A month or so ago my sister and I watched a documentary called “Hungry for Change” all about clean eating and how to take care of your body. Personally, I cannot follow the regimens put out by the fitness gurus in that documentary. I just can’t. I’m low income, I like to eat out sometimes, and I have friends and other responsibilities that keep me from being in the gym and the kitchen 24/7. It’s just not realistic to me. BUT that being said, I really enjoyed the documentary and it really inspired me to check the labels of everything I buy as well it inspired me to juice. According to this documentary and many others, juicing is one of the best ways to get good nutrition in your system. I’m not one of those big time, juicing fitness gurus that are all over Instagram, and I’m not sure if I ever intend to be, but every other day I try to make myself some juice. Juicing with a juicer is not the same thing as drinking juice. Fruit juices in the store are often not really juice at all, rather sugar and chemical water. Even the juices that advertise being whole fruit juice have additives and sugar. The only brand that I trust in the stores is “Naked”. This brand makes juice that is the closest thing you are going to get to juicing it yourself at home. The bad part is, you’re going to pay a hefty price for a small bottle of juice whereas buying the produce yourself and running them through the machine costs way less.
Using a juicer is really easy once you learn how to put it together. It’s also really dangerous if you don’t know what you’re doing. Ok…I’m not entirely sure if it’s the same for every juicer since I only have one, but the Jack LaLane juicer can really provide some serious threats to your person as it includes a very sharp spinning blade that you have to remove yourself. Your juicer should be cleaned after every use as it collects fruit and vegetable pulp, which if left unattended can ferment and smell bad. Some people may find this to be a pain. Personally I don’t. All of the parts of my juicer are dishwasher safe as I think is pretty standard with most juicers on the market. You just take it a part, put the pieces in your dish washer, and run it through for the next day’s use. My juicer in particular was pretty expensive. Because The Jackass ordered it off the television it was probably $100 more expensive than they sell them for in the stores. In stores today the one that I have will probably run you around $90-100. I didn’t buy mine so I didn’t really have to think much about this. However I know for some of you this might be a concern. Of course the more you pay for a juicer the better quality it will be, but I know for a fact they sell some at Walmart for around $20 that work just fine. Amazon.com also has some pretty sweet deals.
One of my favorite things about juicing is that you can make plenty of cool flavor combos. And I know that sometimes eating fruits and vegetables can be hard for some people as the texture isn’t always pleasant. But the truth of the matter is, fruits and vegetables carry very important nutrients for our bodies that we NEED. You really can’t avoid it. Juicing these foods provides one of the purest ways to get these nutrients. I wanted to share with you some of my juices that I create and maybe inspire you the way that documentary did for me. The first juice I wanted to show you guys was Cucumber/Pear. Now…let me just start out by saying: If you do not like the taste of vegetables then you probably will not want to start off with this juice. You really have to develop a taste for fresh juice before you start tossing in tons of green things. I personally like cucumber a lot. What I’ve learned is: a little goes a long way. I juiced an entire HALF of a cucumber in this juice. That was way too much. It overpowered the flavor of the pear which is supposed to make it sweet and it just…tasted like grass. So be mindful of overpowering flavors when you juice. There are TONS of other blogs specifically dedicated to juicing that give you recipes with exact measurements so you don’t goof this up like I did. I also used really under-ripe pears so they weren’t as sweet as they could have been. I was terribly impatient. But there are tons of health benefits that come with this juice. Cucumbers have been known for ages to reduce inflammation (that’s why they put cucumbers on your eyes when you go to the spa! Ah ha! Facts! ;) ) and also to reduce the risk of some types of cancers. Pears also help reduce inflammation which is why they go so well with cucumbers in this juice. They also are a very good source of dietary fiber and so they can reduce the chance of getting Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. If you are ever wondering what kinds of benefits our fruits and vegetables give us, check out this website: http://www.whfoods.com/
When I first started juicing I often looked up the benefits of the ingredients I was using just because I was curious. It is a really great resource.
I know maybe from the picture you are thinking, “I am NOT drinking that.” I know…it looks like green algae. But I promise that it isn’t bad. Also, I bet you are wondering why there is a picture of my snow crab salad and a BBQ beef sandwich in the picture as well. There is a really simple explanation for that. Katie was dumb and deleted the picture of the juice by itself off her computer…and the only picture she had of the juice was the one that she edited together with the other meals she had made that same day…so. I guess you’re just going to have to enjoy this picture of the snow crab salad again……..and this BBQ beef sandwich…yep.
I tried another combination with cucumber: Cucumber/Melon. Remember that super delicious smelling hand cream that you used to get from Bath and Body Works? Yep. It tastes just as good too……the juice…not the hand cream…..awkward.
Anyway! I hope you guys try out juicing and give me a holler if you do!
Eat, Pray, Love,