For some time there has been much discussion on the benefits of smoothies and what is the best technique/machinery to create them. Some people like to blend protein powder, water and fruit, while others prefer the soothing effect and nutrients that come from greens pressed through a juicer. So what is better? As I always say on this blog – you need to find what is best for you and your body. If you don’t enjoy thick smoothies or protein powder, then maybe a juicer is more your style or both!
Juicing – This method extracts the water and nutrients from fresh fruit and vegetables and leaves the fiber out making the nutrients easier to digest. Drinking just the juice/nutrients of fresh produce means our digestive systems don’t need to work as hard to break down the food, meaning we get a huge HIT of nutrients into our systems without much work! Another bonus is that you can fit more fruits and vegetables into the juicer so you can absorb a much larger quantity of nutrients than if you were to eat them all as whole foods. Juicing is promoted as a fantastic way to get nutrients for those battling autoimmune disease or Cancer. When these patients go through treatment they often lose their appetite or are in much discomfort and should try to boost the immune system. By drinking green juice (see below link on 30 Green juice recipes) you are filling your body with much needed nutrients that come from a large quantity of greens. Be careful not to juice too much fruit at once as this will cause an Insulin spike and your body will not love you for filling it with all the sugar from the fruit. It is best to share each juice with vegetables and no more than 2 fruits to keep the sugar content low. I also recommend a Cold Pressed juicer which retains more nutrients than a standard juicer. Do your research! Cold pressed juicers can be expensive but you are investing in your health. I managed to find a fairly good Cold pressed Juicer at Big W stores for $198 the ‘Vitality BioChef Slow Juicer’. Just remember you get what you pay for but this is a great starting point.
Blender – The blending process creates smoothies which contains the whole fruit and vegetable. Unlike Juicers which extract the water and nutrients from food, blenders include everything. The benefit being that you get the fiber and nutrients in one glass but can still drink it easily. Smoothies tend to be thicker, fill you up more than a juice and you have more variety in what you can put in them, for example protein powder, nuts, seeds, peanut butter, tahini, honey, ice or different types of milk! Try to avoid including starchy vegetables such as carrot, beetroot or broccoli – as they are best eaten alone and avoid adding too much fruit (see below link for smoothie ideas such as Pumpkin Pie Smoothie!) . When looking for a good blender it is wise to invest in an Industrial strength one, unfortunately they are more expensive but it will also expand your world to healthier cooking and recipes. My two favourites are the Ninja Kitchen $500 – $600 or Thermomix $2000 but there are other cost effective options out there. Once again – Do your research!