Curious about juicing? It’s no secret these days that a well-balanced diet should contain a good range of fruits and vegetables. Think about all those vitamins and minerals, how they can benefit your health and give you bundles of energy at the same time. In fact, there are some quite interesting and compelling studies that highlight the benefits of high fruit and vegetable consumption. In a study conducted by the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, the findings indicated that participants “…eating at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily had a 28% lower risk of cardiovascular disease than participants eating fewer than 1.5 servings per day, probably due to higher intake of multiple nutrients, including folic acid, potassium, and possibly glucosinolates, diallyl sulfides, and flavonoids.”1
Some people can still find it difficult to get at least five whole servings of fruit and vegetables in their diets each day without eating large portions that leave them full and put off fruit and vegetables… Enter juicing!
What is Juicing?
Simply put, juicing is a method of extracting all the health-promoting vitamins and minerals from raw fruits and vegetables; squeezing them all into a damn tasty, health packed drink!
The process is performed using a Juicer machine and strips out the bulk of the fruit and vegetables, leaving you with a nutrient packed drink that will boost your energy levels and provide you with vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds equal to what you would get if you consumed three or four servings of fruits/vegetables. Clever right!?
How Is Juicing Different From Blending?
This is a common question asked by those new to juicing, and there are a lot of people out there who think they are juicing when in reality they aren’t.
The difference here is that when you juice fruits and vegetables you are literally just extracting the juices within the fruit. You leave behind the pulp and insoluble fiber of the fruits, which gives you a highly concentrated drink, full of vitamins and minerals. When you blend fruits and vegetables, all the pulp and fiber is left intact, and while fiber is great, it makes your final drink thicker and more filling, which can result in you not being able to finish the drink, therefore not ingesting all of those healthy compounds.
Why Should You Juice?
With the growing popularity and hype surrounding juicing, chances are you have probably had a friend or family member recommend you jump on the “juicers” wagon and grab yourself a crate of fruit. But when asked why you should juice, I’m sure the majority you got some kind of response like “It’s really healthy” or “It’s good for weight loss.” You’ve also probably heard some damming claims against juicing such as “it will rot your teeth”. So the question still remains, “Should I juice? And why?”
Firstly, YES, if you have the resources to juice you absolutely should in my opinion. Secondly, as for why, there are a number of reasons why you should juice, not just for the blanket statement that “it is healthy”. Let’s take a look at some of those reasons…
Firstly, juicing is super easy. Sometimes there are fruits or vegetables that you simply don’t know how to prepare or cook, so you avoid them altogether. Fortunately, with juicing it becomes easy to consume all those fruits and veggies you have been missing out on, and the only real preparation you may need to do is peeling and chopping. It also allows you to combine fruits and vegetables together that you wouldn’t typically eat together, like apples and cucumbers or carrots and kale, opening up a whole new world of veggie and fruit delights!
Secondly, but probably the most important reason as to why you should juice, are the health benefits.
There are lots of health benefits that juicing has to offer, for example, as I have already mentioned, juicing can reduce a person’s risk of cardiovascular disease by as much as 28% – quite astounding when you think about it.
Let’s take a look at some of the other health benefits.
Nutrient Absorption and Digestion
Juicing your fruits and vegetables can take a load off the digestive system and make it extra easy to absorb all the nutrients you need.
These days, many people suffer from various digestive disorders or slow digestion and it can be a challenge to absorb vitamins and minerals from the foods we consume. In fact, an estimated 60-70 million US citizens are affected by some kind of GI disease yearly. Whether it be caused by aging, medications or dehydration, it is obviously clear that our digestive systems are sensitive and something that should be looked after.
By removing all the pulp and body of the fruits and veggies, you are able to consume a larger quantity than you could typically eat, meaning a larger quantity of essential vitamins. You also make it a doddle for your body to absorb these essential nutrients into your bloodstream as there is hardly any digestion needed whatsoever. What’s even better is that along with getting a huge dosage of vitamins and minerals, you will also get a large dose of digestive enzymes locked away in fruits and veggies.
There are about 22 digestive enzymes essential for healthy digestion, and all are present in various fresh fruits and vegetables. Once cooked however, the majority of the enzymes are destroyed, and you are reliant on your body to manufacture said enzymes. Over time, if you are solely reliant on your body to manufacture these digestive enzymes, stress accumulates within the body and your immune system and digestion can be affected, thus leading to more risk of illness and protection from disease.
According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Heart Disease is the number one killer in the United States, accountable for a staggering 610,000 deaths each year. That is equivalent to a scary one in four deaths.2
It’s seems that our number one priority these days should be to look after the old ticker, and luckily juicing can help by lowering blood pressure, fending off free radicals and lowering cholesterol.
Vegetables such as beetroot, lettuce and cabbage contain a large quantity of the compound inorganic nitrate. When consumed, the body converts inorganic nitrate in to nitric oxide that helps your blood vessels relax and dilate, encouraging a nice flow of blood around the body and lowering blood pressure. It also helps maintain the elasticity in your blood vessels, allowing them to contract and dilate without any problems. An interesting study conducted by the Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) in the UK, concluded that “These findings suggest a role for dietary nitrate as an affordable, readily-available, adjunctive treatment in the management of patients with hypertension,”3 and that the results were achievable by consuming just one cup of beetroot juice each day.
Also, fruits such as blueberries and cranberries contain high amounts of anti-oxidants that are essential in order to deal with those nasty free radicals in the body that can cause damage to your artery walls by clotting and lowering triglyceride levels. Free radicals usually travel around the body, causing cellular damage and creating new free radicals, however; anti-oxidants will donate one of their electrons without becoming unstable themselves, therefore eradicating the damaging free radicals.
Potassium rich vegetables such as spinach and carrots are also a great thing to get in the juicer as the potassium is essential for heart function; preventing artery thickening oxidative damage. It has been noted over the years that the modern day diet has become rich in sodium and lacking in potassium—a recipe made for hypertensive disaster. Juicing potassium rich produce can help balance this out. Be careful however, as too much potassium can be just as bad for you as too little. It is recommended that you should get roughly 4,500 mg each day.
Healthy Hair, Nails and Skin
If the reasons mentioned so far aren’t enough to convince you that juicing is anything but beneficial, perhaps that it can improve your complexion and strengthen your hair and nails will add even more credence to the benefits of juicing.
As mentioned earlier, anti-oxidants are important in order to get rid of free radicals; and those pesky little radicals can be responsible for some of our unwanted aging characteristics. UV exposure, for example, can cause free radical formation in the skin, and without dealing with them they can cause us skin damage that can present itself in forms such as unwanted wrinkles. Just think of that heavily tanned woman on the beach, riddled with wrinkles all over her face and body—we’ve all seen her.
One group of antioxidants in particular that can produce substantial benefits, are carotenoids. “People consuming diets rich in carotenoids from natural foods, such as fruits and vegetables, are healthier and have lower mortality from a number of chronic illnesses.”4
Carotenoids are responsible for the red color you find in some fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, carrots and plums. They are organic pigments that absorb light from the sun for the purpose of photosynthesis. However; when ingested by humans, carotenoids are stored within the fat under the skin, and over time they form a serum and secrete themselves into the skin, giving it a nice golden appearance. Some carotenoids also help to protect your eyes, absorbing eye-damaging near-ultraviolet light.
The formation of Keratin is essential for strong, smooth hair and nails. Keratin is a protein that plays a key role in the structural strength of your hair and nails. A deficiency in this protein can cause you to have weakened nails and hair that is prone to breaking and even falling out. The building blocks of keratin are vegetable proteins, so making sure you eat consume your vegetables is important. Also, vitamin C can play a key role in the development of keratin, so fruits such as grapefruit, pineapple and other citruses are beneficial for keeping your hair strong and skin glowing.
Your liver is one of the most important organs in your body, and in this modern day and age it has a tough job to do. Everywhere we go we are exposed to harmful toxins. Whether it be through smog and pollution from manufacturing or motors, or consumption of processed foods and alcohol, any toxins that we ingest have to be processed and eradicated from the body through the liver. It is also responsible for a whole plethora of functions such as nutrient storage and conversion, cholesterol production and the regulation of blood composition. Quite simply, we could not survive without it.
Scarily, most of the time stress on the liver can go unnoticed, and so unless you went for some medical testing, you would be none the wiser. With that in mind, it seems stupid not to pay some well needed attention to it.
One key way that you can help detoxify your liver and have it functioning efficiently, is to increase your sulfur intake. These days, the human diet is pretty deficient in sulfur, however it is essential for one of the detoxification pathways of the liver known as the cytochrome P450 detoxification pathway. Cytochrome P450 is the name given to a family of some 50 enzymes that are responsible for stage I liver detoxification. This is responsible for eradicating alcohols, chemicals and carcinogens and processing them into water and oxygen. The enzymes also play key roles in bile production (key to digestion), and the synthesis of vitamin D (healthy bones), so you can see why it would be important to support their functions.
There are two types of sulfur needed for this detoxification process, non-protein-bound sulfur, and protein-bound sulfur. Protein-bound sulfur can be acquired by consuming cooked meats and semi-soft egg yolks. Non-protein bound sulfur can be found in vegetables, more so in vegetables such as Brussels sprouts and Kale, so drinking a juice rich in these vegetables can prove to have positive effects on your liver.
Juicing can also benefit your liver by the increasing amount of flavonoids in your diet—which can fight inflammatory disease and aid in bile production—and the polyphenols found in berries such as blueberries and raspberries—shown to reduce the risk of cancer in the liver.
The Argument Against Juicing
Like with most things diet or health related, you will find cases for and against a topic. Juicing is no different. The problem seems to be the way people interpret the subject, for example: eating a high fat, low carbohydrate diet for weight loss. This doesn’t mean you should go out there and start munching on burger patties and deep fried wings, however some people will see it that way.
The same can be said for juicing. While there are tons of benefits with juicing as we’ve seen, it can be a bit of a double edged sword at times, and the way you proceed to juice will determine your final thoughts and health outcomes.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the common arguments against juicing and how you SHOULD go about them:
All or nothing.
For some reason there seems to be people out there who treat juicing as an “all or nothing” thing. What I mean by this is that they think to “juice” means to consume nothing but fruit and vegetable juices. They often don’t consume any whole foods, relying purely on drinks for their energy needs. This obviously leaves them hungry and tired as juices leave the stomach and are digested twice as fast as whole foods, and are also low in fats and proteins, and therefore calories. This can often result in a rebound effect that has people overeating to compensate for their extreme hunger while “juicing”.
Juicing should not be an “all or nothing” thing, rather you should look at it as a way of supplementing your already healthy (hopefully) diet with extra doses of vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to your health. Once you understand that, you can write off this argument against juicing.
I’ll just eat my fruits and vegetables!
This is something that will cross most people’s minds when first introduced to the concept of juicing. “Why should I spend all that money on a nice shiny juicer, I’ll just eat my fruit and vegetables? Isn’t that what most people do?”
Well, that’s great, but are you seriously telling me you can consume over eight servings of vegetables per day, and still have room for all the other foods you usually eat? Hmm, I think probably not! So then it seems silly to simply say you will eat all your fruits and vegetables, because the reality of it is that it’s hard unless you are a vegetarian or vegan. Some vegetables contain lots of fiber, and you will become way too full before you consume enough to provide you with the health benefits we’ve talked about.
In one standard eight oz. glass alone, you can fit a whopping six to eight servings of fruits and vegetables! All without the enormous amount of fiber that would usually accompany them!
Also, as we’ve already seen, the cooking process kills off the useful digestive enzymes. So while it may be cheaper to try and eat all your fruits and vegetables, you are going to struggle to get all your servings in, and you aren’t going to get the full benefits if you cook your vegetables.
I’ll use my blender instead, it’s the same.
This one comes up all the time, “I’m not wasting my money on a juicer when I have a blender, it’s the same thing!”
Well, if you’ve read this guide from the beginning you will already know that NO, they are not the same—I needn’t say anymore.
Juicing has too much sugar!
This is a statement that can actually have some weight behind it—if you juice the wrong way. The reason is that people can run off and jump into the deep end without really knowing what they are doing, and as a result they can end up juicing in all the wrong ways. Of course, if you are going to stand there juice 5 apples then your final drink is going to be loaded with sugar. But that’s not how you are supposed to juice! It’s like saying you are going to eat some cake, then eating the whole thing rather than having a slice; it’s all about moderation.
Yes, your juices should contain fruits as well as vegetables however they shouldn’t make up the bulk of the drink. Typically speaking, a good rule to follow is 80% vegetables, 20% fruit. By juicing this way you get all the goodness without heaps of sugar.
Different Kinds of Juicers
Right, so now we have had a good look at the benefits of juicing, and put to bed some of the arguments against it, I’m going to go over the different kinds of juicers as there are a few different types and it is important that you know what the differences are.
Juicing level: Beginner
Best for: Fast juicing, practicality, and people on a budget.
Centrifugal juicers are the most common of juicer you find in stores these days—due to their affordability.
They work by first cutting the fruit or vegetable using a spinning blade, and then spinning the chopped produce at high speed. The centrifugal force produced by the spinning, forces the juice through holes in the side of the container walls, leaving the pulp contained in the basket; kind of how a dryer works by spinning clothes to remove the water.
The main benefit this type of juicer is the price. You can find these machines reasonably priced, from as little as $50.00. That’s a bargain when compared to of the other types of juicer.
They are fairly quick to use unlike some other types of juicers, and can take large chunks of fruits and vegetables.
They are pretty good at juicing fibrous kinds of vegetables that can cause problems with other twin and single gear juicers.
They are also dead easy to operate, and equally as easy to clean.
As this machine relies on centrifugal force to extract the juice there can often be a lot of moisture left in the pulp. This means you typically have to re-juice the pulp to get the most out of your vegetables and fruits.
Due to the high speed spinning, this kind of juicer produces heat that can oxidize the juice quickly; creating a foam. This also means that the juice has to be consumed as soon as possible to stop further degrading of the juices quality.
Leafy greens don’t typically juice well, or at all in this kind of juicer.
Finally, as this machine depends of the fast spinning container, they can be loud to use unless you go for a pricier brand.
The best centrifugal juicers to buy
The top three centrifugal juicers available today are listed here to make it extra easy for you to pick your machine. After all, it’s an investment, so you want to make sure your juicer is up to the job and one of the top performers.
Coming in at top spot it the Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain Plus. For an ultra-low price, this juicer gives you the most bang for your buck in the centrifugal world.
The heavy duty 850-watt motor is fast and powerful while giving you control over its speed. It has two speed settings, allowing you to process softer fruits and vegetables at 6,500 rpm and harder produce at a whopping 12,000 rpm. Due to it’s power, it handles tougher vegetables, such as celery and kale, that can give centrifugal type juicers a few problems—a huge bonus. Despite its power, it is surprisingly quiet and yields good amounts of juice. It’s also extremely durable, thanks to its heavy grade polymer body, and has received good reviews from people who use it heavily on a daily basis.
Stand out features
At three inches wide, the patented extra-wide feed chute means that few fruits and vegetables require chopping or preparation beforehand, which is ideal if you are short on time. Combine that with its patented direct central feed system, and you have a recipe for fast juicing with high juice yields.
The overload protection helps safeguard your juicer and extend its life by automatically shutting the machine down if too much load is put on it, and the safety locking arm stops the juicer from running unless the cover is locked into place.
The patented Nutri Disc juicing system yields high quality juice for a centrifugal juicer, transferring less than 1.8° Fahrenheit of heat to the juice, which means the enzymes in the juice stay well-protected against unnecessary oxidation that most centrifugal systems create.
Ease of use
Made so you can juice like a pro, even when you are a beginner, this juicer is easy to assemble, use, and clean. What makes it even easier to clean is that all parts, except for the mesh filter Nutri Disc, are dishwasher safe.
There have been a few reports of slight leakage, but the majority of feedback report no issues despite heavy use. Therefore, it is clear that the majority of machines have no issues whatsoever.
Taking the silver medal is another offering from Breville with the Breville BJE200XL Compact Juice Fountain 700-Watt Juice Extractor. With many features similar to the JE98XL, this juicer is the ideal entry level centrifugal machine, packing some nice features into a compact unit.
While there is no adjustable speed setting, the Breville BJE200XL features a 700-watt, 14,000 rpm motor that is ideal for use with hard fruits and vegetables, extracting large amounts of juice quickly. This juicer is so powerful that it will actually extract 250 mL of juice in less than three seconds!
It is worth noting that the fast motor causes this juicer produce more heat than its big brother and oxidizes the juice. With that said, the quality of juice from this machine is top notch for a centrifugal juicer, and in terms of speed, it is one of the fastest.
Stand out features
Like the more powerful JE98XL, this juicer features the patented 3.3” wide feed chute with internal cutting blade; there is little need to chop produce in advance. It also has the patented stainless steel cutting disc that is reported to produce 30% more juice and 40% more vitamins and minerals when compared to similar centrifugal machines. This juicer is also neat and compact, with an ingenious design.
Ease of use
As an entry level juicer, this machine is extremely simple to use. There are only five parts to clean, and most of them are dishwasher safe.
The powerful motor running at 14,000 rpm makes some noise, and if you juice softer fruits and veggies, the machine can shoot some of the juice directly up if you don’t cover the chute.
Coming in third is the Black & Decker JE2200B 400-Watt Fruit and Vegetable Juice Extractor, and what a steal it is! You may think that was a typo; surely you can’t get a good juicer for under $30.00? Well, it turns out you can. This juicer is the perfect for a beginner or casual juicer. It’s compact, stylish, and makes good juice for a more than reasonable price.
Don’t be fooled by this juicer’s lower power rating when compared with the two mentioned above; its 400-watt motor is more than enough to make quick work of your fruits and veggies so you can have some scrumptious juice in no time.
Stand out features
You can manage pulp with the 28 ounce pulp collector that allows you to choose how much pulp goes in your drink.
It comes with a two-year warranty, which is amazing for a product in this price category and gives you confidence that it is more than capable of juicing all your produce.
The juicer pitcher has handy quantity markers; you can make sure all your friends and family get their fair share of tasty juice!
Ease of use
You can’t get any simpler than this; it really is a juicer for dummies. The majority of the parts are top-rack dishwasher safe, and the unit is easy to assemble and disassemble.
The feed chute on this juicer is quite small, so you will need to cut your produce before juicing. It is also quite noisy—probably a reason for the low price.
Juicing level: Intermediate
Best for: Versatility and high juice yield.
The next step up from a centrifugal juicer, is a masticating juicer.
Fruits and veggies are fed into the top of the juicer then crushed and squeezed by an auger. The juice then trickles out into your container, while the pulp is squeezed out horizontally. This is a slower process than the centrifugal juicer however yields better juice.
Probably the best advantage the masticating juicer has, the ability to retain more of the nutrients in the fruits and veggies you want to consume. Unlike the centrifugal juicer, the masticating machine works at a slow speed. This decreases oxidation and allows you to keep more of the nutrients intact. These juicers also manage to squeeze more juice out of the fruits and vegetables you put in so you get slightly more value out of your produce.
As these juicer rely on a crushing and squeezing action rather than spinning, you are able to actually get the juice out of leafy vegetables like spinach, kale and wheatgrass.
With regards to the speed of the crushing and squeezing, as masticating juicers are slow juicers, they create less heat when compared to centrifugal juicers. The low power and low heat aspect of these juicers means they last a really long time, and some brands will come with a whopping 15 year guarantee.
They can also go a step further than just juicing, and some single motor masticating juicers can be used to make nut butters, pates, sorbets and much more!
These kind of juicers cost more than your typical centrifugal juicer, and if you are not someone who frequently juices then you could end up spending a lot of un-needed money.
Masticating juicers tend to need more assembly and have more parts when compared to centrifugal juicers. This means they require a bit more cleaning time, and can also be a bit trickier to clean.
As these juicer crush and churn the product you put into them, they work at a much slower rate, which means they are not ideal when you are in a rush.
They can come with rather small openings on the chutes, which means you often have to cute produce into smaller sized chunks.
The Best Masticating Juicers to Buy
The top pick of masticating juicers is the Omega J8006 Nutrition Center Juicer. The price represents extremely good value, considering that it does more than just juice. It can make nut butters, tasty baby foods for your little one, and even extrude pasta or grind coffee.
It’s stylish, too, with its smooth lines and professional-looking black and chrome finish. This really is the juicer to have if consider buying a masticating juicer.
The 80 rpm, low-speed motor is powerful and will crush any fruits and vegetables you throw in this juicer. Not only that, but due to its low speed operation and dual stage juicing, there is minimal oxidation and heat creation, so you get high quality juice yields that can be kept for up to 72 hours without quality deterioration.
Stand out features
The GE Ultem Auger is up to eight times stronger than most other plastics used to make augers, which means juicing usually-tricky leafy greens is a breeze. This machine is also extremely versatile, and it can do much more than just make juice; it can make nut butters or grinds coffee beans.
A dual-stage juicing system makes sure you get the most out of your produce. First, the fruits and vegetables are crushed and the pulp separated, then the pulp is juiced a second time to ensure that you get the most juice possible and are left with an extremely dry pulp.
A fifteen-year of warranty should be enough to assure you that this machine is a top player in the juicing world and has been engineered to the highest standards.
Ease of use
Even though this juicer is intermediate when compared to the centrifugal juicers mentioned, this machine is simple to use and clean. Pulp is automatically ejected, so you don’t need to worry about taking the machine apart. There is also a built in reverse function that will stop any possible clogs from fibrous veggies, which happens with other machines.
There aren’t many downsides to this juicer other than the need to chop produce before juicing it, but that’s normal for this kind of juicer.
Another good product from Omega is the Omega VRT350 Heavy Duty Dual-Stage Vertical Single Auger Low Speed Juicer. Its unique vertical design is sleek, eye catching, and takes up less space in your kitchen while providing all the power of typical masticating juicer.
Like the Omega J8006 juicer, this machine features the dual stage juicing system that juices the pulp twice to ensure highest juice yields. It also has an 80 rpm motor that runs silently and doesn’t compromise the quality of your juice. While the juice is of great quality, it is not as froth-free as the Omega J8006, which is why this juicer is the second choice for a masticating juicer.
Stand out features
The vertical design of this juicer not only makes it extremely attractive and compact, but it also makes assembly very simple. It has handy little red dots to help line up and stack the few parts, making it easy to disassemble and clean. Its low speed motor really is quiet, so you don’t need to worry about waking anyone up or disturbing anyone watching their favorite soap opera in the next room. It also features a reverse function, allowing you to unclog the machine when fibrous veggies get caught.
Ease of use
Simple to assemble and use, you will have no problem with this juicer. Its stackable design is smaller than typical masticating juicers, which makes it easy to take apart, and there are only a few parts.
Fibrous veggies tend to clog this juicer more than the horizontal design, so you will need to cut the veggies up into smaller pieces in order to avoid unclogging. It also isn’t capable of making nut butters or grinding coffee like the Omega J8006 can; it is solely a juicer.
Juicing level: Frequent juicer.
Best for: Juicing anything.
A step up from the masticating juicer is the triturating juicer. Triturating literally means to crush, grind or chew into fine particles. This machine is composed of two augers that rotate inwards towards each other, with a super precise gap of less than half a millimeter. Like with the masticating juicer, produce is fed into the top, the juice trickles out the bottom, and the super dry pulp comes out horizontally.
This juicer will pretty much handle anything you throw at it. You can juice fibrous vegetables and leafy greens with ease due to the ultra-fine gap between the augers. They can also be used to make baby foods, nut butters, frozen desserts and even extract milks from soy beans and nuts.
They work slowly and produce zero heat, which means you end up with no oxidation whatsoever. The slow mechanism ensures that the cell structures within the produce retain their integrity. This means you can store your fresh juice in the fridge for up to three days with no problems whatsoever. They are also nearly silent due to their slow operation.
As they have an extremely small gap between the augers, they are able to extract more nutrients than you could ever dream of, splitting open the cell membranes and releasing a huge amount of enzymes and nutrients.
The biggest downside to this type of juicer has got to be the price, starting at around $300 for a basic one, and soaring into the thousands for the top of the range machines.
They also have A LOT of parts and require quite a bit of assembly, which ultimately means cleanup is bit of an arduous process.
They’re a heavy duty machine; not ideal for travelling or moving around often. You would want to find a spot in your kitchen for this machine to feature rather than storing it away in a cupboard and having to take it out each time you use it.
Best Triturating Juicer
The Tribest Green Star Elite GSE-5000 Jumbo Twin Gear Juice Extractor is the best triturating juicer for combining exceptional performance, quality juice, and a reasonable price. The price is so good that there aren’t any other machines that come close to offering such performance for money. That’s why there is only one recommendation here—this is the best by a mile.
This juicer does it all, and superbly. The exclusive Jumbo Twin Gear technology has gears separated by a mere four-thousandths of an inch. This tiny gap between the augers, combined with the low 110 rpm motor speed, ensures your juice is of the highest quality with little oxidation and zero heat damage. Tribest claims that independent laboratory tests of this machine yield juice that can be up to 200% richer in minerals such as calcium, iron, and zinc than juice from other machines.
Stand out features
The inclusion of four different screens allows you to control the pulp output in your juice, from a fine screen that will produce minimal pulp to a coarse screen that will allow some of the fibrous pulp to make its way into your drink. Cutting points embedded in the twin gears make juicing sinewy vegetables like celery a breeze, while the magnetic technology creates a field that rearranges clusters of water, allowing the augers to extract more of the valuable vitamins and minerals.
The bio-ceramic material within the gears emits a stabilizing wavelength that water and all organic materials have, thus helping your juice to remain stable and fresher for longer. This machine is also completely versatile, allowing you to create sorbets, sauces, and even pates. This makes this machine so much more than just a juicer.
Ease of use
A little trickier than the other juicers mentioned because there are more parts, but the GSE-5000 is still considerable easy to use once you know how.
It’s a little trickier to clean this machine because it has more parts than the other recommended juicers. The fine screen in particular can be a little tough to clean. They key is to clean the machine right after use. The feed chute is also quite small, so a good amount of chopping needs to be done head of time.
Hydraulic Press Juicers
Juicing level: The “hardcore” juicer.
Best for: Daily use, juicing anything and everything.
Sitting on its throne, the king of juicers out there, is the Hydraulic press juicer, or commonly called the “cold press juicer”.
The process is completely different to the juicers we have looked at so far, and this kind of machine requires two stages. The first step is to create a fine pulp. Fruits and vegetables are fed into the machines chute, and the machine churns them and outputs a pulp. This pulp is then wrapped in a linen style cloth and placed on the hydraulic press. The press then exerts extreme force (up to 2 metric tons) that squeezes out every possible drop of juice, leaving a pale dry pulp.
They come either as a manual press, requiring you to pulp or chop your vegetables first and then use a manual crank to operate the hydraulic press, or for a higher price tag, come completely equipped to perform both steps automatically.
This juicer will give you the freshest, most nutrient dense juice you could ever image, and is probably the best juice that commercially available machinery can make today—the quality is clearly seen by the pale, dry pulp that is left. Its juice yield is up to 100% more when compared to centrifugal juicers, and up to 50% more than masticating and Triturating juicers.
There is absolutely no heating whatsoever, which retains the fruit and vegetables nutritional integrity.
These machines—unlike some of the others—are simple to put together and don’t have many parts. This means they are easy to clean and maintain, as well as easy to use.
If you get a machine with the built in grinding function, it can often perform other functions such as making nut butter and baby foods, just like the twin auger machine.
If you go for a hydraulic juicer with a built in “crusher” then you are looking at spending upwards of a thousand dollars to get what you want. On the other hand, you can buy just the hydraulic press for around $400—still a little pricey, but better.
Because these machines create a huge amount of force, they are heavy bits of kit, so again, like the twin auger machines, you don’t want to move them around too much, and they definitely aren’t portable.
Because of the two stage system they do also take a bit longer to achieve the final product when compared to some of the faster options we have looked at.
The Best Hydraulic Press Juicer
Just one juicer is mentioned in this category, as automatic hydraulic juicers are quite hard to come by and will set you back thousands of dollars. The Welles or Peoples Juice Press BLACK is a manual cold press juicer that will produce the best quality juice with no oxidation.
The hydraulic press can produce two metric tons of pressure, enough to squeeze the juice out of anything, and the pulp that is left is as dry as cardboard. The cold pressing makes hydraulic juicers the best in terms of juice quality, as there is no heat or oxidation.
Stand out features
Super easy to use and clean, this juicer is the simplest of them all and produces the best quality, nutrient dense juice. The frame has a long, ten-year warranty, so there’s no worrying about the massive pressures exerted on the unit, and the pump has a one-year warranty.
It’s no lie that these juicers are a little pricey and are more suited to people who are really concerned about the nutrient content of their juice. If you have any problems with the hydraulic pump, it can be pricey to fix or replace if it’s not under warranty.
Which One Should I Buy?
At the end of the day there is a juicer for everyone, from the beginner who is just experimenting with juicing, to the “hardcore” juicer who will use it heavily each day. It’s not for me to tell you which kind you should buy, I have highlighted the pros and cons of each above. Personally speaking, I would opt for a masticating or triturating juicer as in my opinion they offer the best “bang for buck” if you are fairly serious about juicing.
All that is left is for you to match your needs against one of the choices and get going!
Fruits & Veggies and Their Benefits
Now that we have had a look at why you should be juicing and the different types of juicer you can get, let’s talk about some of the best fruits and vegetables for you to juice and why I consider them the best.
Everyone’s heard the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”, and I absolutely agree.
Not only do apples taste great—that sharpness combined with delicious fruit sweetness—but they have a bunch of health benefits that make them a must have when juicing.
They are a great source of vitamin C, which is a great way to deal with some of those free radicals floating around in your body and boost your immune system.
They also have a good dose of the flavonoid quercetin, which is praised for its anti-inflammatory and anti-histamine properties.
This lycopene-rich fruit is one that I consume almost every day. The high lycopene (a carotenoid phytonutrient) content in red and pink grapefruits is thought to have strong anti-oxidant properties, helping particularly against tumor formation. In a study published by the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition it was found that men that frequently consume fruits and vegetables rich in lycopene were 82% less susceptible to the risk of prostate cancer when compared to those who consumed the least amounts of lycopene-rich foods.5
Also, according to the American Heart Association, consuming higher amounts of citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruits can significantly reduce the risk of ischemic stroke. This is due to the high amounts of flavonoids present. The results of the study indicated that women who consumed high amounts of flavanones from primarily orange and grapefruit juice, had a 19% lower risk of ischemic stroke when compared to women who consumed the least.6
Pineapple really is one of the world’s magical tropical fruits, with all kinds of therapeutic properties.
To start with, just one cup of pineapple has about 75% of your daily recommended allowance of manganese; an essential mineral that helps regulate your metabolism, aid in bone development when young, bone strengthening when older, and the healing of wounds. Awesome stuff.
Pineapples are also rich in the enzyme bromelain that helps to break proteins down into simpler forms. This aids in digestion of meats and other protein-rich foods and it’s for that reason that bromelain is often used to treat digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome and constipation. Bromelain has also demonstrated potent anti-inflammatory properties that go beyond some medications. In a clinical study published by Quintessence International, 80 patients undergoing impacted third molar surgery were split into two groups post-surgery. The study group were treated with bromelain and painkillers, while the control group were only prescribed painkillers. The results showed that in the study group, pain, edema, and erythema were significantly lower than the control group, leading them to conclude that “The present study demonstrates an important anti-inflammatory and anti-edematous effect of bromelain.”7
Other essential fruits
Some other essential fruits that I think should be a part of any “juicers” ingredient basket include:
A “super-green” some might say, Kale has a whole bunch of cancer fighting nutrients for your body.
Jam packed with calcium, protein, potassium, carotenoids and phytochemicals, Kale helps fight cancer and keep your heart healthy.
As discussed earlier, the modern diet tends to be rich in sodium, and lacking in potassium. Kale has a good dosage of potassium to help balance out your body and reduce your blood pressure as well as your risk for heart disease.
Kale is also high in vitamin A, which helps the maintenance of your skin, hair, and nails, keeping them strong and healthy.
It also contains a bundle of b-vitamins key for brain development and is rich in protein; with nearly three grams per cup!
Like I said, it’s a “super-green”
Like Kale, celery is great for lowering blood pressure due to its potassium content. With 166 mg potassium per stalk, it has good diuretic properties that are ideal if you are someone who is prone to retaining water. Celery can help you reduce your bloat and detoxify your body at the same time.
Celery contains a powerful acetylenic compounds that have been found to inhibit the growth of cancerous tumor cells. It also contains a long list of phenolic acids, such as caffeic acid, that can boost athletic performance and provide anti-inflammatory actions. Test tube studies have also demonstrated that caffeic acid may be effective in decreasing the growth of cancer cells.
The cabbage is a great cruciferous vegetable that offers some surprising, and astonishing benefits.
With over 100% of your daily needed vitamin K in just half of a cup, cabbage is ideal to juice in order to help maintain strong bones, prevent heart disease and fend off problems such as tooth decay, dementia and cardiovascular disease. The high amounts of vitamin K also help keep the brain healthy by helping to prevent nerve damage. This can improve concentration and general mental health.
Cabbage can also help prevent or delay the development of cancer with the compound sulforaphane that inhibits the harmful enzyme histone deacetylase (HDAC). This enzyme can progress cancer development, so cabbages ability to inhibit it is extremely beneficial.
A study published by the American College of Rheumatology looked at SFNs (sulforaphane) ability to block cartilage destruction in osteoarthritis. The study concluded that “SFN inhibits the expression of key metalloproteinases implicated in osteoarthritis, independently of Nrf2, and blocks inflammation at the level of NF-κB to protect against cartilage destruction in vitro and in vivo.” Or in simpler terms, sulforaphane can block cartilage destroying enzymes by intercepting the molecule that causes inflammation.
The sulfur content of cabbage also helps in the development of keratin, which is essential for strong, healthy hair and nails. The sulfur also helps to dry out some of the oil in your skin, which can cause you to break out in acne.
Other essential vegetables
Fruits and vegetables you can’t juice
Unfortunately not all fruits and vegetables can be juiced, and if you try to feed them in to your lovely new machine they could cause a few problems. The following fruits and vegetables can NOT be juiced:
Peeling Before Juicing
One of the first questions that runs through the mind of a beginner juicer is “do I peel my fruit and veg before juicing?” The answer isn’t a clear yes or no, and a lot of the time will be down to whether or not you like the taste of the juice that comes from the peel.
One thing to consider when deciding whether or not to peel your produce is that if you do not have organic produce the peels may contain toxic pesticides; something you want to avoid altogether. In this case I would suggest peeling the fruit or veg.
That being said, if you have organic produce then the skins of some fruits and vegetables can contain nutritional benefits. Bananas peels, for example, are rich in serotonin, which is a mood booster, and can help people with lower serotonin levels who are prone to being depressed.
Other examples of nutrient rich skins can be found in the table below:
Produce that you should peel before juicing are:
The Perfect Juice Ratio
OK, so you are pretty much set up and know all you need to know about how and what to juice, but one point that I feel is important to go over is the ratio of fruits and vegetables that you put into a drink.
What you don’t want to be doing is juicing 90% fruits, then just throwing in a little vegetable at the end for the sake of it. This is where juicing can become a negative thing, as you are going to start consuming too much sugar.
So what is the perfect ratio of fruit to vegetables?
Well, generally speaking, a good ratio to follow is 4:1, or 80% – 20%, with the 80% being vegetables. This means that for every serving of fruit you are going to juice, you should include four servings of vegetables.
What is a “serving”?
A good question. For fruits, a serving is typically one piece, like an apple pear, however; when it comes to vegetables and large fruits such as watermelons, a serving should be considered one cup of chopped produce. This will keep the playing field level so you know that each serving you are putting into your machine is roughly the same size.
Mix it up
If you are consuming more than one juice a day—well done—then you can by all means mix up the ratio a little bit. What I mean by this is that you could start the day with a juice that is 50:50 fruit and vegetables, and make up the vegetables over the course of the day. This could be done by juicing just one piece of fruit and one serving of vegetables for breakfast, then consuming one or two more juices comprises of purely vegetables, or heavily skewed in the vegetables favor. The point I am trying to make here is that you need to be conservative with your sugar, because if you start juicing mainly fruits, you are going to negate some of the health benefits of juicing, potentially causing problems associated with a high sugar intake.
Commonly Asked Questions
Do I replace meals with my juices?
This is one of the most common questions around juicing, and while some “juice fast” style diets do exist out there, I am of the opinion that NO, you shouldn’t replace meals with juicing, rather you should use juicing as a way of supplementing your diet. Your drinks will not contain a huge number of calories, and certainly won’t contain enough to be considered a meal.
How often should I juice?
Every day if possible! You’ve seen all the benefits you can get from juicing so why wouldn’t you?
Try to get into a habit of juicing with one of your meals each day. I like to have a glass with breakfast as it helps give me a kick up the butt and energize me for the day ahead.
How long can I keep my juice?
This will be dependent on your juicer and how much oxidation it causes. If you have a centrifugal juicer, then you need to consume your juice right away as the spinning motion causes a lot of oxidation and the juice continues to deteriorate right away. A masticating and twin gear juicer will extend your juice’s life out to 24-48 hours due to less heat and motion that can disturb the produces enzymes, and a cold press (hydraulic) juicer can make your juice last up to three days as there is typically none, or little oxidation.
Whichever style juicer you have, it is important that you store your juice in an air tight container in the fridge to prevent any further oxidation. It is also important that you don’t keep opening and closing the container also, for the same reasons, and that you consume your juices as soon as possible.
Making juice is pretty simple task in itself, but if you are new to juicing or just want something to refer to, try to follow these simple steps to making juice.
- Wash and/or peel fruits and veggies thoroughly. As you are consuming raw produce, you need to make sure you was you produce thoroughly to get rid of any bacteria that could be lurking on the surface. Also, peel any required fruits and veggies.
- Chop your fruits and veggies to an appropriate size so they fit the chute on your juicer. It’s best to do this right before you juice rather than in advance, as the produce will start to lose nutritional value during the cutting process.
- Start to juice your fruits and vegetables. Your juicers manual should tell you what setting to use for certain kinds of fruits, as harder, more fibrous produce tends to need a faster setting than softer produce.
- Collect your pulp and re-juice if it is slightly moist to get the most out of your fruit and vegetables. This applies more to those using masticating or twin gear juicers.
- Enjoy your fresh glass of juice packed with vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients! If you have a centrifugal juicer, try consuming your juice with ice as these kinds of juicers can warm the juice slightly.
- Time to clean, the worst part of juicing! You should refer to your juicers manual to see which kinds of cleaning products are suitable, and the best method of cleaning.
Top 10 Health Boosting Recipes
There are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of recipes you can experiment with in your spare time. The ten recipes below are some key picks for a range of health benefits. What are you waiting for? Get Juicing!
- Liver Detox Juice Recipe (liver health)
- The V-8 Recipe (cancer prevention)
- The Heart Beat Recipe (heart disease prevention)
- The Fat Dissolver (weight loss aid)
- Dragon Blood (energy boost)
- Hair Hairoine (healthy hair and nails)
- Salsa Juice (pain relief)
- Banish Belly Bloat Juice (bloating relief)
- The Eye Opener (eye health)
- Flower Power (lower blood pressure)
Juicing Tips and Tricks
Juice soft, fibrous fruits last
The last thing you want is all the fibers blocking up the filter before you have finished juicing, so try to juice all your soft, fibrous fruits and veggies last.
Rather than juicing one item at a time, fill up the chute of your juicer and once running compact the produce down and keep filling.
Don’t turn off too soon
Leave your machine running for 15-30 seconds after the last of the produce is juiced to make sure you get every little drop.
Make cleaning easy
If your juicer has a pulp container, line it with a plastic bag. This will save time in the cleaning process. Also, you should clean your machine as quickly as possible to stop pulp and juices drying and becoming tougher to clean.
Try to drink your juice soon after it’s made. While it is fine to keep some juices stored in the fridge, you will get the most nutritional value soon after juicing.
Use the pulp
There are a number of ways you can use the pulp. Try adding it to baked goods, for a little extra flavor and moisture. Carrot pulp will add a little sweetness to baked goods. You can even add the pulp back to your juice for a little extra fiber. You could also use the pulp to make compost.
Make sure to store your juice in an air tight container and keep in the fridge. Fill the container as much as possible to avoid extra oxidation.
Best Juicing Recipe Books to Get You Started
A juicing recipe book is an essential item for the avid juicer and can open you up to all kinds of recipes and produce combinations you would have never thought of yourself.
Below are three books that I would recommend to every juicer.
With more than 400 recipes, this book is a must-have for any juicer. All the recipes are organized by key ingredients, nutrients, and health benefits, and you will find creative recipes that you would never have thought existed. The book itself is beautiful, showcasing lots of full-color pictures that will make you start juicing as soon as possible. You can also find recipes for delicious teas made with fresh herbs, and it even teaches you the correct way to peel your fruits!
If you are looking for a great way to include more greens to your diet, this is a great option. This book gives you tons of recipes, so you can have a green juice or smoothie every day, offering you lots of health benefits as well as weight loss support. All the recipes in this book are delicious and easy to follow.
This book is one of the bestselling juicing books, with over 700,000 copies sold, and the first edition won the International Cookbook Revue Award in 2000. The recipes in this book will make you use spices and herbs that you may never have thought would go well together, like lavender, powdered licorice, dandelions, red raspberry leaves, stinging nettle, kelp, and so much more. The book is divided in eight main sections, which makes it very easy to use.
- Hung, H.C., et al., Fruit and vegetable intake and risk of major chronic disease. J Natl Cancer Inst, 2004. 96(21): p. 1577-84.
- CDC, NCHS. Underlying Cause of Death 1999-2013 on CDC WONDER Online Database, released 2015. Data are from the Multiple Cause of Death Files, 1999-2013, as compiled from data provided by the 57 vital statistics jurisdictions through the Vital Statistics Cooperative Program. Accessed Feb. 3, 2015.
- Dietary nitrate provides sustained blood pressure lowering in hypertensive patients, Vikas Kapil, et al., Hypertension, doi:10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.114.04675, published online 24 November 2014.
- A. T. Diplock1, J.-L. Charleux, G. Crozier-Willi, F. J. Kok, C. Rice-Evans, M. Roberfroid, W. Stahl, J. Vina-Ribes. Functional food science and defence against reactive oxidative species, British Journal of Nutrition 1998, 80, Suppl. 1, S77–S112
- Jian L, Lee AH, Binns CW. Tea and lycopene protect against prostate cancer. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2007;16 Suppl 1:453-7. 2007. PMID:17392149.
- Aedín Cassidy, Eric B. Rimm, Éilis J. O’Reilly, Giancarlo Logroscino, Colin Kay, Stephanie E. Chiuve, and Kathryn M. Rexrode. Dietary Flavonoids and Risk of Stroke in Women. Stroke, February 23 2012 DOI: 10.1161/STROKEAHA.111.637835
- Therapeutic efficacy of bromelain in impacted third molar surgery: A randomized controlled clinical study. Ordesi P, et al. Quintessence Int. 2014 Jul 10.
- “Cranberries”. The World’s Healthiest Foods, The George Matejlin Foundation.