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There’s nothing better you can do for your body this year than load it with a variety of fruits and vegetables. Unfortunately, though, most people eat too few fruits and vegetables.
Given the sheer number of people suffering from chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, some cancers, and obesity these days, it’s no wonder that only 12.2 percent of American adults are meeting the dietary standards for fruit, and only 9.3 percent are meeting the dietary standards for vegetables as set forth by the CDC.
On top of that, I would venture to say that even the current Dietary Guidelines doesn’t go far enough when it comes to how many fruits and vegetables a person really needs to maintain good health. The CDC recommends adults consume 1.5 to two cups of fruit per day, and two to three cups of vegetables per day. This is not enough, at least in my opinion.
The fact is, if you want to be healthy, you’ll want to enjoy a big serving of vegetables at EVERY meal. Yes, EVERY meal. In fact, half your plate should be loaded with a variety of vegetables. The vegetables shouldn’t be the side dish; rather, they should be the main attraction.
That said, I know that eating a variety of vegetables is challenging. Even I don’t get enough despite spending most of my days talking about what good nutrition means. I totally get the challenges that comes with buying, keeping, preparing and actually eating a bounty of fruits and veggies on any given day. It’s much easier to grab a pre-packaged bar in our purse when we’re hungry, or order a burger and fries when on the go.
If you want to turn around your health, commit yourself to adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet this year. The best, easiest and fastest way to do this is through juicing (at least I find juicing easy and palatable). Thanks to juicing, I’ve been able to get even the most veggie-reluctant person to fall in love with vegetables again, so I know it’s possible (and probable) if you give juicing a try.
In this article, I’m going to discuss three things (so feel free to skip ahead to the parts you need most!):
- Getting Started with Juicing
- 10 Amazing Juice Recipes
- How the 10-Day Juicing Challenge Works
At the end of the post, you’ll have the opportunity to download every single recipe and a shopping list, so don’t worry about printing everything if you don’t have the time.
(1) Getting Started with Juicing
Getting started with juicing is easy. You just need the right tools and a little know-how.
Purchasing a Juicer
The first thing you need is juicer. If you’re new to juicing, simply buy a juicer for around $100 or less to get started. There are fancier models available that do different things, but for the sake of getting started, a standard juicer will do.
Two juicers I recommend include the Jack LaLanne Power Electric Juicer. I’ve been using this exact juicer for more than six years and it is still going strong (and it gets good use around here!). A lot of people I know also like and trust the Breville Juice Extractor as well. Breville juicers, on average, are more expensive than Jack LaLanne juicers. Read reviews, ask around and choose one that fits your budget.
Deciding What to Juice
You can juice most fruits and vegetables, but there are a few guidelines and exceptions.
For example, you cannot juice bananas or avocados because they do not give off any juice and will clog your juicer. You also cannot put large fruit peels, like those on oranges, grapefruits and lemons through your juicer.
That said, you can easily put through your juicer a cucumber (with peel), as well as beets, carrots and ginger with the peel left on too. Also, there is no need to remove the stem or seeds from apples, carrots or strawberries. Go ahead and juice them too.
When juicing citrus fruits like oranges, lemons and grapefruits, leave as much as the white pith on the fruit as possible as the pith offers added health benefits. The pith of an orange, for example, adds Vitamin C and fiber to your juice.
Creating Your Own Juicing Recipes
When juicing, it’s important to include the right juices. Aim to include at least one juicy vegetable (celery, cucumber, carrot, beet, peppers) and one juicy fruit (orange, grapes, pineapple, mango, strawberries). These fruits and vegetables give good juice and add bulk to your drink.
I recommend adding in green leafy vegetables (kale, spinach, Swiss chard) and flavor enhancers like ginger root, turmeric root, parsley, mint, etc.
As you get more experienced at juicing and creating juicing recipes, I encourage you to add more vegetables than fruit. The more vegetables you consume, the better you will feel and the less sugar and calories you’ll consume… so get your kale, spinach and Swiss chard on!
I’ve written extensively on the benefits of green juicing already, but I want to reiterate that juicing is good for you, especially if you don’t like to eat fruits and vegetables all that much.
Juicing provides an easy and delicious way to get all the fruits and vegetables you need in one fell swoop. In fact, when you juice, your body is able to quickly absorb about 99 percent of the nutrients within 20 minutes of consuming the juice. When you chew your food, you only absorb about 40 percent of the nutrients and your body has to work hard chewing and digesting.
For those of us with celiac disease, digestive issues, autoimmune disease or other chronic conditions, giving our digestive system a much needed rest while offering a fast intake of nutrients is a welcoming endeavor. After all, if your gut is damaged, you should rest it so it can properly heal, just as you’d rest a broken leg.
Don’t listen to naysayers who tell you juicing strips the fruits and vegetables of fiber… these people don’t have digestive issues and they are likely not eating enough vegetables anyway. (If you prefer blending your vegetables and fruits, by all means do that. It is a little harder on your digestive system, but still offers amazing benefits.)
Remember, when juicing, don’t eat one hour before or one hour after juicing. Truly give your body a rest when you juice. And, as part of the 10-Day Juicing Challenge (which I discuss below), you should swap a daily juice for a meal or snack. This will accelerate weight loss, encourage your body to heal, and allows your digestive system ample time to rest while soaking in a major load of nutrients.
(2) 10 Amazing Juicing Recipes
Before I share with you how the 10-Day Juicing Challenge works, I want to share with you the 10 amazing juicing recipes I’ve developed. These juicing recipes are tried and true, helping you on your journey to boost your immune system while still giving your taste buds a treat!1. Ease Into Green Juice Recipe
This juice offers an easy way to ease into green juicing, especially if you’re not sure if juicing is for you. This juicing recipe includes all sorts of juicy fruits and vegetables, offering up a refreshing and delicious drink.
Click to get the Ease Into Green Juice Recipe
2. Carrot Cooler Juice Recipe
Enjoy orange juice in an entirely new way with carrots, apples, lemon and ginger – no oranges required! This “orange juice” is super refreshing and full of Vitamin A and antioxidants galore!
Click to get the Carrot Juice Recipe
3. Immunity Defender Juice Recipe
Stave off cold and flu symptoms with this immunity defender juicing recipe made with Vitamin C-loaded oranges, pineapple and yellow peppers. Fresh juice can boost your immune system and help you fend off whatever germs come your way (or at least lesson the severity of cold and flu symptoms). Did you know the flu vaccination in 2017-18 is only 10 percent effective – here are my tips on how to not get sick this cold and flu season.
Get the Immunity Defender Juice Recipe
4. Kale Courage Juice Recipe
If you’re feeling brave and ready to dive into true green juicing, give this Kale Courage green juicing recipe a try. Kale is one of the most nutrient-dense vegetables on the planet, and the orange and cucumber ensure the greens go down smoothly.
Get the Kale Courage Juice Recipe
5. Cool as a Cucumber Juice Recipe
This juice concoction goes down smooth and easy. The cucumber is refreshing and the pineapple adds just the right amount of sweetness. (I love juicing cucumber and pineapple, my two favorite produce to juice!) I have no doubt that this juicing recipe will soon become one of your favorite juicing recipes of all time!
6. Fresh and Minty Green Juice Recipe
Enjoy a refreshing and totally minty homemade green juice with this fresh and minty green juice recipe. You can add more or less mint to make it as minty fresh as you like!
7. Turmeric Tonic Juice Recipe
Infuse your juicing recipes with fresh turmeric to fight inflammation and deter disease from developing inside your body. Turmeric is known as a potent antioxidant and has been used as a natural remedy for centuries. Add fresh turmeric root (get it at your local Whole Foods store) to infuse your juice with super-nutrients!
Get the Turmeric Tonic Juice Recipe
8. Tart and Tangy Juice Recipe
Your tastebuds will tingle with the tart and tangy flavors of this homemade juice recipe… plus this juice is loaded with Vitamins A and C. Grapefruit pith (the white part around the grapefruit but under the peel) is good for you, so be sure to leave the pith on to get bonus antioxidant, nutrients and fiber.
Get the Tart and Tangy Juice Recipe
9. Celebrate Celery Juice Recipe
Despite what some people say, celery actually packs a nutritional punch. Just one cup of celery offers 37 percent of your daily Vitamin K needs! Furthermore, the green stalk is a rich source of flavonoids, which lowers inflammation and enhances the immune system.
Get the Celebrate Celery Juice Recipe
10. Antioxidant Boost Juice Recipe
Beets are known for their antioxidant powers and offer fantastic detoxification benefits to the liver. In fact, beets contain betaine (which helps liver cells eliminate toxins), pectic (which clears the toxins from the liver) and betalains (which encourage the detoxification process), according to mindbodygreen. On top of that, this juice includes blueberries, the #1 antioxidant fruit available on the market. Watch those free radicals go bye-bye when you drink this juice.
Get the Antioxidant Boost Juice Recipe
There you have it – 10 amazing juicing recipes to help you boost your immune system and jump start healing from within. Getting healthy never tasted so good!
(3) Take the 10-Day Juicing Challenge
If you’re inspired (and ready) to get healthy, I invite you to take my 10-Day Juicing Challenge. For 10 days, you agree to replace one meal or snack with an 8 oz. juice of choice.
I’ve tried to make this process a little easier for you.
Simply enter your email into this form and I’ll send you ALL 10 recipes PLUS a shopping list of all the ingredients you need to make these juices.
Here are a few guidelines to successfully executing and completing the 10-Day Juicing Challenge:
DO NOT add a juice to your meal; rather REPLACE a meal with a juice instead. If you add a juice to your meal, you’ll be adding way too many calories to your diet and you may end up gaining weight.
DO NOT eat anything for at least 1 hour before AND 1 hour after you juice. This will help ensure your digestive system is fully resting and doesn’t have to lift a finger to digest the juice.
DO prepare ahead of time. Purchase all fruits and vegetables you need to be successful on the challenge. Cut and wash veggies ahead of time, proportion the produce in baggies, and/or do whatever you need to do to set yourself up for success.
DO NOT pre-make juices. You must make the juice and then enjoy it within the hour of juicing to prevent bacteria for developing on the juice and making you sick.
DO track the changes in your mood, energy, body and health. Get in touch with your body.
DO make juice recipes you like. If there is a juice on this list that doesn’t work for you, don’t make it or change the recipe. You can make the same few juices every day. I do recommend, however, that you add as many leafy greens as you can in your diet, so find a green juice you like in your rotation of juices.
IF you’re still hungry after juicing, increase the amount of your juice intake. Each juice recipe makes about 8 oz. of juice, but if you weigh more than 150 lbs, I suggest you make a 12-16 oz. glass of juice. Adjust until you find what satisfies you most.
IF you’re on the road and don’t have access to your juicer, purchase a cold-pressed juice at the supermarket. Try Daily Greens, Suja or Evolution brand green juices and look for ones that have less fruit and more vegetables. Trader Joe’s has a fantastic cold pressed juice too. You don’t want your juice to contain more than 200 calories! (Remember, orange juice does not count! Look for “cold pressed” juices only.)
Take the Juicing Challenge
I'm ready to get healthy! Please sign me up for the 10-Day Juicing Challenge and send me a copy of all 10 juice recipes + the one-page shopping list to help me get started.