Before knowing the facts about fresh, cold-pressed juice, I didn’t fully recognize the positive impact it could have on my health.
I gave up meat in 2010 and became fully plant-based in 2014. I initially explored all variations of a plant-based diet, but I was hesitant to juice regularly. I already considered my diet to be very healthy. I didn’t believe juicing would give me any additional health benefits that could outweigh the work of making my own juice or the price of buying bottled juice.
After attending a raw food and juicing retreat in Costa Rica last year, my opinion started to shift. At the retreat, I replaced my morning coffee with a green juice, and after two days I didn’t even crave caffeine any more.
I remember thinking, “There must be something to this green juice thing.”
I began regularly incorporating green juice into my diet after returning to Austin, but when I started drinking unprocessed, cold-pressed juice, there was a noticeable difference in my health.
I value fresh, real food. I’m the type of person that buys produce every day. I want to know my food will start to spoil if left uneaten for a few days. That’s how I know it’s still living.
When it comes to juicing, my standards are the same.
Unlike many juice bars or retailers, Daily Juice does not high pressure process (HPP) their cold-pressed juices. HPP is the most common form of secondary juice processing. During HPP, bottles are submerged in water to kill microorganisms and extend shelf life 30-45 days.
When I stop by my local co-op and get a fresh bunch of kale, I know I need to eat it within the next few days. If someone told me I could leave it in my fridge for 30-45 days, I would easily assume something unnatural was occurring and pass on the purchase.
There are some benefits to HPP’ed juice like lower cost and longer shelf life, which can make juice more affordable and accessible. But when the option is available, I go for unprocessed, cold-pressed juice. I want the freshest, most nutrient-dense option available because I know it’s what my body craves.
Here are the top three benefits I’ve experienced since incorporating real juice into my diet:
- Curbed cravings: SIX pounds of produce go into each bottle of green juice. When a craving strikes, rather than reaching for a quick snack to munch on, I chug a bottle of Depth Charge. In those 16 ounces, my body is getting WAY more nutrients than it would in a bag of veggie chips or in a little trail mix. By the time I’m done with the bottle, the cravings are gone and my energy is boosted.
- Reduced Inflammation: When you juice, the body takes all the energy it would spend on digestion and focuses on healing itself. Not only do you abstain from foods that might irritate or inflame your gut, but your digestive tract has an opportunity to relax. Whether on a cleanse or simply replacing a meal with some juice, I notice relief from bloating and inflammation almost immediately.
- Clearer skin: I’m nearing 30, and my skin has never looked better. Not only is juice packed with nutrients, it’s also incredibly hydrating. The produce used in juice can help the body eliminate toxins that may be harmful to the skin, and it can help promote skin repair and maintenance. I don’t have an elaborate skin routine. In fact, I barely use any products on my skin, but it remains smooth, soft, and blemish free.
Today, unprocessed, cold-pressed juice is a regular part of my routine. It’s improved my health and vibrancy and reinforced the value of freshness in my diet.
For advice or coaching on incorporating juice into your diet, reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit me at the Daily Juice on Far West in Austin.
Melinda Nelson is an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and Program Manager at Daily Juice Cafe. She is passionate about real food and authentic living. You can visit Melinda at our Far West location and follow her journey at MelindaCNelson.com, on Instagram @melindacnelson, or on Facebook.
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