Juicing – the process of extracting the juices of fresh, whole fruits and vegetables to make a hearty, healthy drink – has recently become a popular way to get your “apple a day.” If eating fruits and veggies isn’t your thing, juicing may be the perfect way to introduce them into your diet.

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Juicing2What do you use? 

For the greatest health benefits, leafy greens like spinach or bitter vegetables like beets are juiced alongside fruit for a sweeter taste. “Don’t be afraid of beets. They’re so good for you,” says juicing expert Lauren Ledford. “I would recommend staying away from fruit as much as you can. Often when people think of juicing they throw two apples in because it’s sweet and tastes good, but there are other ways to achieve sweetness without that much sugar. Use pineapple instead because the flavor goes farther and the nutritional value is amazing,” Ledford says.


What can it do for me?

If you decide to join in on juicing, you might reap some seriously positive health benefits. “When you juice, you’re not only feeding your body, you’re also feeding your mind,” Ledford says. It’s believed that the nutrients from juicing can protect against cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and even certain types of cancer.

While no scientific evidence confirms these benefits currently, there’s no doubt that juicing is better than no fruits and vegetables at all. Vegetables and fruits are vital to a healthy life and can help ward off heart disease, stroke, cancer, and diverticulitis. To keep the doctor away, strive for five to thirteen servings a day (2.5 to 6.5 cups), depending on your caloric intake. It should be understood, though, that while juicing retains most of the vitamins, minerals, and plant chemicals found in the whole fruit or vegetable, fiber and other nutrients are lost during the juicing process.