Juicing: Drink Your Fruits and VeggiesSep 25, 2014
Juicing, blending and mixing: there are many ways to consume healthy food. Registered dietitian Kary Woodruff reveals which of these is most beneficial for your health. She gives advice for how you can drink your fruits and veggies and still retain all of their nutrients.
Interviewer: So, juicing, is it really better than nothing, or should you be actually eating the fruits and vegetables raw? We're talking with Kary Woodruff, registered dietician with the University of Utah and she's going to tell us all about that today on The Scope.
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Interviewer: So Kary, I am a big believer of fruits and veggies in my diet but I am also a really big believer in the fact that my diet needs to taste good and some of the vegetables just don't taste good to me. And so, I choose to just blend it all up and if I don't see it, I can just chug it all down. Am I doing it right? Am I still good?
Kary: Yeah, it is, as you identified, it is probably better to eat the whole fruit and the whole vegetable. That being said, juicing would be a better option than not getting any fruits and vegetables at all.
Kary: And I would say not all juices are created equally. So there's some ways of juicing fruits and vegetables in a way that retains the pulp.
Interviewer: Oh, okay.
Kary: Some of the more pricey juicers. They are more expensive, but they do give us more benefits like the Blendtecs or the Vitamix, because they actually retain the whole fruit and vegetable. They don't remove the pulp.
Kary: Which is the really nutritious part of the fruit and vegetable.
Interviewer: So it's a . . .
Kary: So if we can retain the whole food, and not remove the pulp, then we'll be retaining more nutrients.
Interviewer: Okay. Is that seeds, everything, that's included as well, right? So like an apple?
Interviewer: Okay. When I juice my orange, obviously the juice of it comes out, but the pulp of it still stays there because I'm juicing it by hand. From what you've just said, that's not really healthy then, is it? Or it's not as healthy.
Kary: It's not as healthy, yeah, because you're losing some of the fiber. And so when we eat foods with fiber, like the whole orange, it'll actually last longer versus something that has the fiber removed we'll feel energy pretty quickly. But then we actually feel hungry again pretty soon thereafter.
Interviewer: All the juice cleanses then out there, do you recommend those?
Kary: I do. Yeah, again, I would try and juice it in a way that's retaining the whole fruit and vegetables.
Kary: And so they're juicing in a way that's retaining the whole form of the vegetable and fruit then that would be a better option.
Interviewer: Gotcha. Okay. But most of them, from what I've seen, are just the juice and that's, so stay away from that if you can.
Kary: Yeah, I would rather see people eat fruits and vegetables.
Interviewer: Okay. And then are there any kinds of fruits and veggies that are just, not only taste good together, but can really benefit your health when you put them all into a blender and you mix them all up?
Kary: Yeah, I mean I think really the more the better. There are some nutrients that do tend to help the absorption of other nutrients. But really when we see when we get a good combination of fruits and vegetables we tend to see good absorption, and good nutrient utilization. So I wouldn't get too caught up in trying to focus on two particular fruits and vegetables, and just to get a variety.
Interviewer: Okay. And then I also, there's this new trend where, when you're juicing something, when you're making a smoothie or a fruit juice or a veggie juice, they're putting in like proteins and whey and all these other products. Is that okay?
Kary: Well it depends on what the purpose of the juice is. So if it's a meal, if it's going to be a meal replacement, then there should be some protein with it.
Interviewer: Gotcha. That's okay then, to do juice as a meal.
Kary: Yeah, I mean I'd rather, again I'd rather see someone eat the fruits and vegetables and get a food source of protein, but I do understand that sometime there's a convenience factor to being able to make it and have it on the run. And so there's that, again I think when we can juice it with something that will retain the whole fruit, the whole vegetable, and then getting some protein with it. So whether someone uses a protein powder, or they could actually use a food source of protein like some Greek yoghurt, or some milk, or soymilk, could be good ways of integrating in some protein.
Interviewer: Gotcha. So what I'm hearing is its fine. It's fine to juice your fruits and veggies. It's okay.
Kary: It is. You have to make sure you're also eating them as well.
Interviewer: Okay. Is there a reason why juicing would not be good for you?
Kary: Well, it would be like if you are going to Jamba Juice and getting these extra-large Jamba Juices that have added juices for sweetness. And that's going to be simply added sugar. That's really what that translates to. And then what we see that happens with that is those can be pretty high in calories, high in the sugars, and those forms won't be healthy.
Interviewer: Gotcha. All right. So juice all you want, just make sure that the raw, the source material of the juice is still there and don't add anything bad that can cause harm to your health in the juice.
Kary: Yeah, like added sugar.
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