What You Need to Know About Cold-Pressed Juice
Cold pressed juice has become all the rage in the last few years. You can't go to any gym, fitness class, or Yoga session without seeing someone advertising, selling, or drinking a bottle of the stuff. Heck, even Starbucks is beginning to offer cold-pressed juice! It's everywhere, and you'll find that a lot of people drink it due to the misguided belief that it's somehow healthier than other types of juice.
What is Cold-Pressed Juice?
Cold-pressed juice is juice that has been made using a special type of extractor. The extractor has a hydraulic press that crushes the produce to make the juice. The juicer doesn't use a spinning auger or a blade, but a press. This generates less heat and friction, which means less degradation of the nutrients. Cold-pressed juice may be pasteurized or unpasteurized (depending on the brand). However, the high pressure of the hydraulic press delivers the juice without the need for a spinning auger or slicing blade.
How is it Any Better?
Cold-pressed juice is better than other types of juice in two ways. First, it lasts longer. The crushing process produces less friction and heat than centrifugal or masticating juicing. Heat is the primary oxidizer of the delicate enzymes, antioxidants, and vitamins in your produce. Less heat = less oxidization = less risk of spoiling. At the same time, the cold-press juicer also has slightly higher nutritional value than other juice. Thanks to the no-heat crushing, the enzymes, vitamins, and antioxidants remain intact.
The Truth About Juice
But here's the harsh truth about juice: it's really not that good for your health! Fruits and veggies contain plenty of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and enzymes. Some of those are found in the juice, the rest in the peel and pulp. However, the raw foods also contain a lot of fiber and sugar. Fiber slows down the rate at which your body absorbs the sugar. When you turn your fruit into juice, you get all the sugar with none of the fiber.
Juice = Sugar
You see, the process of making the cold-pressed juice usually involves the removal of the soluble and insoluble fiber. For example, the "pulp" in orange juice contains a lot of fiber. If you drink "no pulp" juice, you're drinking juice without the fiber. The sugar in the juice floods your body, leading to a spike in your blood sugar levels. Without any fiber to prevent the sugar rush, you run a much higher risk of insulin sensitivity over time. Long-term overconsumption of fruit and veggie juices can be bad for your health.
Try Cold Pressed Juice with Fiber
If you don't want to give up your juicing habits, look for cold-pressed juice that still has the fiber. You NEED that fiber to counteract the effects of the sugar in the juice. Fiber will improve digestion and energy production. Make sure your cold-pressed juice has as much of the fiber from the original fruit as possible.
The Healthier Choice: Raw Foods
If you're juicing to try to get more greens and fruits in your diet, it may be time to try a new approach: just eat more greens and fruits! Raw food is always healthier in its natural form. Eating cooked and raw veggies with every meal can help you to cut back on your carb and fat intake. Having a serving or two of fruit throughout the day may be enough to suppress your appetite and cravings between meals. Juice isn't the best choice—always go with raw foods whenever possible!