With a new juice bar opening up on every corner you’d think health was all around you. Think again. Unfortunately, most juice bars are doing serious harm to your health! Here’s how:
1) Non-Organic Ingredients.
Juicing is all about getting masses of condensed nutrition. That means you get five to 20 servings (depending on the size) per drink. If the fruits and vegetables used are not organic, you are getting five to 20 times more condensed poisonous chemicals in your juice. That means your blood stream and organs now have to deal with exponentially more toxins. It’s completely the opposite effect from what you want. You don’t even want to do the math on so-called cleanse packages using these poisons. Those cleanses are made with toxic chemicals and genetically modified foods: think about that… six to eight bottles of concentrated poisons every day.
2) Bad Food Combining.
Two problems here:
- In an effort to make everything taste sweet, they put fruit into everything. That fruit rots and ferments (before you start drinking) and you never digest it. Food combining rule #1 is always have fruit on its own, never mixed with other foods and have it 20 minutes before eating anything else–never after a meal.
- It takes different enzymes to digest different foods, including types of fruit. Bad food combining creates a digestive disaster in your gut. That leads to a long list of issues from depression to IBS to diverticulitis.
3) Rotting Produce.
Juice bars often prep produce (prepare in advance). Peek over the counter next time you are in a juice bar and you’ll see a pile of oxidized, brown pre-cut apples and wilted greens (many of which will be used the next day or even several days…pretty much up until mold appears). You wouldn’t eat rotten food in your kitchen. Don’t drink rotten food just because the rotting is masked. Cold-press only juice bars are generally better, assuming they are handling things correctly in the back of the house and prepping only immediately before juicing.
4) Toxic Supplements.
Most juice bars are using toxic supplements. One I recently peeked into had a protein supplement that 1) was not organic 2) had artificial sweeteners, additives, coloring and preservatives 3) lacked the important nutritional elements you want in a protein 4) did not have highly bio-available essential amino acids and 5) contained an ingredient that is not recommended for pregnant women or people with liver issues. That was ONE product out of 30 in their kitchen. You don’t want to hear the rest of what I found.
5) Lack of Knowledge.
Did you know that activated charcoal eliminates everything in your system as it cleanses? Sounds good right? That’s what detox is all about. Not so fast. It eliminates everything, including the effects of birth control pills or any other medication. Warning labels would be helpful but, unfortunately, a lot of juice bars are just throwing ingredients together or copying whatever they find online or from other juice bars. They usually don’t have someone with thorough knowledge in house. The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Do your own research before drinking unknown products or you might find yourself with a bun in the oven you hadn’t planned on.
Conclusion: juicing is a good thing if it is done right. Here’s a checklist for you:
- Produce and supplements should be 100 percent organic, dairy-free, gluten-free, soy-free, refined-sugar free and sweetener-free.
- Cold-pressed is better than other methods of juicing (non-heat methods maintain nutrients and enzymes).
- No mixing of fruits and vegetables. Use an apple if you are doing baby steps but then move to all greens and I say that still cringing. Fruit really shouldn’t be mixed with vegetables ever, but I’ll try to be a little lenient for the masses.
- Look for cleanse programs put together with knowledge. (Your brain needs a minimum of 30g of glucose a day to function–most juice bars don’t know that and don’t design around it.)
- Ask to see the label of the protein (or any other supplement) they are using and snap a picture of it; then research any ingredient you don’t recognize.
One more tip that makes all the difference: always chew on a piece of food before you start drinking your juice or smoothie. It will activate your salivary glands and get your digestive enzymes going. You don’t want to drink five pounds of produce without preparing your body to digest it. If you bought a juice to drink later and don’t have a piece of fresh produce to chew on, keep a small packet of nuts handy. You only need two or three. Chew them well and for as long as you can and you’re all set! (This includes when you are doing an all-juice diet.)
Here’s a toast to YOU, who cares enough about your health to work on improving it. Now you’re armed with how to juice right, in and out of your kitchen!