Thursday, February 21, 2008
Drinking Healthy - Fresh Juice
Ever since I found a great fresh fruit and vegetable market (A. Russo's, Watertown, MA), I am starting to get back into making my own fresh juice. I would love to have a large kitchen so I could keep my juicer out all the time, but it's probably just as well to get everything out and have a special treat once in a while (even natural fruit and vegetable juice has a high amount of sugar, with no fiber). My favorite juice is Beet - Apple - Carrot. By the way, my 3 year-old and 18-month old love it! We water it down a little though, about 1/2 juice and 1/2 water.
I have the Omega juicer, which I've used for fruit/vegetable juice and for grinding nut or seed -butters (such as almond, sunflower seed and pumpkin seed butter). It has worked well, it's fairly easy to clean, and powerful. However, you have to cut the fruit/vegetables into slices that will go into the machine, so this sometimes takes a few extra minutes.
Juice is a great way to transition to eliminating soft drinks and diet coke/pepsi (which in addition to being a health risk will ironically just cause you to gain weight). If you don't have time to make your own juice and must buy commercial juice, make sure it is 100% Juice. Try mixing a little Sparkling water, like San Pellegrino, in with the juice.
Some people drink soft drinks just to be drinking something. Try getting a water bottle (preferably a hard plastic), and fill up on fresh, filtered water all day. I've read even drinking bottled water is sometimes not so good, because the water is bottled in soft plastic containers that may leak chemicals into the water if exposed to extreme temperatures.
If you are just drinking diet coke for the caffeine or refreshing pick-up, I think it would be better to drink some unsweetened iced green tea mixed with sparkling water. At least it's all natural - and real! Plus, green tea does have some nutritional value and health benefits. Octavia tea is very good.
I used to buy apple juice for my kids and water it down, but now I don't even buy apple juice. They are used to drinking water all day, and I make sure their water bottles are full. It's great to get them in the habit early of drinking lots of water. I can't believe how much I'm saving on my grocery bill by drinking healthy - no juice, beer or wine, coffee, soda - so I can afford to buy treats such as tea, Teeccino, or sparkling water once in a while.