Juicing: Boost Your Immune System to Fight Disease
According to the CDC’s 2012 data brief, more than 35% of U.S. men and women were obese in 2009–2010. Obesity has become an epidemic in the United States and it is growing larger by the day. This epidemic can be directly linked to how our culture prioritizes nutrition.
The so called “Western American Diet” has transformed into one that consists mainly of foods that contain little to no fiber and high amounts of processed carbohydrates, proteins, saturated fats, and sugars. In excessive amounts, consuming these types of food can eventually lead to serious health risks. A few of the health risks that correlate with poor nutrition practice are heart disease, cancer, Type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, and high blood pressure. In order to avoid these health consequences, one must be willing to eat a well balanced diet abundant in foods that help to prevent and protect against disease.
Recently a trend has developed known as “juicing.” Juicing is the process of extracting the liquid content from fruits and vegetables and then drinking it. In his book The Complete Book of Juicing, Michael Murray says, “Juicing is an effective and easy way to meet your daily quota for all essential vitamins, minerals, carotenes, and other valuable cancer-fighting nutrients.” Antioxidants are another key benefit from consuming concentrated vegetable/fruit juice. Antioxidants protect the body against free radicals and pro-oxidants. Murray suggests that, “One of the key benefits of fresh fruit and vegetables juices, beyond their nutritional superiority, is their rich supply of antioxidant nutrients like vitamin C and beta-carotene.” The consumption of fruits and vegetables has shown to offer significant protection against oxidative damaging diseases like cancer, heart disease, and premature aging.
Not only does juicing help to prevent and protect against disease, but it also empowers the body with energy and improves the functions of the immune system. “Juicing increases the amount of raw food we consume and supplies the body with more energy, which boosts the immune system and aids the body's cleansing process” (Lyons 2010). Murray (1992) adds that a diet in which an average of 60% of the calories ingested come from raw foods reduces the stress on the body. Consuming fruits and vegetables in a juice form makes it much easier on the digestive system, especially the small intestine, during the absorption process and results in increased energy levels. The body can utilize nutrients quicker and more efficiently because juice is a liquid and travels through the body rapidly, as opposed to whole foods which take time to digest and breakdown. Juice is a great source of water, easily absorbable protein, carbohydrates, and essential fatty acids. Americans have become too fond of the joyous taste of sugary, fatty foods and are blind to all the valuable assets that vegetables and fruits have to offer.
Juicing on a consistent diet will also assist one’s well-being by lowering blood pressure and promoting healthy weight loss. The blood-pressure-lowering effect of raw foods is most likely due to the healthier food choices, fiber, and potassium. Potassium maintenance is crucial in the body for lowering blood pressure. High sodium and low potassium in the body can cause health risks to greatly increase and can eventually lead to the development of cancer and cardiovascular disease (Murray, 1992, p.29). Most obese Americans have more sodium in their diets than potassium when actually potassium should be consumed at a much higher rate than sodium. A fiber deficient diet is also a significant factor in the development of obesity. But when prevalent, fiber can aid in weight loss. Fiber slows the eating process, induces satiety, and increases excretion of calories in feces. Juicing vegetables and fruits provide the body with adequate amounts of soluble fiber and large amounts of potassium that will help to prevent high blood pressure and lose weight.
Juicing is a great way to detoxify the human body and aid in the prevention of the chronic diseases that are running rampant in the world. There is no need to consume the excessive amounts of fats, proteins, and sugars that are so dominant in today’s society. Society is in fact promoting the destruction of the human body by offering so many terrible food options (i.e. Soda, Fast-Food, Candy advertising). Fruit & vegetable juicing provides the body with large amounts of energy, easily accessible nutrients, and potent antioxidants that aid in performance, competency, and overall health. It is a very simple process and results in a food source that is superior to supplements and other food sources. All you need is a juicer. Shove the fruits and vegetables into the juicer and juice comes out. Then drink. People have the ability to fight against chronic disease such as cancer and heart disease, and obesity, while living longer, healthier lives. One must be willing to try new things and sometimes sacrifice taste. Not every juice is going to taste great the first try, but in time it will become delicious. Foreign cultures that use plants as their main source of nourishment, instead of animal sources, have shown evidence of longer life and life expectancy. Trend or not, juicing plants can be one of the most natural ways to extend your life.
Lyons, Charlotte. (2001). Juicing 101. Date with a Dish, 65(4), 122. Retrieved October 15, 2013,
from Lexis-Nexis database.
Murray, Michael. (1992). The Complete Book of Juicing. California: Prima Publishing.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES. Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention National Center for Health Statistics. NCHS Data Brief. January 2012.
Article Categories: Food & Nutrition Science