Juicing vs. Blending: A Guide for Your Inner Nutritionista

smoothieNowadays, you can’t swing a yoga tote without knocking over five juice and smoothie stands. The secret is out! Juicing and blending are all the rage but unlike most trends, these are here to stay. But to juice or to blend? Both are so delicious and so incredibly healthy – which one is best? What’s a girl to do? Before giving up on both and drowning your sorrows in a carton of coconut ice cream, let me explain why juicing and blending are both awesome and then I’ll tell you my own personal fave!

Juicing
Juicing is the process in which water and nutrients are extracted from fruits and vegetables while insoluble fiber is removed. What you have left over is like pure liquid gold – delicious naturally flavored water that’s rich in vitamins, minerals, chlorophyll and other phytronutrients which pass directly into the bloodstream providing instant nourishment at the cellular level! The downside is that juicing can be a bit expensive compared to blending because it requires handfuls of fruits and veggies just to get one glamorous glass and of course you lose the fiber in the process. Juicing can also cause blood sugar levels to rapidly spike, particularly if you’re juicing mostly fruits (which is why I tell my clients to juice mainly vegetables and to flavor with fruit). Try to drink a fresh glass at least every other morning and be sure to drink it right away since light and air will break down the juice’s valuable nutrients.

juiceBlending
Blending on the other hand uses up the entire fruit or vegetable—skin and all—meaning that you’re retaining all the fiber. So unlike juicing, a blended smoothie is much more filling. And that’s not a bad thing! Dietary fiber is vital to good health and optimal nutrition. The blending process even helps to mechanically break apart the fiber making it easier to digest than eating whole and sparing you of the chewing process.  This makes smoothies an excellent snack or meal replacement option, particularly since blending is typically faster than juicing. The downside however is that there’s a limit to how much you can cram into your stomach or Vitamix so fiber aside, you’re getting less nutritional bang for your buck in a single serving of smoothie compared with juice.

And the winner is…
If I had to choose a favorite between the two, it would be juicing and here’s why. By removing the fiber, we lighten our digestive load meaning our guts don’t have to work as hard to break down the food or absorb nutrients, leaving the body more time and energy to spend on repair. This is particularly helpful for those of us (like me!) with stomach diseases or disorders that inhibit the digestion of fiber (ahem, IBS). And when you consider how quickly nutrients are absorbed through juice, juicing can even replace supplementation for some, helping to save a little extra money. Plus juicing is hella hydrating! But hands down the best way to achieve vibrant health is to incorporate both juices and smoothies into your daily routine so they’re both winners in my book. I’m sure we can all raise a glass to that. Cheers!

HeadshotBeata Rydyger, BSc, RHN, is a Holistic Nutritionist, Health Writer, and Natural beauty expert. Find more of her below: 

Facebook: She Lives Clean
Twitter: @shelivesclean
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