There are many methods of juicing, from squeezing fruit by hand to wide-scale extraction with industrial equipment. Juicing is generally the preferred method of consuming large amounts of produce quickly and is often completed with a household appliance called a juicer, which may be as simple as a cone upon which fruit is mashed or as sophisticated as a variable-speed, motor-driven device. It may also refer to the act of extracting and then drinking juice or those who extract the juice. Juicing is different from buying juice in the supermarket because it is focuses on fresh pressed fruits and vegetables. Residential juicing is often practiced for dietary reasons or as a form of alternative medicine. Becoming first popular in the early 1990’s, interests in juicing has soared in the last decade due to a number of books, videos, and claims, as well as, the quick dissemination due to the Internet. Films such as Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, "Food Matters", and "Hungry for Change" has increased the sales of juicers.
Juicing tools have been used throughout history. Manual devices include barrel-shaped presses, hand-operated grinders, and inverted cones upon which fruit is mashed and twisted. Modern juicers are powered by electric motors generating from 200 to 1000 or more watts. There are several types of electric juicers: masticating, centrifugal, and triturating juicers. These variations are defined by the means of extracting the juice.
- Masticating - utilizes a single gear driven by a motor; slower operation; kneads and grinds items placed in a chute
- Centrifugal - utilizes a spinning blade that resembles a grated basket; faster operation; quickly grinds items and discards pulp in a receptacle
- Triturating - utilizes twin gears; slower operation; often has multiple uses
Juice therapy should not be confused with traditional fasting even though it is often called juice "fasting". To clarify, juicers do not abstain from eating but consume only raw juice for primary caloric intake. Raw plants hold nutrients that are destroyed through heat techniques including pasteurization, which is a common practice in store-bought juice.
Though pure, raw juice contains the essential vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients found in the whole fruit, it loses the fiber from the skins and peels.
Juicing may not be the best way to extract all of the nutritional value from fruits and vegetables. According to Uckoo, when juiced grapefruit was compared with blended, the latter was superior. Smoothies, which are the blending of fruit into juice, not the extraction, leave pulp and seeds within the drink leading to better nutrition. Smoothies may also be a better alternative to juicing because of the high expense of juicing.
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- Claire Reilly (November 29, 2011). "Give it some juice: Breville doubles juicer sales following health doco". Current.com.au.
- "Juicing". American Cancer Society. November 2008. Retrieved August 2013.
- Uckoo, R. M., Jayaprakasha, G. K., Balasubramaniam, V. M., & Patil, B. S. (2012). Grapefruit (Citrus paradisi Macfad) Phytochemicals Composition Is Modulated by Household Processing Techniques. Journal of Food Science, 77(9), C921-C926. doi:10.1111/j.1750-3841.2012.02865.x
- Ruxton, C. H. S. "Smoothies: One Portion Or Two?." Nutrition Bulletin 33.2 (2008): 129-132. Academic Search Premier. Web. 8 Apr. 2014.