If you have ever squeezed an orange for its juice and then drank orange juice from the supermarket, you will know what I mean. Of course, all juices start with the fresh fruit and vegetables, but it is the way that these are processed that determines the level of nutrition and health benefits.
Most shop-bought juices (unless they are cold-pressed) have gone through a long process of high-speed centrifuging, that involves heat and oxidation. This causes the breakdown of valuable enzymes and the loss of many nutrients. To be able to store the juice for longer, most juices are then pasteurised, mildly heated to destroy bacteria and other impurities, and prolong the shelf-life.
Sometimes this pasteurised juice is then further reduced to a concentrate, by removing a lot of the water content. Easy to store and easy to transport, but not exactly ‘juice’ I would say. Water is added later again, including ‘natural’ colouring and flavouring, plus synthetic vitamins and minerals. Always, always check the label, or even better, buy cold-pressed juice!
Cold-pressed juice starts with fresh vegetables and fruit as well of course, but that is the only similarity with most shop-bought juices. The juicing process is totally different. The juice is extracted by a hydraulic press, that is compressing the vegetables and fruits between two plates, at high pressure. Because there is no heat or oxygen involved, almost 100% of all enzymes, vitamin, minerals, and other nutrients, will be preserved.
Because cold-pressed juice does not contain any fibre pulp, it is very easy to digest. The body doesn’t have to break down the fibre and the nutrients are ready to be absorbed.
This is why cold-pressed juice is so good to give your digestive system a rest every now and then. And the abundance of nutrients in it will support the body’s detoxification process, give you energy, help your immune system and improve overall health.