My mother gave up saying this a very long time ago. Much to her despair I grew up on a diet largely dominated by pizza and chocolate (don’t try this at home). When I elected to turn vegetarian at age 13, vegetarians were not as common as nowadays, and many people assumed I ate only vegetables. Nothing could be further from the truth. Until quite recently you’d be hard pushed to find a fresh fruit or vegetable in my kitchen. They would be bought sometimes with good intentions but would end up providing only visual satisfaction.
A friend suggested I get a juicer. Fresh vegetable juice is popularly considered very beneficial – as a balm for many complaints and as a general aid to wellbeing. Nowadays at the supermarket checkout I no longer hang my head in shame but have to stop myself from beaming proudly at the queue behind as my abundant greens hit the conveyor belt (neatly concealing the odd slab of chocolate underneath of course).
I’m not saying it’s changed my life, but knowing I’ve already downed my government regulation “five daily portions” before I even start work has an encouraging psychological impact on the day, regardless of the physical benefits.
It is widely thought that organic fruit and vegetables are better value nutritionally. Others say it’s nonsense. There’s an interesting page at http://www.organicconnection.net. I buy organic when I can – even if it’s all psychological, it makes me feel better.
Some say it’s not good to have too much fruit juice as opposed to vegetable juice, because it messes with the insulin levels. Others say it’s not good to mix fruit and vegetables, some say it’s good to vary the ingredients so as to avoid developing allergies, yet more say there’s no point in juicing at all. All I can say is that it makes me feel good. I quite often get up feeling groggy, but after meditating and having a fresh juice I feel as good as new.
Whatever some juicing critics may say, it’s been proven in many ways that fresh raw food retains its nutrients. Juicing just means you can digest a lot of nutrients without having to deal with a massive bulk of fibre in the process. It’s more than just vitamins and minerals though. Try it for yourself and see if you agree – drinking fresh juice feels like absorbing the very life energy of the plant.
It’s fun to experiment with different combinations – I’ve made as many disgusting discoveries as delicious ones. Apples, carrots or celery are well-known for blending well with other things, and ginger seems to make pretty much anything taste good. Garlic is not for the faint-hearted or overly sociable, but it’s fiercely good for you.
There are a lot of machines on the market. I went for the Moulinex Juicemaster Plus which worked out about $90 US. You can spend hundreds if you want to get something really durable and efficient, but this one has served me well. I’ve used it nearly every day for at least 6 months and can definitely say it’s money well spent.