According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), less than one-third of adults in the United States consume nine servings of fruits and vegetables a day. Did you just gasp? Yes, nine servings a day of fruits and vegetables is the magic portion. But don’t panic yet—a serving for most fruits and vegetables is a 1/2 cup to 1 cup. And juicing recipes are an easy and convenient way to consume the recommended amount.
You don’t want to skimp on servings, as plant-based foods are packed with essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and polyphenols that all have proven health benefits.
In fact, Harvard Medical School states that women who add just one serving of a green leafy vegetable every day can lower their risk for type 2 diabetes. Now, it is essential to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables to make sure you are taking full advantage of the plant world’s phytonutrient potential. If you are in a rut and consuming the same fruits and vegetables every day, the following juicing recipes may help introduce you to delicious new flavor combinations—and nutrients.
“Sufficient intake” of fruits and vegetables is associated with reduced risk of certain chronic diseases and healthy body weight maintenance. In a meta-analysis review of medical studies, researchers identified that higher consumption of fruits and vegetables is directly associated with a lower risk of all-cause mortality, particularly cardiovascular mortality.
Now that we’ve convinced you, let’s get into the nitty gritty of juicing, and some delicious juicing recipes to start you off!
Blending vs. Juicing
Wondering whether to juice or blend? Juicing is the process whereby the liquid in a vegetable or fruit is separated from the pulp. Juicing fruits and vegetables results in vibrant colors and flavors and concentrated and rich juice. The juice contains soluble fiber, vitamins, minerals, and other phytonutrients.
Juicing is most often done today in a centrifugal juice extractor that quickly grinds the flesh of the food and throws it against a fine filter, forcing the pulp away from the juice.
Newer on the market, and more expensive, are masticating juicers, or cold-press juicing machines. In these juicers, food is crushed and pressed to create juice. Some professionals believe that a masticating juicer provides more nutrients, but there is no research to back this claim.
With either of these juicers, the pulp is removed from the fruits and vegetables—and this pulp is where the majority of the insoluble fiber lives. Blending, on the other hand, breaks fruits and vegetables into fine particles but doesn’t separate the juice from the pulp/insoluble fiber. Instead of a juice, this preparation is often called a smoothie.
Blending also provides a nutrient-dense drink with dietary fiber. This can help keep you satisfied, longer. However, you may need to dilute blended vegetables and fruit with water or coconut water to give them more of a palatable texture.
Another benefit of blending vs. juicing is that you can add healthy fats like nuts, seeds, or yogurt to your preparation to boost the overall nutrient content. Smoothies are thick and sometimes fibrous, a much different consistency than juicing.
Proponents of juicing say that the phytonutrients, minerals, and vitamins in fruits and vegetables are much easier to absorb because your digestive tract doesn’t have to break down the fiber to get to the nutrients. It is also important to note that juicing recipes can require several pounds of fruits and vegetables to make a serving—so by sheer volume, you do get more nutrients per glass in a fresh juice than in a smoothie.
At the end of the day, both juicing and blending can help you reach your daily target for fruit and vegetable consumption. Just be mindful of the sugar content in many fresh juices that rely solely on fruits or high-sugar vegetables. Try using a combination of low-sugar vegetables like celery, cucumber, and spinach, along with the fruit to create a lower-sugar, nutrient-balanced juice recipe.
5 Health Benefits of Juicing
It is believed that juicing provides a high-level and density of nutrients while giving the digestive system a rest. This is based on the idea that without the gut having to process fiber, the nutrients are better absorbed by our body.
A single serving from a juicing recipe may contain more fruits and vegetables than you could eat at one sitting, without causing digestive distress from the high levels of dietary fiber. For example, to make 8 ounces of carrot juice, you will likely need between 1 1/4 pounds to 1 1/2 pounds of carrots—eating that many carrots at one time would be difficult, if not impossible.
Let’s look at the science-backed health benefits of juicing.
1. Reduced Risk of Stroke
According to The Whole U at the University of Washington, consuming 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables a day decreases your risk of stroke by 26% and dramatically reduces your risk from dying from cardiovascular disease. In this report, the author of the study recommends limiting the fruit content to one or two servings of fruit (1/2 cup to 1 cup) per drink to avoid excess sugar in your diet.
2. Delaying Onset of Alzheimer’s Disease
A study from the Vanderbilt Center for Health Services Research at Vanderbilt School of Medicine evaluated whether drinking fruit and vegetable juices high in polyphenols decreased the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. What the researchers discovered is that drinking fruit and vegetable juice at least three times a week may play an important role in delaying the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
The authors of the study specifically note that this was particularly evident for adults in a high-risk group that were also sedentary. They urge further research and indicate that fruit and vegetable juices may play a role in future avenues to prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
3. Reduce Risk of Breast Cancer
According to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, a diet rich in carrots reduced the risk of breast cancer between 40 and 60%. Beta-carotene seems to play the most significant role against estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer. Carrot juice may not just protect you from breast cancer, but Harvard Medical School indicates it may also help during breast cancer treatment by reducing oxidative stress.
4. Higher Vitamin C Content Than Blending
According to a study published in Preventative Nutrition and Food Science, vitamin C content is higher in drinks that are juiced than those that are blended. Researchers note that apples, pears, and mandarin oranges are particularly prone to changes in nutrient and antioxidant levels based on whether they are juiced or blended.
5. Prevent Depression
In a peer-reviewed analysis, researchers from Peru have identified that individuals who consume a high level of fruits and/or vegetables have lower depression symptoms. They noted that less than 5% of the individuals participating in the review consumed the World Health Organization’s daily recommended amounts. The authors of the study urge the development of strategies to promote fruit and vegetable consumption as a potential for overall mental health.
A Clinical Study to Watch
In an exciting new study from the University of North Carolina, researchers are prescribing locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables to a control group of low-income, high-risk patients of The UNC Family Medicine Center. This study provides fresh fruits and vegetables at no cost, along with nutrition education programs. Over the course of the study, researchers will measure and track dietary changes, a variety of health markers, and the impact the program has on local farmers.
3 Juicing Recipes for Weight Loss
The Internet is loaded with information on juicing recipes for weight loss. Sometimes, juicing recipes are used as part of a multi-day or a week-long juice fast. Caution needs to be taken before undergoing any dramatic change in dieting, especially with juicing. Be sure to talk to your doctor before starting a juice fast.
You don’t have to go on a juice fast to lose weight. Adding healthy, fresh juice to your diet can give you a boost of nutrients, keep you satisfied, and help your body rid itself of toxins. The important thing when you are using juicing recipes for weight loss is to fuel up with lower sugar fruits and vegetables. Good options are leafy greens, berries, cucumbers, celery, and even tomatoes.
If you want to use juice as a meal replacement, blending may be a better solution because you can add a booster like chia seeds, flaxseeds, whey protein powder, or even a tablespoon of almond butter to round out your nutritional needs.
Apple, Carrot, Orange, and Ginger Juice
From the Peach Kitchen, comes this delicious and antioxidant-packed, immunity-boosting Apple, Carrot, Orange, and Ginger Juice recipe. The addition of ginger gives this juicing recipe a powerful punch of anti-inflammatories and its excellent warming flavor.
Kale, Lettuce, Parsley, and Turmeric Juice
This Green Juice for Weight Loss recipe from Reboot with Joe is a healthy combination of leafy greens including kale, romaine lettuce, and two kinds of parsley partnered with fresh ginger, turmeric, and even chilis. To make it palatable, it also contains pineapple, celery, and lemon juice.
Apple, Cucumber, Spinach, and Carrot Juice
This is an interesting juicing recipe that contains a variety of leafy greens, fruits, carrots, and even garlic. From University Health News Daily, this Carrot, Celery, and Cucumber Revitalizer juicing recipe is rich in a variety of vitamins, minerals, and other phytonutrients to nourish your body and aid in the release of toxins.
3 Juicing Recipes for Energy
If you have a dip in energy mid-afternoon, you aren’t alone. These juicing recipes contain dietary fiber and natural sugars to help boost energy levels while providing much-needed nutrients.
Beets, Carrots, Apple, Cucumber, and Ginger Juice
Carrot, Lemon, Ginger, and Maple Syrup
If you are looking for a healthy juice recipe to give you a boost of energy, this one is likely to please. From The First Mess comes this delicious Carrot Ginger Lemonade that uses your countertop blender instead of a masticating juicer or centrifugal juice extractor, and a fine-mesh strainer to get rid of the pulp.
Watermelon, Mint, and Ginger
The flavors of summer come through strong in this delicious Watermelon & Ginger Juice recipe. Fresh mint and ginger give this juice a punch of flavor, and watermelon brings more to the juice than just sweetness. In fact, watermelon has the highest concentration of lycopene of any fruit or vegetable.
3 Smoothies Recipes for Weight Gain
Juicing may not provide enough calories to help you gain weight without adding a ton of sugar to your diet. Instead of juicing for weight gain, blending ingredients into a smoothie may be a better solution. In a smoothie, you can add healthy fats through nuts, seeds, and even full-fat dairy without adding too much sugar to your diet.
Bananas, Sunflower Seed Butter, Dates, Almond Milk, and Cacao
This Protein-Packed Sunbutter Smoothie may help you gain weight when consumed regularly. The bananas, sunbutter, dates, cacao powder, and almond milk are high in calories and also provide extraordinary health benefits. This smoothie is rich in iron, potassium, tryptophan, dietary fiber, and a variety of vitamins.
Matcha, Banana, Avocado, Spinach, Pineapple, and Coconut Milk
This is definitely The Ultimate Green Smoothie. It is loaded with healthy fats from coconut milk and avocado, while the banana and pineapple add sweetness and healthy calories. But the real difference maker here is the matcha green tea powder. Together, these ingredients create a smoothie recipe loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.
Almond Butter, Cauliflower, Blueberries, Avocado
This healthy smoothie recipe was created to help the body and mind relax. It does contain some high-calorie ingredients including almond butter and avocado, which also bring a ton of healthy fats to the recipe. In this Stress-Relieving Lavender Smoothie the antioxidants, protein, and healthy fats are the stars of the recipe and may help you reach your goal weight.
3 Juicing Recipes for High Blood Pressure
According to the World Health Organization, more than one in five adults have elevated blood pressure. High blood pressure is a condition directly responsible for approximately half of all deaths from stroke and heart disease. WHO also notes that eating five servings a day of fruits and vegetables can help minimize the risk of developing high blood pressure.
Beets, Ginger, and Apple Juice
Do you need something delicious, light, and packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory power? Then this simple Beetroot Juice Ice Cube recipe is a perfect solution. Beets are rich in nitrates which help to improve blood flow and lower systolic blood pressure. The pectin in the apples helps the body eliminate impurities and toxins while adding sweetness and vitamins.
Beets, Apple, Cucumber, Celery, and Vinegar
Red Apple Detox Juice is a hydrating, alkalizing, and fiber-rich juice recipe that can help you eliminate toxins and flush out waste. Beets pack a punch of health benefits as they help fight inflammation, strengthen the heart, support digestion, and contribute to improved physical and mental performance. The addition of apple cider vinegar gives this recipe a boost of friendly bacteria for gut health.
Raspberries, Blueberries, Blackberries, and Apples
Simple, clean, and delicious, this Berry Burst Juice from The Black Peppercorn puts antioxidants at centerstage. In a study published in the International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, researchers have found daily blueberry consumption for eight weeks results in lower blood pressure and less arterial stiffness. The authors of the study point to the extraordinary concentration of polyphenols in blueberries.
3 Juicing Recipes for Kids
An interesting collaborative study from researchers at Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Brown University Medical School have found an association between higher fruit intake and a lower risk of breast cancer. The authors of this study make special note that food choices during adolescence are particularly important.
Eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables during childhood and adolescence isn’t just crucial for immediate nutrition. Consuming healthy foods from a young age dramatically impacts future eating habits and overall wellness. In fact, a study from the Minneapolis Heart Institute found that higher consumption of fruits and vegetables as a child is related to heart health 20 years later. The lead author of the study encourages healthy eating habits early to keep the heart robust for years to come.
Carrots, Apples, Cucumber, and Ginger Juice
This is an excellent and tasty hidden-veggie juice recipe for the picky eaters in your family. This Orange-less Orange Juice packs beta-carotene, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, and dietary fiber in a delightfully sweet and satisfying juice. For kids, you could thin this down just a touch with natural sparkling water for extra appeal.
Beets, Oranges, Carrots, Apples, Cucumber, and Celery Juice
If you have adolescents or teens who are struggling with acne or other skin conditions, Glowing Skin Juice from the Simple Vegan Blog may help. This nutrient-dense drink is filled with a variety of vitamins, minerals, and other phytonutrients and sweet enough for even picky eaters.
Carrots, Oranges, and Ginger Juice
There is something magical that happens when these three simple ingredients are juiced together—they create the childhood favorite—Creamsicle in a healthy drink. This Orange Creamsicle Juice recipe from Redefined Mom is loaded with vitamin C, beta-carotene, and antioxidants. Enjoy it to boost the immune system or as a healthy dessert or after-school snack.
3 Juicing Recipes for Seniors
As we age, our nutritional needs change. More calories and nutrients are necessary, but it can be difficult, especially for those living on their own, to get the foods they need. Many seniors in the United States fight nutritional deficiencies. A healthy diet replete with ample fruits and vegetables can help seniors shore up any nutritional gaps. One of the benefits of juicing is that the fruits and vegetables are broken down and easier to digest.
Brain-Boosting Cherry Juice
Cherries are loaded with vitamins and antioxidants that fight inflammation. One of cherries most brain-boosting antioxidants is anthocyanin, a phytonutrient in many red-fleshed or blue-fleshed fruits and vegetables including elderberries, strawberries, blackcurrants, and blood oranges.
Research indicates that anthocyanin is linked to enhanced memory and may help prevent age-related cognitive decline, making cherry juice an outstanding juice recipe for seniors. This healthy Homemade Cherry Juice from Bless This Mess requires a steam juicer and some time. If you want to reap all the health benefits without investing in a steam juicer, cherries are a fantastic addition to blended juices and smoothie recipes.
Spinach, Oranges, Celery, and Ginger
Many seniors struggle with a compromised immune system. In order to be able to fight off harmful bacteria, viruses, and environmental influences, it is vital that they consume fruits and vegetables packed with vitamins and minerals to support healthy immune system functioning.
This delicious green Immune Booster Juice from Simple Vegan Blog is a gorgeous, vibrant green color, with just a hint of sweetness from the oranges. And it’s packed with vitamin C and iron to boost your immune system so you are equipped to fight off illnesses caused by bacteria and viruses.
Blueberries, Coconut Oil, Flaxseed, Chia Seeds, Banana
This is a blended juice that has added boosters in the form of flaxseeds, chia seeds, and coconut oil. It’s a perfect juice recipe for seniors or anyone who needs to up their brain power. From the Mouthwatering Vegan Recipes, this Super Raw Brain Juice is ideal for promoting brain health and energy.
Bonus: 2 Green Juice Recipes
Kale, Swiss Chard, Cucumber, Apple, and Celery Juice
Green smoothies and juices are all the rage because they make it easier to incorporate leafy greens into our diet. Our Green Light Go Weight-Loss Juice is low in calories, low in fat, and high in dietary fiber. It will fill you up, keep you satisfied, and help to release toxins and purify your blood.
Pineapple, Cucumbers, Oranges, Celery and Ginger Juice
This green juice recipe gets its color from the cucumber and the celery—there are no leafy greens here. Instead, Green Juice for Weight Loss from Simple Vegan Blog relies on the balanced combination of fruit and vegetables to give this recipe its nutrient profile. This is a lighter juice that is packed with flavor and rich in a variety of vitamins, minerals, and other phytonutrients.