Friday, November 14, 2014

The ABCs of Juicing

My journey to juicing every night started after I took my daughter to see our nurse practitioner who specializes in Integrative Medicine suggested that we begin giving our daughter a cocktail of vitamins and minerals to help her Sensory Processing Disorder Symptoms.  Anyway, while any other child would greatly love have an extra smoothie or yogurt in their day, adding another meal to my daughter's routine takes a lot of creativity to introduce in a way that is fun and exciting.  Simultaneously, I had recently been participating in a smoothie and juicing challenge in a wellness board on Facebook.  I married the two opportunities together and now my kids and I juice every night together.    I wanted to complete a blog entry about how to start.  I am going to try to answer the questions I asked the Food and Wellness Board last month as I began this journey.  I am still a tried and true beginning juicer and always value the advice of my friends that are advanced juicers.  Anyway, here is how it works for me:

Buy a Quality Juicer

The first thing I would advise is finding a quality juicer. I would recommend the following brands:
Jack LaLanne

Make Juicing Affordable

My juicing routine is pretty standard.  Every week we purchase a combination of the following:

English Cucumbers

  • I purchase them at Aldi's, our local Farmer's Markets and Trader Joe's.  Trader Joe's has really affordable packaged Granny Smith apples and English Peppers for about $3.00
  • I purchase English Cucumbers (mini cucumbers) as way to manage the amount of cucumbers I put in my juice.  A package of English Cucumbers from Trader Joe's comes in a pack of 5 so in my head I am able to ration one mini cucumber a day for almost a week
  • Many of Aldi's fruit is organic and on sale throughout the week.  If you keep an eye on their produce sales, you could get some great deals and a weeks worth of fruits and veggies for juicing.
  • Farmers Markets are a great place to purchase seasonal veggies for your juicing routine.  I can often purchase bunches of organic collard greens, carrots and beets at my local farmer's market for $1.50-$2.00.  Plus it's a great way to get your kids to the market with you to learn more about wear food comes from.

Make It Routine

Whenever I am starting a new habit, I have to make it a routine.  I am fairly sure this comes from teaching children with visual impairments over the course of the last eight years but it makes sense to me.  It adds meaning to my day.  So after trying to juice in the morning and feeling rushed, I decided juicing was a more meaningful and fulfilling habit for me to have in the evening.  The kids and I save our daily vitamins, probiotic and supplements for our nightly juices.  This was the best choice for us since I work full time and mornings are usually rushed.  It's kind of our "wellness routine."

Use the Pulp In Other Recipes!

One of the first questions I asked was wasting all the great fiber and skin that comes from those fruits and veggies!  Never fear, you can use those amazing pulp particles in other recipes! Below are some photos from the homemade hummus I made out of juice pulp.  The added pulp gave my hummus and extra citrus zest!  It was great!

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