We are busy, we do not have time to cook and we eat very little vegetables. These are the usual thoughts when we begin to evaluate the health of our diet.
In this situation, the pure whole juices come to rescue us with a large number of concentrated vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial bioactive substances. It is also easy to comply with the daily dose of vitamins with juice: a glass of berry juice is equivalent to about 500-600 grams of berries.
The juice is easy to digest, due to this, the body absorbs vitamins and mineral substances more effectively. The natural juice contains 10-16% carbohydrates, in addition to organic acids, nitrogen compounds, minerals, vitamins, tannins, pigments, essential oils and, of course, water.
The composition of the juice depends more on the raw material and on its maturity. Unfortunately, every summer is different. The amount of sun and rain varies, so the taste of the juice can also vary.
What is the difference between concentrated juice and whole juice?
Most commercially available juices are made from concentrate. To achieve this, approximately 50% of the juice water evaporates. Later, during packaging, the same amount of water is added back to the juice. Most of the aroma and flavor are restored, but a large amount of vitamins has disappeared during the process. Often, a variety of enzymes are added to the raw material to increase the productivity of the juice, which can affect the balance in the body.
Whole juice is obtained by cold pressing. To ensure the preservation of valuable substances and vitamins for the body, the juice is processed as little as possible. In addition to nutrients, minimal handling also guarantees the best color, smell, and taste. In this juice, there is also a lot of pulp, which precipitates at the bottom of the bottle. Stir it before drinking it.
The odor and taste compounds together with the organic compounds in the juices stimulate digestive functions and digestive peristalsis, so it is recommended to provide juice to children with low appetite half an hour before meals or to people with poor digestion. Cold pressed juice is best for people who are suffering from or recovering from a disease, or who need extra nutrients and vitamins to regain their vitality.
1. Fibers are good friends with bacteria.
In addition to vitamins and minerals, fibers are also found in whole juice, some of which are water soluble and others not. The former inhibits the absorption of sugars, while the latter promotes the development of microorganisms, which in turn produce vitamins (B, A and K) and short chain fatty acids.
It is increasingly important to consider the bacterial combinations known as the microbiome, which do well to the metabolism and to our health in general. It is believed that people with different bacterial colonies react differently to carbohydrate-rich foods.
The so-called “economic” bacteria consume the total amount of carbohydrates, the metabolism is lower and the weight increases. By contrast, the so-called free bacteria consume only a part of the carbohydrates, which leaves the rest for the body and the weight remains under control.
It is true that, to date, such studies have only been done in mice. From the point of view of survival and continuation of the species, it is good to use all the available energy units, the waste is not sustainable. In addition to affecting our weight, bacteria also participate in the immune defense, cholesterol balance, blood synthesis (heme) and other processes, many of which are still being studied.
2. Potassium balances blood pressure and supports muscles.
Whole natural juices contain a large number of minerals such as potassium, which is an important sodium balancer. Salt is added to most prepared foods, bread, cheese, sausages, tomato sauce, and others. In addition, people often love “overestimating” their own foods. However, excess salt in the body increases blood pressure and, therefore, the risk of heart disease.
Potassium deficiency occurs in people whose menu is dominated by animal sources and is low in vegetables, drinking a lot of coffee, consuming a lot of sugar and alcohol, or suffering from prolonged stress. The lack of potassium in the diet can affect the decrease in muscle tone and slow down recovery after exercise.
Potassium also participates in the metabolism of carbohydrates, which ensures the supply of energy to the entire body. In the case of severe potassium deficiencies, there is a risk of developing an arrhythmia, since much of the potassium is also discharged from the body during diarrhea.
3. Flavonoids give complexion.
Flavonoids or plant pigments give color to berries and fruits: the darker the fruit, the more abundant they are. It has been found that flavonoids have a series of beneficial properties, from the protection of cells and the elimination of harmful substances, which help to fight tumors, inflammations, viruses, and allergies until the anti-aging effect.
This knowledge allows us to recommend the consumption of five servings of vegetables, fruits, and berries every day, and combine them to represent all the colors of the rainbow.
In this way, we give our body all the necessary bioactive substances, precursors of vitamins and minerals. The good news is that flavonoids are resistant to heat, light pasteurization does not change its effect. In addition, they also help maintain other vitamins found in fruits and berries.
Berries rich in flavonoids, such as black currants, blueberries, cowberries, cranberries and the like, and the juices that are obtained from them give our body the strength to resist viral diseases and fatigue.
4. Vitamin C strengthens blood vessels and improves mood.
Berries, especially wild berries, contain a large number of flavonoids and increase our defenses. The best ones are dark red and purple berries such as blueberries, black currant, and cranberries. The anthocyanins contained in these berries are bioactive components that are part of the group of flavonoids and function as effective antioxidants in the body. They increase the level of vitamin C in the cells, which in turn strengthens the walls of the blood vessels.
The strong walls of the blood vessels are elastic and healthy, do not accumulate cholesterol plaque or cause inflammation, varicose veins or lateral veins (especially in the legs and thighs). The latter is caused by blockages in the blood flow, such as increased tension in the blood vessels of the lower part of the body during pregnancy.
Over the years, pregnant women have been suggested to eat red berries or drink berry juice, so the legs can also remain beautiful. Unfortunately, heritage and lifestyle (lack of movement) also play a role.
We know the important role of vitamin C in the immune system, but not so much its important role in regulating our mood. That is, the synthesis of serotonin and other signalling molecules is altered in the absence of vitamin C. This may also be the reason why some people during the spring, when vitamin C levels in the body are generally low, feel notoriously sad despite the long days and the most abundant sun.
5. Antioxidants in the best natural environment.
Antioxidants have also been compared and tested to find the most powerful of them using the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) method. The greater the capacity to capture, neutralize and eliminate harmful oxygen radicals (oxidants), the higher the ORAC score.
In this table, the second place belongs to the wild blueberry, the fifth to the wild cranberry and the tenth place to the blackcurrant. Unfortunately, not all our forest and garden berries are there, which would be worth a place among the top ten.
In addition, it is worthwhile to evaluate the antioxidants found in berries, which are always in the best natural, balanced and proportioned environment. There will never be any risk of overeating or overdose, perhaps with one exception: carotenoids.
Too many carotenoids can make the skin look more yellowish. This is not bad in itself, as it protects the skin from the damaging effects of sunburn, but excess carotenoids also reduce fertility.
The effect of antioxidants is more powerful the more they are consumed together. Most diseases are caused by the lack of nutrients that help counteract our daily stressors. If there are no deposits in the body to combat the overwhelming presence of free radicals, we can easily detect diseases and our immune system gives up. The greater the stress, the more we need compressed or concentrated nutrients, such as whole juice.
You should drink at least one glass of whole berry juice for breakfast or between your meals. Berry juices are not part of the sweet juices and can also be recommended for people who follow a diet low in sugar.
Fruit juices contain considerably more sugars and should be mixed with vegetable juices. If you are recovering from an illness or have a small number of vegetables and fruits on your food table, you can definitely drink two to three glasses of whole juice per day.