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Health and Wellness

Hate veggies? Just juice it

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Plant foods derive energy from the sun and are naturally laden with vitamins, minerals and enzymes-all of which can be lost during cooking.

But while live plant foods serve as medicine for our body, we don’t really get to eat as much of them as our body needs. What’s holding us back is our taste buds that have been dulled by too much sweets and animal fats from cooked food.

So why not make juices out of plant foods?, suggests Kat Rempe Azanza of the wellness resort The Farm at San Benito in Lipa, Batangas.  “Juice cleansing, in effect, reboots your palate,” she tells you.

But since not everyone has the time and money to spend a week at The Farm, Kat and husband David thought of bringing the concept of convenience cleansing closer to those in need of it.

By tweaking it a bit, the couple has come up with juicing therapies that people have learned to embrace as part of natural healing programs. The husband and wife team has put into their recipes a no-nonsense, no-worries doctor-approved way of detoxifying and nourishing the body, one that doesn’t interfere with regular day-to-day lives.

As a cleansing program, Kat prefers juicing to blending.

Juicing extracts pure juice out of fruits and vegetables and leaves out the pulp and fiber. The undiluted nutrient-dense juice is designed to give the body a break, so that it can focus on digesting nutrients and flushing out the junk. It also promotes alkalinity in the body down to the blood and tissues to reduce the foothold of what Kat calls the “nasties”-bacteria, yeast, uric acid crystals, fungus, and mold–that thrive in acidic environments.

Blending is another way to pre-digest plant foods to maximize its nutritional benefits, better suited when you are on the go and want to consume your juice quickly. But blending whips a lot of air into the mix which causes the juice to oxidize faster. Blended beverages also have fiber content that needs to be digested. If you are on a juice fast and your goal is to detox your body, you should ideally not be burdening your digestive system.

Two years since introducing Metro Manila’s only juice-fast delivery service, juice cleansing has caught on as a trend among the metropolitan set. The likes of Kris Aquino, Anne Curtis, Dawn Zulueta, Lucy Torres Gomez, and Ogie Alcasid can be spotted lugging a Juju bottle to work or to their workouts. Like other health food-challenged people, they do the juju for various reasons-from wanting to lose weight to simply being healthy.

First-timers have reported being surprised by how much they end up enjoying the juices even as a handful still struggle with the taste of greens. But as Kat said, once you have cleaned up your system, your body will crave seconds. And thirds.

I found the green juice concoction tasty and filling.  GreenBomb, the centerpiece of the juice cleansing program, packs a wallop of greens: celery, spinach, cucumber, malunggay, and romaine lettuce juiced with coconut water and pineapple. I learned that drinking a mixture of 55 percent coconut water and 45 percent chlorophyll which is plant blood makes for an instant blood transfusion.

Hopefully, the Juju cleanse is not just a passing craze, says Kat. “Health and wellness are something we have to work at everyday,” she adds.  “Juicing is a lifestyle, not a diet. Juice fasting must be made a part of easing into a healthier way of life.”

Find out more about juice cleansing from www.jujucleanse.com

The Juice on Juicing

What juice works best for what ailment? How should you take your juice?

Forget heading over to the pharmacy for a quick fix. Juice yourself a drink instead. They are fresh, alive and hit the spot.

All fruits, including orange and lemon, are not at all acidic. They become alkaline in our body.

Eat them on an empty stomach or before a meal. Fruit mixes with the putrefying other food and produces gas. Hence you bloat.

Don’t drink juice that has been heated. Don’t eat cooked fruit; you don’t get the nutrients at all. You get only the taste.

Drink your juice slowly, mouthful by mouthful. Remember that digestion starts in the mouth. Let it mix with your saliva, which is a repository of digestive live enzymes, before swallowing.

Apples help to lower blood cholesterol levels and aid in digestion though they also keep blood sugar level up.  But apples help eliminate toxins and reduce the risks of a heart attack and stroke by preventing the hardening of the arteries.

Beets are high in vitamin A and the enzyme Betaine, which nourishes and strengthens the liver and gallbladder. Beets are an excellent source of potassium and provide a cleansing effect for the liver, kidneys, and gallbladder.

Carrots, which are a great source of vitamins A, B, C, iron, potassium, calcium, and sodium, have a cleansing effect on the liver and digestive system. They also help prevent the formation of kidney stones, and relieve symptoms of arthritis and gout.

Celery aids in managing high blood pressure, supports the immune system and helps detoxify carcinogens. It’s also a revitalizing brain tonic and stimulates digestion. It can be used as a natural sports drink to replace valuable fluid and mineral loss due to sweating.

Buko juice is great at alkalinizing the body as it is high in potassium and contains calcium and magnesium. It also contains the highest natural sources of electrolytes known to man, and is a great blood purifier.

Cayenne pepper Stimulates blood circulation and purifies the blood. It also promotes fluid elimination and sweating, and is most often used as a stimulating nerve tonic.

Cucumbers have a cleansing effect, and can help solve problems with acne, water retention, arthritis, kidneys, eczema and weight loss. They are also good for lowering blood pressure and are a source of silica, which is important for healthy connective tissue, muscles and bones.

Ginger stimulates blood flow to the digestive system and increases nutrient absorption. It is also useful for indigestion as it absorbs and neutralizes toxins in the stomach.

Grapefruit increases metabolic rate, lowers insulin levels and assists in fighting fatigue, fever, diabetes, constipation, indigestion, heart disease, urinary problems and acidity. It is also known as a powerful drug-poison eliminator and works as a liver tonic for the human body.

Himalayan crystal salt promotes a strong PH balance in our cells by regulating the water in our bodies. It allows for better nutrient absorption in the intestinal tract and promotes respiratory and sinus health.

Honey is a great source of vitamins and minerals, and is a natural antiseptic due to its antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. It also energizes the body, boosts immunity, and is a good remedy for sore throats and colds.

Lemons, aside from being high in vitamin C, helps strengthen the immune system; they also contain antioxidant and have anti-cancer properties.

Mint has always been used medicinally to aid digestion and relieve indigestion, heartburn, and irritable bowel syndrome by relaxing the muscles in and around the intestine.

Malunggay (moringa). This potent antioxidant is known to guard against skin cancer and prostate growth, and prevents the growth of cysts, tumors and glands. It is also used to prevent liver, kidney, stomach and thyroid problems and is effective for treating arthritis, rheumatism and joint pain.

Parsley is a strong diuretic and blood purifier. It protects the liver and spleen, and nourishes the kidneys, bladder and optic system. It also helps to neutralize carcinogens found in cigarette and charcoal smoke.

Pineapples aid digestion, are anti-inflammatory, promote immune support and offer anti-oxidant protection. They are a good source of potassium and contain vitamin C and iron.

Romaine lettuce is a great source of vitamin A, which helps support the immune system and counteracts free radical damage often associated with inflammatory conditions such as asthma, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.

Spinach is a good source of choline, which improves mental function, folic acid, a heart protector, and luteine, a cancer-fighting carotenoid. It is also high in chlorophyll, vitamins A and C, calcium, iron, protein and potassium.

Find out more about juice cleansing from www.jujucleanse.com.


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