Spring Cleaning: An Inside Job
By Jason Deyo
As published in Edible Los Angeles
If you’ve never tried juice-blending, then get ready for an energizing treat.
Juice-blending is the best way I know to get a jump start on your health and restore the springtime spring to your step. Despite the amazing vitamin content of sugar-rich vegetables like carrots and beets, there is plenty of research to suggest that high-sugar juices aren’t doing our sedentary bodies any favors. So if you want to avoid the insulin shot, have a shot of something green. Start with a base like celery, kale or parsley and then bring in a few brightly colored veggies or low-glycemic fruits to make a tasty powerhouse juice-blend that won’t put you to sleep like that pale and dusty old carrot juice. After all, as Thumper says, “Eating greens is a special treat. It makes long ears and great big feet.”
It’s hard to believe, but the best blend actually depends on the juicer you use. The most common juicers are called centrifugal, and they are terrific for quick pick-me-ups. These juicers remove the fiber so we can bypass the digestive process and quickly absorb the nutrients without any digestive burden on the body. My old Jack Lalanne Power Juicer cost under $100, and it still works fine.
The next two levels of juicers are respectively called single- and double-gear masticators. Prices range from the single-gear Omega 8003 at $230 to the twin-gear Green Star at $450. These pull more nutrients from the fiber than the centrifugal does and allows us to restore more of the vital enzymes that our bodies lose as we age. Although the fiber stays in the juice, it is so well broken down that the nutrients and enzymes are still easily absorbed. This extra fiber gives us a little more leeway in terms of veggie variety, so go ahead and toss in a carrot or a beet with your greens.
Another option I really like is something called the Vita-Mix, which is an easy to clean high-powered blender. The Vita-Mix keeps more of the blood sugar-stabilizing and colon-cleansing fiber intact, giving your juice a thicker and creamier texture.
Tossing some celery, kale, carrots, parsley and ginger into a juice-blender doesn’t require a recipe from Ina Garten, just a desire to look and feel your best. Try a blend of red pepper, spinach, zucchini and basil, and if that’s not rich enough for you, toss in an avocado to thicken it up. Not into basil? Go sweet and creamy by adding some healthy coconut instead. Thinking seasonally? Stock up on this spring’s fresh fennel and asparagus to add to your carrot, celery and spinach blend.
Juicing on the run? Juliano of planet RAW on 6 Street and Broadway in Santa Monica is one of the pioneers of blending veggies into truly delicious and nutritious drinks.
“Juicing is out and blending is in,” says Juliano, so you know you’ll take in all the fiber, antioxidants and phytochemicals you need when you’re there. Try the energizing red Blood or go green and order the Alien Blood.
Stop by One Life Natural Foods on Main Street in Santa Monica and order an Organic Green Team Combo with a little ginger or apple to sweeten the deal. This powerhouse drink is loaded with the nutrients you need to lower your blood pressure and flush toxins from your kidneys. Or try Mrs. Winston’s Café on Ocean Park and 31 Street, where they’ll make you a custom green juice blend from their amazing salad bar if you ask, and it’s served in a recycled to-go cup.
Ready to “clean house?” Give your digestion a little break and let those enzymes do some healing with a three-day juice cleanse. In fact, why not have it delivered? Give Tim Martin from Izocleanze a call at (310) 963-5332, and he will rush the most comprehensive juice cleanse program I have ever found right to your doorstep. My first day proved to be more of a feast than a fast and on day three I had organized all my closets and hiked Temescal Canyon in record time.
Find room to add juice-blending to your lifestyle. Whether it’s a weekend cleanse or just a nutrient-dense pick-me-up, make this year’s spring cleaning an inside job and start the season with your body and mind in the clear. If nothing else, host a salsa-dancing party this spring and use your new juice-blender to create the perfect sangria!
You can contact Jason at firstname.lastname@example.org.