In the latter half of 2012 I kicked my health and wellness routine into high gear by picking up kickboxing. A few weeks later I decided to try to start incorporating better food into my diet. After all, if you don’t have your health you’ve basically got diddly squat. And aside from that, since I was diagnosed with IBS almost three years ago I’m pretty sick and tired of having to deal with my stomach. I am happy to say that since I’ve been making healthier lifestyle choices the condition has significantly improved.
This has been an incredibly slow process because well, most things that are worth having in life are. Little by little I have been weaning myself off of dairy (easy because dairy makes me feel kind of sick anyway). If I order out I’m paying attention to lean meats, going for more veggies and trying to pick from local raw and organic restaurants. I also whipped out a blender that’s older than I am and started experimenting with making green smoothies.
Are there days when I fall off the wagon? Of course! Like when my family makes the annual batch of oatmeal chocolate chip Christmas cookies. Or when I’m out with friends. And I don’t think I can ever give up coffee for too long (Maybe because I’m Cuban? Heh heh). Oh and I’m such a sucker for pasta! But the point is that I am slowly incorporating healthier foods into my diet.
One of the easiest ways to ensure that you’re getting plenty of green & raw goodies is through juicing. It’s become such a fad that you’ve probably seen it mentioned just about everywhere. As such you’re probably rolling your eyes as you envision me hugging a tree and enduring whatever new cleanse happens to be popular.
But I assure you this is much more than a fad. Below you’ll find some of the benefits of juicing:
The ability to consume a wide variety of produce. Seriously, it takes a ton of fruits and veggies to make a juice. Just this morning I used an entire pack of spinach, and entire pack of blueberries, carrots and celery. I couldn’t chew all of that even if I wanted to. Juicing makes it easy to consume and digest.
You get the nutrients faster. A lot of times nutrients get stuck in the fibers of veggies and fruits. Juicing is able to extract all the nutrients from the raw components for you so you can gulp it right on down. Granted, we need fiber every once in a while so don’t totally forgo the whole food either.
Promotes alkalinity. Any of you Kris Carr fans know all about alkalinity. Here’s the Cliff Notes version: in order to keep our bodies healthy and balanced they need to be slightly alkaline. Here’s the problem: the typical American diet is extremely acidic and practically devoid of any good things like enzymes. So what happens? Inflammation, allergies, arthritis, skin problems, mood disorders, depression, constipation, bowel issues, stress (physical & mental) and in my case IBS. And those are just the minor ailments. Let’s not forget to mention obesity, heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
Allows for efficient elimination. We need to get rid of the bad stuff. Period. Point blank.
Encourages weight loss/control. So many people go on diets to lose weight only to gain all the weight back in no time. Diets aren’t the solution, sustainable lifestyle changes are. Green juices are a great way to start making those changes and control your weight.
Youthful appearance/smoother skin. Okay, so I know we’re all mostly in our twenties, but I can’t tell you how many young people I interview who look so much OLDER than they actually are. Seriously, some of you look like crap. The goodies in green juices give you a youthful glow.
So where do you start learning about green juices? Where do you find recipes? How do you even pick a juicer?
Ladies and Gentlemen allow me to share my personal collection of green juice resources. I’ve used these resources to grow my own knowledge in health, wellness and you guessed it – green juices and smoothies!
Crazy Sexy Diet: Eat Your Veggies, Ignite Your Spark and Live Like You Mean It! by Kris Carr (This will give you a good run down of everything you need to know for your body!)
Crazy Sexy Juices and Succulent Smoothies by Kris Carr
A Beginner’s Guide to Juicing by Sharon Daniels
The Juicing Bible by Pat Crocker
Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead – A documentary that outlines the benefits of juicing as one man undergoes his own journey in getting healthy while helping others do the same. PURE AWESOMENESS!