Juices are being sold in supermarkets, hawker centres and at dedicated juice bars, but with so many options available, how to you select the best one for yourself?
While pondering that, you might have also come across the term ‘cold-pressed juices’ in recent years, which are different from regular commercial fruit juices sold in cartons, or the ones offered at the kopitiam. They look fancier and tend to cost more, but more importantly, are they better than the others?
The fruit juices we have in the market today typically boast of their all-natural ingredients, claiming to contain only fresh fruits and vegetables, without added sugar or preservatives. While the ingredients in your juice are important, the way the juices are made can also make a difference, in the case of cold-pressed juices.
Cold-pressed juices are made quite literally, by using pressure to press and extract the maximum amount of juice from fresh fruits and vegetables. With no heat and oxygen being used in the process, no nutrients are lost or destroyed, unlike in regular centrifugal juicers. As such, the cold press process can reportedly help to retain more nutrients from its ingredients as compared to regular juices.
Cold-pressed juices also contain higher juice concentration as they are usually made solely from fruits and vegetables, unlike ones in the stores that have typically been diluted or contain preservatives.
Regular juices bought from a local fruit stall, on the other hand, are produced from slices of fruit, in a process often involving exposure to heat and air. The heat destroys most of the nutrients from the fruits and vegetables, while the air causes the juice to foam and separate quickly. Regular juices break down almost immediately, and thus have to be consumed within half an hour.
Besides the method of production, cold-pressed juice mixes tend to include a wider variety of vegetables that you won’t normally find at a regular fruit juice stall, like spinach, cucumber, cabbage and kale. As such, the juices are a possible option to supplement the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants you’ll miss out on when you don’t consume a range of vegetables.
However, nutritionists advise against using these juices to replace the consumption of fresh foods, and they are not a quick fix to an unhealthy diet. Eating fruits and vegetables whole is still the best way to receive all their nutrients, and fills you up more.
Besides, drinking multiple bottles of juices in a day could lead to an overconsumption of calories without providing the same feeling of fullness gained from consuming solid food. Hence, while drinking cold-pressed juices could boost your health, you may still feel the urge to eat more.
To avoid that, the best way to enjoy your juices is to have it along with a small meal. Nutritionists also recommend drinking the juice as a morning pick-me-up or an afternoon snack.