Monday, March 18, 2013
Which Juicer Is Right For You?
After watching the documentary “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead” my wife and I decided to take the leap and start a juice fast/juice cleanse. We are glad that we did. But the first step, after shamefully putting away our ice cream bowls, and turning off the documentary, was buying a juicer. There are so many options available. Healthformation overload is alive and well in the world of juicing. You wonder if you can ever get through it all. But in the words of Justin Bieber, “Never Say Never!” So, which is the right juicer for you? Should you buy a Masticating or Centrifugal juicer? What is a Centrifugal juicer? What is a Masticating Juicer? We have set out to simplify the process for you, as you begin your journey.The first step was choosing the right juicer. WOW! There are so many juicers available on the market! Who knew? The price range can go from $19 for a simple citrus juicer to $59 on upward of $1,200 for more complicated juicers. For the purposes of a juice cleanse, or juice fast: we focused on Centrifugal vs Masticating.
Centrifugal: (No we aren’t talking about juicers made in North Korea or Iran here). Fruit/vegetables are fed in through a chute. The chute is usually large enough to accept a small/regular sized apple. At the bottom of the chute is a spinning blade that shreds the contents. Pulp is thrown out of one side into one container, and the juice falls through a strainer at the bottom, and out into your pitcher. On the plus side, the juice is made extremely quickly. The pulp can be fed back through to extract additional juice and reduce waste. On the con side, some nutrients are destroyed due to the heat created by the appliance as it is working at a high wattage to juice so quickly. These juices do not store as long as masticated juices. We have occasionally made our breakfast and lunch juice the night before, but have found that they become very watery. The quality clearly breaks down quickly in terms of appearance, taste and nutrition.
Masticating: This juice machine chews the fruits and vegetables. Produce is fed in through a chute. These chutes are usually much smaller than the centrifugal juicer. In my opinion, the smaller chute will likely cost you more time. It is something to consider if time is your main concern. One to two large, screw looking, devices pull the produce in, chew it up, and then spit out juice on one side, and pulp on the other. The juice made with this type of juicer does retain some of the fiber of the whole food. These juicers are very low wattage so the juice is made much more slowly (10-20 minutes). The benefits of the lower wattage is that there is not enough heat generated by the appliance to destroy any of the nutrients in the food. Juices made with masticating juicers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 72 hours, even longer for your top end models. Masticating juicers generally require a little more prep time in cutting the produce that is going to be fed into the juicer.
The ongoing debate: Centrifugal or Masticating? It’s impossible to answer this question without first listing out what is important to you. Time, money, lasting juice, ease of cleaning. I have the Breville, 850 Watt, Centrifugal, Juice Fountain (about $150.00). What is important to me is time, ease of cleaning, quality lasting juice. The Breville gives me just about everything I need as a novice juicer, with one exception; the juice is only good for up to 8 hours. I am an early riser, and I have two small children at home. If I want to juice for the day I would have to wake around 4am and start juicing. This would wake my dog, the children, confederate ghosts in our backyard, and perhaps most frighteningly… my wife who does not want to start the day at 4am. Some of the pricier masticating juicers advertise that the juice can last up to 2 weeks. But now we are getting in to expensive territory.
Bottom Line: If you have time and money to spare: Masticating is the way to go. If you are short on time and most of your money is still tied up in a Bernie Madoff Ponzie scheme… then Centrifugal is the way to go! Centrifugal is also generally recommended for those of us new to juicing. Masticating juicers start around $350, so unless you really have money to burn it is probably wise not to invest that much until you are sure you enjoy it and intend to stick with it. I have briefly summarized the information we sorted through in making a decision. The one route it is clear you don't want to go is the very low $59 Hamilton Beach end of juicing. A quick search on Amazon, and you too will find that the difficulty in using and the amount of wet pulp left behind wastes more of your money on produce than you saved on the juicer. You can find another juice buying guide here. http://www.rebootwithjoe.com/juicing/juicer-buying-guide/ It was helpful to us in deciding which one to purchase. They nicely lay out the pros and cons to both types of juicers, though the only brand recommendation made is the Breville.
1 Day And A Lifetime to Go!