Adventures in Juicing

I started juicing today. Based on the recommendations of Juicing for Men and Hawaiian Libertarian I asked for a juicer for Christmas, and received Jack Lelanne’s Power Juicer as a gift.

I used it once immediately after to make sure it works; I threw whatever I had lying around into it to create a single glass. But I haven’t used it other than that until last week.

I decided to try to make enough for one cup each weekday morning, as I no longer eat breakfast, and would like a nutrient boost as a replacement for breakfast.

I ended up making a litre (4 cups) worth in about a half hour from the following ingredients, which ended up costing less than $20:

  • 1 large bag of brussel sprouts
  • 1 large bag of spinach
  • 6 bananas
  • a handful of leftover blueberries
  • 1 pineapple

Here’s what I found:

I didn’t notice any real improvement in my life from a week of juicing in the morning, but I did enjoy having something to fill my stomach early.

Costco did not sell either kale or collard greens, which is why I used brussel sprouts and spinach. I need to find a source of kale.

The taste was unpleasant, but not overly so. It’s something that seems like it could grow on me, or at the very least be tolerable.

My juicer had a hard time with the pineapple and the brussel sprouts tended to get clogged. It also needed frequent cleaning and even died on me a couple times (which was rectified by cleaning and restarting). If I end up doing this regularly I’ll definitely need a more efficient juicer.

Bananas are not good for juicing. They create a slime, rather than juice and made the consistency of the juice really weird. They also tended to clog the machine.

Pineapple is good in the juice. It adds a nice sweetness.

The berries and spinach juiced easily, and the spinach made a nice dark green juice which looked pretty cool.

The brussel sprouts had a harsh taste and tended to clog easily. I’d like to replace them with Kale or more Spinach.

The berries give very little juice. In my original throw whatever I had in glass to test the machine experiment, I used a whole package of blueberries and got only a tiny amount of juice. I don’t think berries are exceedingly cost effective for this purpose, but I might add in one pack each week for flavour and nutrients.


I’m going to continue to try juicing to see if any effect takes place over a longer time period, but if I decide to make this a permanent part of my diet, I am definitely going to have to buy a better juicer.

I might occasionally post more on juicing as I do it. I can’t say that I recommend it at this point and haven’t noticed any real life improvement, but I’ve only done it a week. After a longer period, I’ll have more information to share.

Any advice or comments any of my readers who juice might have would be appreciated.


  1. I have the exact same juicer.

    Here’s what I figured out about it…do all the greens and water-filled fruits first. You’re denser heavier stuff is what clogs up the blade and causes the jamming and auto-shutdown.

    Try cutting up your produce to different sizes to find what size works best without jamming up the juicer.

    Oh, and while I find it interesting to throw in variable produce to see what kind of concoctions are possible….

    …I’ve got way way past that experimental phase. I juice to start consuming a lot of produce I normally just don’t eat because I don’t like the way they taste and/or they are not in my normal staple of cooking recipes. I eat a lot of fruits and vegetables already. I’ve tried juicing cucumbers, carrots, broccoli, aspargus, cauliflower, tangerines, tomatoes, zucchini, bell peppers and cabbage. But those are all produce I cook and eat regularly, so I figure whats the point juicing all that when it’s already prominent portion of my diet?

    So I now basically juice beets, kale, celery, chard, collard greens, and ginger.

    It’s the beets and celery where you will really notice the difference….as the natural nitrates are a natural vasodilator that increases blood flow and circulation dramatically – i.e. I’m almost 40 years old, and ever since I began juicing beets and celery, I’ve been getting daily morning wood.

    Haven’t had that since I was a teenager. I thought that was just something I outgrew. Not so. lozlzolzolzol

    Oh yeah, if you do like I do and make one large batch of juice to last severarl days, make sure you always juice a lemon and a lime in it (skin and all). The citrus is a natural anti-oxidant that will help keep your juice from going bad.

    As a commenter at Juicing for Men noted, guacamole without lime turns brown quickly…oxidation. Add the lime, and it prevents the avocado from oxidizing, maintaining it’s green color. The citrus acid will keep the juice fresher for longer in your fridge.

    Finally, I add fresh ground sea salt for both the taste and the trace minerals, as well as a little bit of oil to every batch (about a teaspoon or so), as the fat in the oil helps you to better absorb the nutrients. I usually use extra virgin olive oil or macadamia nut oil for that.

  2. “So I now basically juice beets, kale, celery, chard, collard greens, and ginger.”

    Same here. Also add broccoli stems. The tops I cook by frying in a little coconut oil and adding a small amount of water to steam for a few minutes. But the thick stems, which are pretty tough, I save for juicing. Add one pear or one apple for sweetness.

  3. @ Keoni: Thanks. That’s a lot of good advice; I’m hoping to try to skip the experimentation stage, or at least have a standard recipe before experimenting too much.

    I’m definitely going to try yours, although, I think I’ll add pineapple. It’s not something I like on it’s own, but as I figure it will add a bit of sweetness, and I’ve heard it has a lot of positive effects, including some related to morning wood. Hopefully, the local Safeway should hopefully carry those ingredients, otherwise, I’m go0i9ng to have to shop around a bunch.

    What’s your opinion of adding protein powder?

    @ Carnivore: That sounds like a good idea. I do enjoy the top part of broccoli, but never cared for the stems, but if I just juice them, that solves the problem.

  4. Might I attempt:

    (1) Just juice the whole goddamn vegetable — stems and all. Fruit goes in with skin and seeds except the very toughest. You know, bioflavonoids, anthocyanins, tannins… that fancy stuff. Keep banana, avocado, papaya, mango and all berries for the blender. Always mix fruit and vegetable ingredients for maximum palatability and phytochemical cocktail goodness.

    (2) Get your herbs and spices out. Cinnamon, ginger, mint and nutmeg are your best bet for extra twist — nutmeg being rather famous for morning iron. These are for the final step in a blender.

    (3) Exotic fruits (e.g., kei apple, bloodfruit, pomegranate, passion fruit etc.) and berries in season are always the way to go.

    (4) Use unflavored yogurt, whipped cream or coconut cream/milk (rather than coconut and olive oils) as the lipid transporter for the A-D-E-K-calcium-magnesium complex and for added probiotic benefits.

    (5) If you’re a superfood believer (e.g., spirulina), here’s where to use it.

    (6) Do not use juicing as meal replacement. Use as SUPPLEMENT. Eat regular most times.

    (7) Juicing can waste a lot of your time and money for little benefit. It’s not necessary to obtain a specialty brand “twin-gear, masticating” juicier. Get yourself a simple Black & Decker centrifugal juicer that dissembles, cleans and dries in seconds. Also, juicing twice a week is more than sufficient.

  5. Gruesome, thanks for the tips. I do not plan on replacing a meal; I simply don’t generally eat breakfast, but I would like a little pick-me-up for the mornings (I don’t drink coffee).

    etype, can juice not be stored for a while?

  6. @Free Northerner: Most welcome.

    @etype: Juice is meant to be rendered and consumed same day/time (seems you misunderstood). Two days a week doing this is quite enough.

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