Do you love to eat up the whole fruit? Or, is it the freshly crushed juice that appeals to you more. Both as you know are healthy options. However, is there really a difference between the nutritional value of the two, if it involves the same fruit?
The answer is a big 'Yes'.
While freshly squeezed fruit juice is a healthy addition to your daily diet, it cannot replace eating whole fruits (or vegetables). In the choice between juicing and eating whole fruits, though juicing has its advantages, the latter offers more nutrition. Here's why.
Advantage: Juicing is convenient
The convenience of gulping down a glass of juice versus eating a whole fruit is one of the biggest advantages of juicing. However, this counts as a convenience only if you aren't making the juice and cleaning the juicer yourself. When you have to make your own juice, it probably would be easier to simply cut and eat the fruit.
Advantage: Juicing makes it easier for the body to absorb nutrients
Juicing is said to make absorbing nutrients easier for people with digestive diseases such as inflammatory bowel diseases. This is because the process of juicing removes fibers thus giving the digestive system less work to do. Another advantage is eating a whole fruit fills you up more than drinking a glass of juice. This allows you to take in higher amounts of vitamins, minerals, enzymes etc. However, this theory has not been proved.
Disadvantage: Juicing removes fiber
Though the removal of fiber makes it easier for the body to digest fruit juice, this loss of fiber is actually a disadvantage for people with a healthy digestive system. Since the digestive system does not have to work on digesting fibers in juice, the body uses fewer calories in the process. Lesser calories burnt imply lesser weight loss. Since juices are digested faster than whole fruits, hunger is satisfied for shorter periods of time leading to an increased appetite.
Disadvantage: Juicing removes flavonoids
Along with a loss of fiber, flavonoids found in the skin and fruit pulp are also lost in the process of juicing. Flavonoids have been linked to longevity and are best known for their antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that help prevent a number of cardiovascular diseases. In citrus fruits, the whole fruit is said to have five times the flavonoids as a glass of juice made from them.
To fuse the convenience of juice and the healthiness as whole fruit, use a blender instead of a juicer. This way, you don't lose any fruit pulp and can enjoy a tasty glass of juice. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a Dietitian/Nutritionist.