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Nutritionists will tell you that the human body requires five servings of fruits and vegetables each day. Raw/uncooked fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, beans, and seeds provide your body with fiber, vitamins, and minerals. But busy schedules and eating on the run can make consuming these necessary nutrients difficult.

Juicing is an easy, delicious way to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet. Commercial juice products are made of processed juices and sugars and are loaded with food colorings and preservatives. Juicing fresh fruits and vegetables at home is 100% natural and also is cost efficient.

Consider this: One cup of carrot juice contains the equivalent nutritional value of four cups of raw, chopped carrots. Perfect for people on the go!

TYPES OF JUICERS

Manual
Manual juicers look like the old-fashioned orange juice makers. While this is an effective (though strenuous) way to pull the juices from citrus fruits, it will not work with other fruits or vegetables.

Electronic
There are thousands of different juicers on the market, and all do the same thing. A juicer requires immediate cleaning after use, so it's best to look for one that has easily removable parts.

HINTS AND TRICKS

1. Always peel citrus fruits.
2. Cut all fruit and vegetables to fit juicer chute.
3. Turn off juicer when not in use. Juicer motors are not meant to run continuously. Prepare fruits and vegetables first and use immediately.
4. Always wash all fruits and vegetables before juicing.
5. Not all fruits make juice. Bananas, for example, make puree. When using bananas, always blend with other more watery fruits.
6. Try not to combine fruits with vegetables, as some nutritional value can be lost in doing this.
7. Remember that the fruits or vegetables you juice will not look store bought. Fresh grapefruit juice, for example, is brown in color when juiced, not yellow.
8. Drink juices immediately after juicing to prevent nutrient loss.
9. The pulp leftover from juicing can be used in soups, vegetable dips, and more.
10. Clean juicer (especially the strainer) immediately. Stains from vegetables can be removed with a paste made of baking soda and water.

RECIPES

Morning Pick Me Up
1 apple
1 grapefruit (peeled)

Energy Booster
handful of parsley
6 carrots

Carrot Apple Juice
6 carrots
2 apples

Orange Juice
3 oranges-peeled
(Grapefruit juice can be made by adding the same amount of grapefruit to juicer.)

The Waldorf
1 stalk celery
2 apples

Sunshine Surprise
2 apples
4-6 strawberries

Memory Booster
4-5 carrots
3 stalks celery
1/4 head of small cabbage
1/4 lemon (or lemon peel)

Calming Concoction
1 kale leaf
1 collard leaf
handful parsley
1 celery stalk
1 carrot
1/2 red pepper
1 tomato
1 broccoli floret

Breakfast Smoothie
2 apples
2 frozen bananas
2 oranges
1/4 pound seedless grapes

Headache Help
1 handful spinach
1 handful parsley
2 celery stalks
4-6 carrots

Stomach Soother
1/4 lemon with peel
1/2 grapefruit (peeled)
2 oranges

Pineapple Breakfast Smoothie
2 apples
2 cups pineapple
2 frozen bananas
2 oranges
1/2 large Papaya

Squash Surprise
2 apples
6 carrots
4 sprigs mint
1 yellow squash

AAA Juice
6 carrots
1 apple
2 celery stalks
1/2 handful wheat grass
1/2 handful parsley
1/2 beet

Watermelon Wonder
Cut watermelon into strips (rind, too) and juice

Cleansing Creation
4 carrots
1/2 cucumber
1 beet

Don't let these recipes limit you. Combine your favorite fruits or vegetables and experiment. Remember, you are what you eat.