Cold-pressed juice companies are popping up faster than techies in an Apple store during an iPhone release. Even Starbucks is getting in on the action with their Evolution Fresh juice line that claims to pack in 1 to 2 pounds of fruits and/or vegetables in every bottle.
Some of the claims about drinking freshly extracted juice are that it boosts the immune system, helps with weight loss, prevents cancer, and cleanses the entire body's physiology. But is cold-pressed juice superior to the centrifugal juice that most people are used to?
Depends who you ask.
Jamie Stephenson, owner of The Juice Standard in Las Vegas, Nevada, says, "Cold-pressed juice is superior for a few good reasons. These machines have the power to extract nearly every last drop of juicy goodness from the produce. The gentler press process not only allows for a healthier juice, but also a longer shelf life of up to four days, where centrifugal juice should be consumed within an hour or so."
Cold-pressed juice is also ideal for cleansing. When you fast, it relieves the body from using energy to break down food in the digestive process. Therefore, the body has more fuel to rapidly heal and detoxify. Since cold-pressed juicers extract most of the fiber content from a fruit or vegetable, it's easier to digest than centrifugal juice, and therefore more ideal for cleansing.
Centrifugal Juicers vs. Cold-Press Juicers
Centrifugal juicers are the most common juicers found in homes and juice bars worldwide. They use a speedy metal blade to grate, shred, and spin, extracting the juice through a mesh filter.
The centrifugal force against the produce creates a mild heating and oxidation of the fruit or vegetable, which can break down and damage vital nutrients and enzymes. These juicers also retain a lot of the pulp and fiber from the produce, which can be seen as a less desirable feature, depending on your preference.
Centrifugal juice is the more affordable option for daily juicing. It's fresher and healthier than the typical store-bought juice that may have been canned or bottled months in advance.
Cold-press juicers (or masticating juicers) use tons of pressure to crush and press the juice from the produce. This helps to keep nutrients and enzymes in tact (by not producing heat). They also produce less pulp, which is easier on the digestive system.
Cold-press juicers are also a lot quieter and typically press out more juice per fruit and veggie than a centrifugal juicer. They also tend to be more expensive.
Why is cold-pressed juice more expensive?
The hefty price tag on this form of juice extraction is mainly due to the amount of produce that goes into one serving, but for other reasons as well. It is said to be the healthiest form of juice that we know of because of how it keeps micronutrients and enzymes from the raw produce intact.
Stephenson explains: "Plants that are raw and unheated contain enzymes which help to facilitate phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals into the body. This is called the coenzyme factor. Enzymes are the construction workers of the body. They build our bodies and they need tools. The tools are the phytonutrients and vitamins.
"For instance, you can add a powdered supplement to your morning smoothie, or pop a vitamin, but these supplements are essentially dead. The enzyme has expired, so you'll only absorb a fraction of the nutrients into your body.
"When drinking a cold-pressed juice, even a couple of days after it's been made, it is chock full of active enzymes that will flood your body with life force from the suns energy. Raw is powerful stuff."
Which Should I Choose?
If you are doing a cleanse, are interested in getting the most nutrients from your juice, and can afford the price tag, a cold-pressed juicer is the way to go.
If you are on a budget but still want the benefits of drinking fresh juice, a centrifugal juicer is probably your best bet.
Either way, drinking organic, raw, fresh juice from either source is a healthy option.
Bess O’Connor is the founder of Urban Wellness Magazine. She has studied in many healing traditions, is a Certified Ayurvedic and Holistic Health Practitioner and worked as a Healing Arts Master for the Chopra Center for 8 years. A holistic, natural lifestyle is what she’s all about. To her, WELLNESS is short for: Water, Exercise, Love, Light, Nature, Energy, Sun & Spirit. Connect with her on facebook and twitter.