With global rates of obesity and diabetes on the rise, it’s refreshing to see so many people investing in fitness these days. Wellness is trending again, and to stay on top of your game, you’ve got to hit the right blend of fitness and nutrition.
That includes finding the right kind and amount of exercise for you and maintaining a balanced diet—one that scores you all the important nutrients. Unfortunately, we live in an increasingly fast-paced world, and taking charge of your wellness game can be tough.
Enter, the juice and blend trend—two similar yet also different ways to stay on top of nutrition game on-the-go.
But for the uninitiated, juicing and blending are pretty much the same thing. So, what is the difference between a juicer and a blender, and which one is the best for you?
What is the difference between a juicer and a blender?
The most notable difference between a juicer and a blender is their yield – a juicer lets you squeeze the juice out of fruit until all you have left is the pulp. You’re left with juice that is pure and smooth, without any of the fibrous bits floating about.
On the other hand, a blender liquefies fruits and veggies with a rapidly spinning blade. The result is a thick and often pulpy drink, commonly called a “smoothie.”
In terms of appearance, blenders and juicers look the same, so shopping for one can get a little confusing.
“What is the difference between a juicer and a blender?” you might ask yourself, as you stroll down aisles of machines of various shapes, sizes, and colors.
Types of Juicers
The centrifugal juicer is probably the most type of juicer out there. Like in a blender, a spinning metal blade pushes against a filter to extract the juice from your fruit using force.
Meanwhile, the cold press juicer, otherwise known as the ‘masticating juicer’ employs a different technique—it crushes the juice out of fruits at a slower pace.
Though it takes longer, it’s considered superior to the centrifugal juicer for generating less heat, and thus leaving the nutrients more or less intact in comparison.
Types of Blenders
Like the juicer, there are also only two types of blenders —the immersion blender, and the countertop blender. The immersion blender is often small and resembles a stick or a wand.
Because it is a handheld device, it is more suited to blending soups and creating purees, that whipping up some smoothies. For that, there are countertop blenders. They come with different settings, give you the option to puree, grind, chop, and crush your ingredients.
There really isn’t a definitive answer to the juice versus smoothie debate. That’s because either drink has its own distinct benefits. Let’s evaluate a few areas of nutrition.
- For digestion – Fruits and veggies are rich in fiber, which are known to be wonderful digestive aids. Proper digestion affects the whole body, as the process of eliminating waste allows us to expel toxins. Unlike juicing, which forces you to discard the parts that are fiber-filled, blending retains the fibers found in fruits and veggies.
- For vitamin-absorption – Juices are pure concentrations of vitamins and minerals and all sorts of antioxidants. This means that a simple glass of juice can act as body boost for low-energy days, a suit of armor for when you feel like you’re about to get sick, and a daily supplement for those who don’t enjoy taking tablets.
- For snacking – Blending leaves you with a much thicker substance than juicing does. This means that a blended smoothie is more likely to leave you feeling full than a glass of juice is. This comes in handy for people who prefer breakfast on-the-go, or those who don’t like going hungry. A smoothie replaces junk food as a healthy and vitamin-filled snack.
Choosing the ingredients
Asking, “What is the difference between a juicer and a blender?” is perhaps an excellent step in nutrition, but be prepared to keep asking more.
Knowing what devices are best for squeezing those fruits and veggies into yummy, portable, and vitamin-packed drinks is one part of the process, but what about the fruits and veggies themselves?
Do you know which ones are best for you? And, just as important, which ones are best for either process?
Best Fruits for Juicing
Some fruits are juicier than others, like apples, oranges, papaya, pineapples, pomegranates, grapefruit, grapes, melons, lemons, kiwis, and limes, which are also excellent sources of vitamins and nutrients.
Oranges, grapefruit, and limes are known as one of the best sources of vitamin C. But did you know that apples are rich in the vitamin as well? Another thing they’re packed with is fiber, alongside pineapples, kiwis, and melons. Grapes are rich in antioxidants that are good for the heart.
Best Fruits & Veggies for Blending
When it comes to blending, you can use just about any fruit out there, since there is no need to sort out the juiciest ones. So any fruit you use for juicing can also be used for blending.
Veggies that go well in smoothies include squash, kale, spinach, carrots, tomatoes, and herbs – all jam-packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Other Foods to Blend
Aside from fruits and veggies, there are a ton of other ingredients that are healthy and blender-safe, such as peanut butter, which is high in protein, oatmeal, which is high in fiber and good for the heart, cacao, which is rich in antioxidants, yogurt, which is good for digestion, and seeds and berries like flax seeds, chia seeds, and acai berries.
Riding the juice and blend trend is more than just being trendy – it’s a step in the right direction towards fitness and wellness. But always remember that blended and juiced drinks are only one component to attaining a healthier body.
Proper diet, a good exercise program, and healthy habits, like proper hydration, ample sleep, and maintaining your mental well-being all contribute to a strong and healthy body.
Lastly, don’t forget to visit your doctor and have regular check-ups to ensure that everything is in tip-top condition. Oftentimes, we live unaware of deficiencies and even diseases that can get worse if untreated. Know what your body needs and remedy that with a good wellness program!
The best way forward to arm yourself with knowledge—whether it’s in knowing the difference between a juicer and a blender or knowing the needs of your own body.