Sunday, January 22, 2012

Pickin' My Greens to Juice

Morning Juice Ingredients
Do you recognize the greens I'm getting ready to juice? What value do kale, dandelion greens and beet tops supply me, when added to my juicing staples of carrot, apple, ginger and garlic?
I found dandelion greens at our local health food market, but as my husband told me, "You can go pick your own in the coming warmer months." I think I will—listen to this: 
According to LeafLady the health benefits  of dandelion are nothing short of miraculous. In fact, Taraxacum officinale (common dandelion) means "Official Remedy for Disorders."
Taken as part of your daily diet it can:  
". . . prevent or cure liver diseases . . . purify your blood, cleanse your system, dissolve kidney stones, and otherwise improve gastro-intestinal health; assist in weight reduction; cleanse your skin and eliminate acne; improve your bowel function . . . prevent or lower high blood pressure; prevent or cure anemia; lower your serum cholesterol by as much as half; eliminate or drastically reduce acid indigestion; prevent or cure various forms of cancer; prevent or control diabetes mellitus; and, at the same time, have no negative side effects and selectively act on only what ails you."
Well, I know that any leafy green is going to be good for me, but in one important study, dandelions ranked in the top 4 green vegetables in overall nutritional value. They are rich in beta-carotene, high in fiber, potassium, iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and the B vitamins, thiamine and riboflavin, vitamin C, micronutrients like cpoper, zinc and boron, and are a good source of protein along with Vitamin D. No wonder it's so good for us!

 Kale is getting a lot of attention!
I see kale now in all the local grocery stores, and it's very pretty too.
According to Dr. Mercola:
  • Kale eases lung congestion and is beneficial to the stomach, liver and immune system
  • It contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which protect the eyes from macular degeneration
  • It also contains indole-3-carbinol, which may protect against colon cancer
  • Kale is an excellent source of calcium, iron, vitamins A and C, and chlorophyll
 And what about beet greens? 

Besides adding a gorgeous dark red hue to your juice:
  • Beet greens contain notable amounts of calcium, iron, magnesium and phosphorus
  • They also contain vitamins A, B-complex and C
I don't know how those with debilitating disease, having to drink fresh juice all day long can do it, but I'm making it a priority to make sure I get a healthy green juice at least once a day. I've also experimented a bit. I squeezed oranges and juiced my greens and added them together. Yum! The greens can taste kind of bitter or "green," but added to the orange, or apple, the taste is not noticeable.
I also have some healthy organic green powders that I add to smoothies or mix in juice, but I feel the real thing is most likely best. My smoothies also contain greens like kale, spinach or bok choy.

My juice is ready now—

Bottoms up! Here's to your health!

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