Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Chris James' Guide to Juicing


I've talked about and to Chris James on the blog before - after a recent juicing attempt resulted in migraine and vomiting (EEW) I thought I'd ask him for the low-down - he's been advocating juicing for years...

CH: Chris you’re a tad obsessed with juicing aren’t you?
I’m completely evangelical about juicing. In addition to eating whole fruit and vegetables, I drink from 300ml to 600ml of raw freshly pressed vegetables every day – you should see my kitchen!  I do this so that my body and mind functions properly all year round.  I have not seen a doctor for over 10 years. I was contacted by my surgery recently to ask me if I existed – was everything ok?  I can account for the fact that I have no idea what the inside of a surgery looks like, because of a lifestyle of structured cleansing.  I cleanse 3-4 times a year for 12 days at a time...


CH: OK I get that, isn’t it more important to focus on the alkalinity of your system in general – rather than sporadically?
For my body and mind to function optimally it is important to maintain the correct balance of acidity versus alkalinity – remember this from your Biology and Chemistry classes? The human body has a healthy PH of about 7.3 / 7.4 or about the same as sea water.  So you should aim to cut out acidic forming foods, such as processed and refined foods, and focus on alkaline forming foods like vegetables.
If your body and blood is acidic, then your immune system against infection will be compromised. Not only this, it will interfere with your metabolism and digestion and make you feel sluggish.  If left unchecked, and this the most serious bit – it will eventually cause you more serious long-term health problems. 

CH: And juices are predominantly alkaline – and obviously full of enzymes and close to their natural state yes? 
Raw juices are bursting with active enzymes, which are vital to a healthy diet and delivers vitamins, minerals and antioxidants straight to your body which rebuilds and rebalances the entire system.

CH: What about the current obsession with total cleanses? No solid food etc for weeks and weeks on end. I can’t believe that is good for you? I tried and failed - spectacularly.
I am not a fan of 100% juice cleanses, especially if they are delivered to your door, apart from being costly, the integrity of the enzymes dissipate by the time that they arrive making them in large part nutritionally useless, despite whatever cold pressed juicers the juicing companies claim to be using.
The only way to benefit from the sea of vitamins, active enzymes and minerals from raw vegetables and fruit, is to press it yourself, or at least to make sure that whoever is pressing it is using the freshest of ingredients.  As soon as you cut into fruit and vegetables, the enzymes (literally raw sparks of life) start to die.  This is why I am also against the practice of storing your juices for any length of time.  It is much better to imbibe straightaway.
For the reasons mentioned above eating raw food is certainly beneficial to the body, because of the amount of inherent active enzymes.  As soon as you start to cook foods, you start to kill their enzymes.  Roasting and microwaving (throw away your microwave!) vegetables will completely destroy the enzymes, whereas stir frying or flash frying will only cook the outer edges, while the integrity of the enzyme stays intact in the middle.

CH: Our microwave recently conked out and I’m resisting replacing it! I’m obsessed with following the Raw Till 4 concept on Instagram – mainly if I’m honest because the food always looks so bloody good. I have noticed though, that the people who do it well live in really hot climates – I don’t think I could do it in this weather!
The Raw Till 4 concept is a vegan program that focuses on eating raw fruits and vegetables, no animal products, little to no fats or seeds.  You basically eat whole, unprocessed raw foods until 4pm.  Then you are allowed to cook and eat certain beneficial foods, but again, without oils to help flavour and cook your food.  While eating raw is beneficial this would only work 365 days a year if we lived close to the Equator.  In Western Europe, we need warming foods in the colder winter months in order to provide warmth for the kidneys amongst other things!  This approach may work in warmer summer months, but only eating cooked foods after 4pm?  I am not convinced.  This approach smacks of the 5:2 diet which encourages binge eating amongst other things.

CH: That 5:2 nonsense did not interest me at ALL.
On balance, the verdict on whether a 100% raw food diet is healthy is mixed. If you’re a healthy adult who likes to prepare food but not necessarily cook and you have no problem giving up meat or dairy, the raw food diet might be for you. And, while I believe that eating raw food has a significant contribution to make to human health and longevity, caution should be exercised when adopting a 100% raw diet. I am inclined to advocate a 50% raw food intake to optimise human health and longevity.

CH: Sounds much easier to me!
It’s not just the raw bit that I do, or the juicing bit, it’s the whole thing!  I predict this year; we shall be reading more than ever in the Press about Gut Health, and its impact on your wellness and beauty. There are exciting times ahead...

The lovely Mr James is offering one lucky reader the opportunity to try his entire range of supplements. To enter simply use Rafflecopter below as per all of my giveaways.




a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thank you Chris - AND - If you are interested in juicing or further reading you can read more from Chris here:

http://www.chrisjamescleanse.com/blog/does-eating-raw-really-slow-the-ageing-process

http://www.chrisjamescleanse.com/blog/some-facts-about-raw-foodism  

And further info from Chris can be found here: www.chrisjamescleanse.com


AND: good news for London dwelling people - Chris's range is available in Whole Foods Kensington, Piccadilly and Richmond from next week.


37 comments:

  1. Hi Caroline/Chris, I'm interested in the whole detox/things getting worse before they get better thing - is this an actual thing? I added a green smoothie to my diet, just one every day/2 days and I had the most horrendous acne breakout EVER. Mainly on my forehead which I know is to do with diet/the gut. Is this something you should just push through or is it a sign the body doesn't agree with whatever you're doing? I understand this is smoothie rather than juice related but I figure it could be relevant to both!

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    1. Hi there, how people respond to a cleanse / detox will vary. This is why I recommend gentle structured cleanses: http://www.chrisjamescleanse.com/real-life-reviews.php
      I am sorry to hear about your break out - poor you! Sometimes things can get a bit worse, before they get better, so my advice would be to push through, it will all be worth it in the end! If however, your symptoms become very serious (which is actually highly unlikely on a gentle Cleanse) consult your general medical practitioner.

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  2. Great overview, I've always been curious about this

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  3. Very interesting!! Actually this post will be responsible for me giving juicing a try. Time to dust off the blender!!


    www.eclecticalu.blogspot.com

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    1. Go girl!! Let us know how you get on :-)

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  4. Confused because I was under the impression that you think detox, cleansing et al is BS?

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    1. I could be wrong, but I don't think you see the word 'detox' anywhere in this post!
      Juicing I am fine with. WITHIN REASON OBVS.

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    2. I agree, my responses here to CH, revolve around why juicing can be a healthy habit, and why 100% juice regimens are not the way forward in my opinion.

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    3. But Chris does talk about 'cleansing' isn't that the same thing?

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  5. Great info! I did hear what Chris says about the integrity of the enzymes dissipating by the time - however, most of us work away from home so juicing breakfast, lunch and a snack of raw veg and fruit isn't really an option. What does he recommend to keep the juices enzymes alive as long as possible? How to manage this?

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    1. Great - pleased that you like the info! Next best thing is to invest in some tupperware and bring into work! You can store in the fridge, but don't leave overnight - hope this helps? (You can also use a old press juicer - but it does take a while to juice things, which is the downside)

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    2. Thanks for the info Chris. Do you mean juice it at home in the morning and put the liquid in a tupperware (and try to have an early lunch!)? Could you share with us any recipes? :)

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  6. Not sure of the science about needing warm food to heat our kidneys but I will skip past that bit. An interesting read even so.

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    1. Yes I have to say that my eyebrow was raised at that point. I was under the impression that body heat was mostly provided through metabolic activity.

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  7. I always find it easiest to do a sort of elimination diet and focus on easily digested whole foods, with some vegan protein powder and juice. I've been able to do that for a solid month once when I was trying to figure out a food allergy situation.

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  8. Hi Caroline (This is the third time i've tried to publish this comment, so if it spams you I am sorry!!) I was just wondering if you had used the app Think Dirty? It basically takes a look at products and rates them on a scale of 1-10 (one being great and ten being worst) on how good/bad they are for your skin and body. Sunday Riley Good Genes comes out as a ten, but it is highly recommended from many bloggers. I was just wondering if you had seen the app and what your thoughts are on it? On another note, I recently blogged about your blog, because I love it that much and wanted to do a quick summary of what i have learnt from it. If youd like to read it by any small chance then heres the link https://mishmashtweets.wordpress.com/category/beauty-2/. Many thanks, Megan. x

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  9. This was really interesting to read. I'm not sure how I feel about pressed juices, as I feel you then miss a lot of the fibrous content of the fruits and vegetables that are good for you, but I am 100% for incorporating smoothies (and by smoothies I mean a bunch of fruit, vegetables, water/coconut water blended together) into my diet. As a busy university student, consuming large amounts of green vegetables is not something I want to do, so I add a lot to smoothies and it does't really affect the taste. I don't think a high percentage raw diet is good for you though, I have had multiple university professors who specialize in different areas talk about the fact that human bodies are not built to be able to gain the amount of nutrients from raw food as other animals, and it is really tough on our systems to break the food down fully so we can get all of the nutrients. It is apparently a kind of backwards evolution thing that because we are able to cook things and start the breakdown process earlier and make digestion easier, our bodies aren't particularly good at it anymore.

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    1. Hi Lisa, just to clarify - juicing veg and fruit, should not replace your regular fibrous diet. It's in addition to whole plant based foods. You focus on juicing when you are cleansing because the body needs to conserve energy a bit more than usual. Best wishes,

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  10. I really enjoyed reading this, I have a juicer, I've been throwing spinach in everything. EVERYTHING.

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  11. When I tried drinking homemade juice once a week I got upset stomach to a degree where I had to plan my day around toilet availability. I aimed at 80% vegetables, 20% fruit so have no idea what caused it. I think it's very important to listen to your body and choose almost instinctively what works. I naturally gravitate towards eating a lot of raw stuff once the weather warms up.

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    1. I'm so sorry to hear about your upset tummy when juicing - I think that you're right - it's best stick to knowing what you feel is best to eat, which of course includes raw foods etc...

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  12. Oh dear :(
    I really love this blog, but when I read an article like this based on bad science (or no science) it makes me question everything else on the blog.
    First of all - enzymes? Enzymes in plants have no effect on the human body. We produce our own digestive enzymes in the mouth, stomach, small intestine and pancreas that do a pretty good job - if you were deficient (usually due to serious illness such a Cystic Fibrosis), you'd need to go to a hospital, not drink juices!
    And you know where that juice goes first - to the stomach, a highly acidic environment that will denature these magic enzymes in the plant food anyway and render them ineffective.
    As for alkalinity - the pH of the body is tightly regulated, yes. A small deviation can lead to acidosis or alkalosis which have huge physiological effects and can lead to death. However NOTHING you eat can affect the pH of the blood, it is tightly regulated by a buffering system, the respiratory system and the kidneys. Your food passes through the mouth (alkaline) the stomach (highly acidic) to the small intestine (alkaline), and the presence of food, any food, stimulates secretion. The stomachs pH is 1.5 - 3.5 so unless you drink battery acid you're not going to put a dent in that. The pH of the urine can change and can be measured with litmus paper, but this just reflects waste products. Food does not change the pH of the body - the 'alkaline diet' is not based on any sound scientific evidence.
    Juicing in general I don't have any issue with – it can be a quick and easy way to get your nutrient, but it’s not the optimum way to take your fruit and veg. You're missing out on the fibre from the food which has huge health benefits in GI health, cholesterol lowering, preventing CVD, increasing satiety, and aiding weight control. If you're trying to lose weight, I wouldn't recommend juicing as you'll get all the calories with none of the satiety.
    Last amounts of juicing can cause gastric upset and osmotic diarrhoea in some people due to large concentration of fructose and other sugars in the GI tract.
    Cooking does destroy some of the water soluble vitamins in foods, better to lightly cook. Although conversely, cooking and pureeing releases more antioxidants such as beta-carotene and lycopene.
    As for warming the kidneys – try a hot water bottle.
    Sorry for the rant - I’m a dietitian – quackery annoys me as I’ve seen many patients who have done real harm to their health by following poor advice.

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    1. Hi Anon,

      Thank you for commenting. I remain 'reserved' as it were, like I said, my attempt at juicing was NOT the best - but I have a LOT of readers that swear by it. If people are interested in a topical point I will sometimes try to speak to leaders in their field - you are more than welcome to put a counter case if you want to email me. I'd love to have you.. X

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    2. YES! Thank you for posting a reply to this article, I was also a shocked to see this pseudoscience on Caroline's (normally impeccable) blog. Please take Caroline's offer up to formally offer your counter argument, and perhaps also talk about foods we can eat for better skin :)

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    3. THANK YOU Anon. I started reading this article, got veerrrryy frustrated at the dodgy science and had to check out the comments to see if anyone else's 'science' button was flashing. I didn't study dietetics, but my first degree at uni was heavily biology-focused, and I'd agree with your comment, just want to add a couple of extra points!

      Firstly, any enzymes that exist in plants/vegetables are concerned with converting the food that plants 'eat' (such as nitrogenous compounds, sugars, water etc) into molecules that plants can use. They are highly specific to the environment found in plants, and won't work in the human body - as Anon mentioned, they will be denatured (i.e. stop working) in the stomach because of both the stomach's high acidity and high temperature relative to that found in vegetables - show me a plant that maintains a constant temperature of 37 degrees celsius and the Day of the Triffids will have dawned. The body breaks DOWN vegetables in our digestive system into all kinds of molecules and components such as proteins, and then uses them in the pancreas, etc. to BUILD enzymes which we then use.
      Secondly - 'active' enzymes? All enzymes are active (i.e. working) unless denatured.
      Thirdly - enzymes are veeeerrryyy small (microscopic), so I highly doubt cutting vegetables would do ANYTHING to them, never mind the fact that we don't use those enzymes anyway.
      Fourthly - like Anon said, we do not use food to directly 'warm' our organs, our body does that perfectly well for us.

      So, yes - apologies for the rant, but I had to get it out! I'm certainly not anti-juices or cleanses at all, anything that gets a good variety of fruit and veg into your body is a good thing. Just when people start spouting utter balderdash and try to pass it off as reputable science, I get very angry - especially on this blog, where I generally trust Caroline knows what she's saying and has researched it. Otherwise, loving the blog Caroline - you have helped my skin no end! I used to be one of those people that just used a face wipe and nothing else, now I'm cleansing, using serum, moisturising - bought my first facial oil today, can't wait to try it out!

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    4. Hey I'm ALL for rants. Well, polite well thought-out ones... :)
      I agree. I couldn't do it. I tried, my body was having none of it. Like I said in the opening paragraph though, a LOT of my readers swear by it - this was more for them than me trying to persuade people to juice :) xx

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    5. Thank you anonymous. I have read a number of 'health" articles that use pseudoscience and sigh at all the misinformation around. I think that if you want to lose weight/change your diet/eat healthy-rather then trying the newest diet/fad consider seeing a Dietician (who is trained and registered) rather then a nutritionist.

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  13. I've just started juicing over the last few weeks or sometimes smoothies instead (bit too cold for those right now!) and I love it! I try to have a juice most days and thankfully I've not had any bad experiences from it. I love adding ginger, kale etc. I like the idea of boosting my nutrition with good things and I've been trying to learn more about it. I'm not switching over to a set 'diet' as such but just improving mine : )

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  14. I met an NHS dietician who seriously advised her underweight patients to eat cream cakes to "just get the calories in". Have also had the misfortune of trying some hospital food which I guess is "supposed" to help speed recovery but was so overcooked and full of refined carbs and sugars that it probably had the opposite effect. I would advise juicing as a supplement to "clean eating" ( google it) bearing in mind that the nutritional values of our fruit and veg are much lower than they were in say the 1940s. I do agree that juice fasts are a bit extreme and not ideal unless you are close to a toilet 24/7! :-)

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  15. Isn't it best to nourish your liver and kidneys so they can do their job - which is to remove toxins?

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  16. Ohhhhh dear, as an actual biologist, the number of people going on about "cleansing" (just another name for 'detox') and juice fasts and 'raw food' whatever just makes me want to cry.

    Okay, so, yes, in a number of fruits and vegetables, there are more vitamins (I'm not touching "enzymes" because that's another load of bull) if the item is raw. HOWEVER, as we are not herbivores and do not have the complex, extensive guts that herbivores do, WE CANNOT ACCESS all that good stuff unless the vegetable has been (lightly) cooked. So, raw veggies have more vitamins, but as you cannot break down the cellulose to get at them, you net more if you apply heat. We've been cooking food for millions of years, since before we were even this species. It's a vital part of our digestive system.

    "Cleansing". Your body does not need you to do "cleansing" or "detox" fasts. That's what your liver and kidneys are for. They "cleanse" your body.

    DO NOT DO JUICE FASTS OMG. Your body is capable of storing glucose for a short time and fats long term. It cannot store protein. If you do not eat protein, your body cannibalizes itself because it. needs. protein. And by cannibalizes itself I mean it starts breaking down muscle tissue. Including your heart. Don't do it.

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    1. See this makes perfect sense to me - I go into this frustrated rage when brands talk about 'plant stem cells' that 'help regenerate our cells!'. Utter bollocks. It's a plant. Not human. I meant what I said to the commenter above, you are more than welcome to be in a post with the counter argument - any time. 👍👍

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  17. Please don't cry! ( have a Krispy Kreme and a latte, it's alreet pet!)

    There are plenty of good protein sources on raw diets so no-one needs to go without protein. Advocados and almonds are full of protein. What juicing can do is boost your overall micronutrient intake ( alongside a balanced "clean eating" diet).

    Life's to short to starve on juice only protocols but we are only just discovering some of the many nutritional benefits of plants (sterols etc) so it's a bit disappointing when conventional medicine dismisses them as quackery or pseudoscience.

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  18. Clean eating? Sorry - my food is only dirty if it falls on the floor. (Even then - 3 second rule applies)

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  19. "In Western Europe, we need warming foods in the colder winter months in order to provide warmth for the kidneys amongst other things!" Please dear God let this be a metaphor I didn't understand. Provide warmth for the kidneys?

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