Health Benefits of Juicing - For Seniors!Last Updated: May 24, 2018
We've discussed this problem before in previous articles, but it's important enough to bear repeating: seniors are one of the populations most vulnerable to malnutrition. But there are things that senior citizens can do in order to combat this problem effectively. Juicing fruits and vegetables is the newest method people are using to supplement their micronutrient intake. And this method can be especially beneficial to seniors. if you're a senior citizen who is worried about your nutrition, or if there's a senior in your life who you want to make sure gets all the nutrients they need to stay as healthy as they can, then this article is for you.
The Importance of Juicing for Seniors
Certain physical changes can make it difficult for seniors to eat as healthy as they did when they were younger. Juicing can be a quick, convenient, and even tasty way to supplement the nutrition that they aren't getting from their food. But you have to make sure you have the right ingredients in order to maximize the nutritional power of your juices. Next, we'll talk about different ingredients that you should make sure are included in some or all of your juice recipes.
Nutritious Ingredients for Seniors to Add to Their Juices
When you start juicing, whether for yourself or the beloved senior in your life, try to include as many of the following ingredients as you can. But don't follow the same boring recipe each time; that's the fastest way to lose enthusiasm for juicing more nutrition into your life. Feel free to mix, match, or even experiment with adding your own unique ingredients!
- Dark, leafy greens (such as spinach, kale, and/or chard leaves): dark green vegetables are high in magnesium, lutein, calcium, vitamin K, folate, and antioxidant plant compounds. Without going into too much boring detail, all of these nutrients are essential for optimal health. On top of that, most people - especially seniors - have massive deficiencies of all of these nutrients.
- Avocado: contains high levels of potassium, vitamin E, and healthy monounsaturated fat, which enhances nutritional absorption. It also adds a yummy, buttery taste to your juice!
- Berries: dark, colorful berries such as blackberries, blueberries, red grapes, or raspberries, contain flavonoids. These healthy plant compounds protect against oxidative stress and reduce inflammation.
- Colorful Vegetables: this includes carrots, tomatoes, beets, or even bell peppers. These vegetables are high in vitamin A and antioxidants such as lycopene and beta carotene.
- Celery: celery provides electrolytes to avoid dehydration as well as decreasing inflammation with antioxidant plant compounds.
- Citrus: lemons, limes, oranges, or grapefruits add flavor and vitamins to your juice smoothies.
- Flax Seeds: flax seeds contain fiber and plant omega-3 fatty acids, which are highly anti-inflammatory.
- Flavorful Herbs: try adding mint, parsley, and more to your juice recipe. They not only provide nice flavors to make juices more palatable, but they also contain plant polyphenols which are extremely healthful in the same way flavonoids are.
- Probiotics: fermented food products such as yogurt or kefir contain healthy bacteria cultures which are essential for good digestion and nutrient absorption. Just make sure you save the addition of these ingredients for juices and smoothies which will be consumed right away without leaving any leftovers behind. This ensures that the greatest number of healthful bacteria end up in your gut where they belong.
A Beginner's Guide to Smoothie Recipes
Okay, so maybe you're not the experimental type. Maybe standing alone in the produce section of your grocery store and looking at all of the available fruits and vegetables has you a little confused about where to start. This is perfectly normal. For this reason, we're going to include a few starter recipes and essential ingredients. once you get comfortable with these recipes, You'll eventually get brave enough to concoct your own juicy mixes!
Sweet Cucumber Delight
This recipe is great for a hot summer day, or immediately after you get done with an intense workout. Not only is it chock-full of micronutrients to keep you or your favorite senior healthy, but it also contains lots of electrolytes to keep elderly people hydrated. To prepare: chop all of the ingredients below into large chunks, place into your blender or juicer, and blend until your juice is ready.
- 4 handfuls of spinach
- 3 celery ribs
- 2 cucumbers
- The juice of 1 Lime
- 2 small apples
Minty-Fresh Fruit Smoothie
Spinach shouldn't have all the fun in your blender. For extra nutrition, you're going to need some kale - and lots of it! This recipe includes nutritional powerhouses (such as kale) along with the sweetness of citrus fruits.
- 1 cucumber
- 1 Granny Smith apple
- 1 cup of chopped pineapple
- 3 kale leaves
- 1 small handful of chopped mint
- the juice from 1/2 of a lemon
The Berry, Berry Quite Contrary
This recipe combines the sweetness and the antioxidant healing properties of common, delicious berries with the tart, tangy taste of rainbow chard. If chard leaves are out of season near you, or are difficult to find, consider substituting regular Swiss chard or beets (including the leaves and stems).
- 1/2 cup blueberries
- 1/2 cup raspberries
- 1/2 cup orange juice (or juice from a fresh orange)
- 4-6 rainbow chard leaves
If you're a senior citizen who's having trouble getting more "rabbit food" into your diet, consider drinking your salad-friendly vegetables in juice form instead of going to all the trouble of preparing a fresh one. This juice will be richer in flavor and less sweet than other recipes, but it packs a serious nutritional punch!
The Basic Beginner Smoothie
If all of this still seems a tad overwhelming, do not fret. You can warm up by sticking to our Basic Beginner Smoothie recipe. It contains the three most important ingredients in any smoothie for optimal nutritional health:
- Spinach - Every healthy juice should start with a leafy green base. Yours doesn't necessarily have to be spinach, but it is usually the cheapest and most available option. Spinach also contains so many vital nutrients that it cannot be ignored.
- Blueberries - The darker the berry, the healthier the juice. Dark berries, like blueberries, contain the highest amounts of flavonoids and antioxidants compared to other fruits.
- Carrots - Don't let fruit have all the fun! You need more vegetables in your diet, too. In addition to adding much-needed fiber to your juice, carrots contain vitamins that are great for your eyes, your skin, and your immune system.
Of course, even if you can afford to buy out the entire produce section at your local grocery store, it still involves a lot of time-consuming prep work to make each fresh juice recipe. Many people choose the convenience of super green smoothie powders Instead of buying and prepping all of their fruits and vegetables from scratch. Super greens contain lots of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and even probiotics for optimal health. They add a powerful dose of nutrition to your juices and smoothies for a fraction of the cost and inconvenience associated with preparing your own fresh ingredients. But whether you juice from scratch or buy supplemental nutrition powders (or both), we hope we've given seniors the information they need to start juicing - and improving their lives!