Juicing Craze in the Kitchen

One of the latest health "crazes" that has cycled around again (because, let's face it, this is nothing new) is juicing. The extent of my juicing was a little hand juicer to juice citrus fruits. Itave me a sore wrist.

My husband and I first got interested in "real" juicing last month while visiting with friends. They had been juicing for a few months. Not only did they see a difference on the scale, but a huge difference in how they felt in general.

There are many types of juicers on the market right now. Think of these questions when investing in a juicer: How committed will I be to juicing? How often will I be juicing? What fruits and veggies to I want to juice?

Upon researching juicers, I found just over 4,000 juicers listed. Some features that you need to think about include centrifugal force (is the juice spun outward to extract?), Mastication (how is the juice crushed and, well, juiced?), Gears (how many times do you want?), And manual (do you want to do the work yourself?).

Another factor to consider is cost. How much do you want to spend on a juicer? Is this a lifestyle you will be committing to? Is this juicer just needed for a few cups of OJ on the weekends? I found a Black and Decker 30 Watt juicer on Amazon for under $ 15.00. Not bad! I also found some commercial-grade juicers for over over $ 400. It just depends on your needs and how committed you are.

There are some important factors you need to keep in mind when looking for a reliable juicer. What are the materials it is made from? If it's mostly plastic, chances are it might stain or crack over time. If it's stainless steel, that's much easier to clean, though you need to look at the seams as those can harbor unwanted bacteria. Being dishwasher safe (even on the top rack) is a great feature to have. How are the "leftovers" of the produce collected? Is it a messy clean-up? By the way, those leftovers are great for compost piles if you're a gardener!

I will share with you our favorite juice blend as of yet. Keep in mind we're new to juicing and have not tried too many things! But we have our own version of the Green Machine Juice that we have at lunch time. I will juice for both of us in the morning so that our "lunch" is ready when we are! (Word to the wise: shake well! All the good stuff floats to the top in some weird foamy concoction!)
Gadget Gal's Green Machine (makes 25-30 ounces)

5 leaves of kale
1 orange
2 green apples
2 carrots
2 celery stalks
1 generous slice of fresh ginger
C cucumber
hand of spinach

Juice it, baby! And feel clean and refreshed!