Juice bars are America’s new health craze. There are now multiple competing locations in malls and busy street-sides across the country, all promising a nutritious and refreshing pick-me-up.
However, while fresh, organic smoothies and juices are excellent for your health, many juice bars and establishments add an overload of sugar, as well as processed additives, to their concoctions.
The evils of sugar are relatively well-known. An excess of sugar can lead to a crash later in the day, leaving you tired and devoid of motivation. Additionally, sugar can feed candida (yeast) in the body, and also disrupt hormonal balance. It can also sometimes lead to system-wide inflammation.
In the case of many juice bars, the juices used as smoothie and juice blend bases come from concentrate. Concentrated juices are packed full of sugar, and are pasteurized, destroying most of the health benefits that raw, organic juices have to offer.
The smoothies offered at juice bars, while on the surface scrumptiously healthy, often contain canned frozen fruits, packaged powders, frozen yogurts and boxed soy or nut milks. Canned frozen fruits are full of sugar, as are frozen yogurts. Boxed milks and packaged powders often contain processed vegetable oils that have been refined and bleached, which can cause inflammation and are all-around detrimental to health.
Some of the powders used by juice bars, such as protein powders, are fortified with nutrients. However, these added nutrients are in synthetic form, and are much more difficult for the body to process than their natural counterparts.
Without the added sugar and synthetic additions, juices and smoothies are a wonderful way to enjoy organic fruits and vegetables. Your best bet is to make your own at home. That way, you know exactly what is going into your body. Stevia leaf is a great sweetener for your home creations, as long as it has no added ingredients when sold in powdered form. Or you can use an extra apple. Organic milk, coconut water, and green tea are great choices for your smoothie bases.
If you do visit the juice bar, ask about the ingredients to make sure that only real, unprocessed foods go into your cup. Otherwise, what you are drinking may do more harm than good.
– The Alternative Daily