Juicing Q&A: Which juicer do you recommend?

I’ve been flooded with juicing questions ever since I started sharing my juice fast experiences on theglobalgirl.com and my various social media platforms. One of my New Year resolutions is to take, from time to time, an hour or two out of my 18-hour days :-) to start answering the gazillion requests I’m receiving on a daily basis and start updating my juicing page.

So here we go!

Question from Melena:

Thank you, Ndoema. I am starting this year on a journey of renewal and reflection. Accordingly, I want to improve my health. I want to start juicing and try my first short juice fast.

I’ve been researching juicers. My head is spinning from all the reviews. There are some juicers that are better for only fruits, but some juicers that do not juice leafy greens very well. Do you have any recommendations? Given that you’ve completed two 92-day juice fasts, I know you have a dependable juicer.

This is by far the most common question I get and I understand why. A dependable, high performing juicer is the building block of a successful juice fast but researching juicers can easily become a full time job! I did a lot of research myself before zeroing on the two juicers that have been my steadfast companions on the extended juice fasts I’ve undertaken.

What first motivated me to start juicing “seriously” was Fresh Vegetable and Fruit Juices by Norman Walker. I knew about juicing and its health benefits but no one so far as I knew, had taken such a quasi scientific approach to it. In his book, Walker stresses the important of the right kind of extraction in order to maximize on the benefits derived from the fruits and veggies. He invented the first “masticating” juicer which is considered optimum in that it not only yields more juice, but also retains more enzymes by slow crushing the fruits and veggies, rather than high-speed spinning which runs the risk of overheating the essential enzymes and diminishing their potency. I was sold but frankly I felt that buying a $2000 Norwalk Juicer was a bit overkill (hello? I can get a killer pair of thigh-high suede Nicholas Kirkwood boots for that!) so instead I zeroed in on an Omega masticating juicer, and I’ve been pleased with it for years.

That said, when I decided to embark on my first 92-day juice fast I felt that I needed an upgrade because making large quantities of juice with the Omega (I needed to make a couple gallons a day) was just too time consuming. With the Omega, the produce has to be chopped really small (the mouth is tiny) and it juices slowly. Let’s face it, living on juices for three months is a commitment, so I wanted to make it as painless as possible.

I researched the next best “masticating” option and that’s when I discovered the Hurom. I loooove it. It made juicing a breeze. The mouth is much larger than the Omega and requires zero elbow grease. For my first 92-day juice fast, I was really drawn to fruit juices, I did a little green juice at the beginning but I ended up flying with the melons (especially watermelon juice!) and I could literally make a couple gallons in fifteen minutes.

For my second 92-juice fast, I felt that I needed to amp up my green juice intake and that is when I was faced with the realization that the Hurom and high fiber vegetables (especially those wonderful leafy greens) do not mesh well. The fiber jams up the masticating mechanism and the juice gets abnormally foamy. So while the Hurom is absolutely fantastic with most fruits, it’s unfortunately way less impressive with leafy greens.

Being a minimalist, I’m constantly looking for ways to simplify and unclutter my life, so collecting gadgets isn’t on my priority list. But I have to say that adding the Breville to my juicing team has been a decision I haven’t regretted for an instant. The Breville is absolutely amazing in the green juice department. It makes the best tasting green juice hands down, and in record time. It’s got the largest size mouth I’ve ever come across so I can literally drop in large size beets, a whole bunch of carrots or an entire head of celery at a time. This alone has made a huge difference in me sticking to my gallon-a-day green juice commitment.

Now unlike the Hurom, the Breville is a centrifugal juicer which as I’ve said isn’t considered “optimum”. But hey, I’m the pragmatic type. If I have to choose between a gallon a day of green juice that might not be 100% enzyme-friendly, versus no green juice at all because it’s just too big a pain to make, or the result isn’t very palatable. Well, my choice is made.

While purchasing two mondo machines like these is definitely a commitment, with all the benefits I’ve received from my extended juice fasts, I can attest to the fact that they’ve been worth every single penny. That said, if you feel like the majority of your juice intake will be derived from fruits, I would say go with the Hurom. You will get the best quality juice with ease. If you lean towards low glycemic juices, or you’re just really more into juicing leafy greens and/or high fiber veggies, then I’d recommend the Breville.

But if you want to give juicing a try, yet aren’t ready to invest into heavy duty juicers, I would recommend starting out with a series of short orange-juice fasts. It’s an amazing way to get a feel for juicing (and get tons of benefits), and that can be done on a very inexpensive citrus juicer. I’ve happily used this Black & Decker citrus juicer for short-term fasts ranging from one to ten days. And I’ve benefited tremendously from them. The orange juice fast is deceivingly powerful. I get strong detox symptoms as early as day one, meaning it gets to work right away! I do these orange juice fast “re-sets” periodically and they’re truly wonderful.

One last note, I think it’s important to mention that the Breville isn’t suited to making wheatgrass juice but the Hurom is.

So, here you have it! Here’s a recap of my 92-Day juice fast dream team:

- Hurom HU-100 Slow Juicer

- Breville 800JEXL Juice Fountain Elite 1000-Watt Juice Extractor

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