MENU

Benefits of juicing during cancer treatment

What if instead of reaching for your coffee maker for your morning cup o' joe, you fired up a juicer to make a nutrient-dense drink?

Juicing has gotten a lot of attention in the past decade with every other celebrity and influencer touting their juicing cleanses and their “expertise.”

You can even find stores that have juice bars and refrigerated shelves lined with fresh-pressed colorful juices. If going to the store is not for you, some companies deliver to your front doorstep for a cost.  

So, what’s with all the hype, and how healthy is juicing for you? We will cannonball into the many ins and outs of juicing to answer all your juicy-juicing questions.

What is juicing? 

Juicing requires using a juicer or press that removes the fiber, skin, and pulp from fruits and vegetables and extracts all the juicy goodness out into a liquid form. It’s an easy way to get an added variety of fruits and vegetables into your diet. 

Do you eat an average of 5-9 servings of assorted fruits and vegetables daily? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), only 1 in 10 adults meet the recommended daily fruit and vegetable consumption. [1]

Most of us tend to eat the same mundane fruit and veggies every day. The best way to eat fruits and vegetables is the old-fashioned way, by mouth, but adding juice to a healthy diet can be a great way to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your diet. 

Studies have shown that adding juice to a balanced diet offered a profound risk reduction of many diseases, such as cancers, neurodegenerative diseases, and cardiovascular diseases. This is because of the high antioxidant properties that they possess, which may help lower oxidative stressors. [2]

Benefits of juicing

Studies suggest that vegetable juice may help reduce blood pressure. This is because of the polyphenols that are in the juice may cause a decrease in blood pressure. Furthermore, nitrates and minerals also have essential roles in the anti-hypertensive (lowering blood pressure) effects of vegetable juice. [2]

Juicing has also shown to help aid in reducing cholesterol. Five different studies on several fruits and vegetables all showed levels of cholesterol were lowered after consuming the drinks. The studies were done on orange juice, acai-berry based juice, cloudy apple juice, cranberry juice, and tomato juice. [2]

Inflammation is related to many chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease. Studies related to cardiovascular inflammation done on certain juices such as tomato, plum, peach, and cranberry, all of which resulted in a reduction of cardiovascular-related inflammation. This is significant when we are talking about the prevention of chronic diseases because inflammation can be a big problem, and if not addressed in the long term, can develop into more pertinent diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and even cancer. [2]

Another noteworthy benefit is because since the insoluble fiber is removed in the juicing process, this can help aid in digestion. People who have issues digesting fruits and vegetables might find juicing can help them incorporate more of the nutrient-dense foods into their diets while giving their digestive systems a break. [3]

When you add juicing to a healthy diet it can be a powerful tool. There are many benefits to juicing, such as prevention of disease, lowering blood pressure, lowering cholesterol, reducing inflammation, and aiding digestion. [2, 3] By adding a plethora of colorful fruits and vegetables to your juices, you are adding more raw minerals and nutrients to your overall diet, which you otherwise might not have.  

Risks of juicing

There are always risks to anything and everything – sewing, for instance. You may get impaled by sharp needle, which may carry a microscopic bacterium, and your finger might have to be amputated (dramatic, I know). So, what are the risks involved with juicing?

Let's talk about sugar, the natural kind found in all fruits and vegetables. Fruits contain more natural sugar then veggies, and too much sugar can be an issue, especially if you have diabetes. Most people would never sit down and eat 5 apples in one sitting, but those same 5 apples can easily fit into one glass when juiced. We shall do the math!

One apple has about 10 grams of sugar, and if you multiply that by 5 apples for a glass of fresh apple juice, this makes a total of 50 grams of sugar. [2] For further perspective, one 12oz can of Coca-Cola has 39 grams of sugar, so our same glass of apple juice contains more sugar than a Coke! [4] This amount of sugar can cause your blood sugar levels to spike, and if you have issues with insulin production, this can be a significant issue.

The takeaway from this is to limit the fruits you are adding to your juices. A good ratio of vegetables to fruits is 3 to 1, 3 vegetables to 1 fruit. You can also benefit from choosing low glycemic fruits such as green apples, berries, lemons, and limes. [5]

Did you know kale and spinach contain high levels of Vitamin K? However, if you are on a prescribed blood thinner, such as warfarin, high levels of Vitamin K can affect how a blood thinner works. [6] If you are on any medications, it's always important to check with your physician or pharmacist when making a dietary change for any potential problems.     

We need fiber in our diets. If you are only juicing and not eating any fruits or vegetables, you are missing out on essential nutrients and fiber.

“Fruit and vegetables are naturally loaded with dietary fiber. Fiber cannot be broken down by the body and mainly stays intact when it passes through your stomach, intestines, and colon. Fiber plays an essential role in maintaining good gut health (normalizing and maintaining bowel health). Fiber also lowers cholesterol levels, controls blood sugar levels, aids in achieving or maintaining a healthy weight, and may even help you live longer.” [7] 

A study was conducted in 2016 on the relationship between breast cancer and fiber intake. Twenty-four articles examined the link between dietary fiber and breast cancer. “A total of 51,939 cases and 3,662,421 participants were included. The analysis showed a protective association between dietary fiber intake and breast cancer risk, and the danger could be reduced by 12%. Furthermore, the data showed each 10 g/d increment of dietary fiber intake was associated with a 4% risk reduction.” [8]

Which type of juicer is best? 

The two most common types of juicers are centrifugal and masticating juicers. Both can be found in stores and online, and you can typically find a juicer that will fit into any budget with pricing anywhere from $50 to more than $2,000.

So which one is better? That is up to the consumer (and your budget), but we will hit the highlights regarding both types of juicers and also give our recommendations. 

Centrifugal Juicer

  • Produce is fed into the hopper and ground to a pulp.
  • Spins at high speed, and the motion forces the juice away from the pulp.
  • The high speed can cause the juice to oxidize quickly, so you will want to consume the juice immediately.
  • The high speeds can cause friction heating the juices, and this can cause loss of some of the live enzymes.
  • On the cheaper end of the budget spectrum [5]

Masticating Juicer

  • Masticating means to “chew, grind, or knead”
  • Works at lower speeds than a centrifugal juicer preventing the juice from picking up any heat (as with centrifugal juicers).
  • Is very good for juicing leafy greens and vegetables efficiently 
  • Will yield more juice with less produce 
  • Since it works at lower speeds and does not oxidize as much, juice can be stored in an airtight container refrigerated for up to 24 hours.  [5]
  • Some masticating juicers add a hydraulic press (cold press) which helps in extracting the maximum amount of juice, as well as other benefits.

Juicer options

To-do’s of juicing

Now that we know all the benefits and risks of juicing, it’s time to talk about best practices. Anytime you want to succeed at anything, you have to be in the “know-how,” and we are here to serve it to you on a silver platter.  

Do eat fruits and veggies in their whole forms first

We talked before about how fruits and vegetables are best when consumed in their whole form, including the fiber. With that said, adding juice to your diet is a great way to add those extra nutrients you otherwise would not get. Simply enjoy them alongside your meals. 

Do wash your produce

This also goes without saying, but you always want to wash your produce. When you buy your juices at the supermarket, they are pasteurized, killing any bacteria and parasites that might be harmful to you. Even if it's organic, you still are making an unpasteurized drink, and you are at a higher risk of consuming parasites and bacteria that are living on the food. 

Simply soak your produce in cold water mixed with white distilled vinegar (10 cups water to 1 cup vinegar) for a few minutes, scrub with a vegetable brush, rinse, and dry. [5] A good soak and scrub can save you from time spent in the bathroom.

Do refrigerate your juices

If you are not consuming your juicy goodness right away, you can store it in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 24 hours. Freezing is another option as well. 

Do be heavy on your veggies

Not to sound like a broken record, but do be heavy on your veggies. Fruits contain more sugar than vegetables, so a good ratio is the three vegetables to 1 fruit rule.  Fruits are a great source of antioxidantsProtects cells from damage caused by free radicals (unstable molecules made by the process of oxidation during normal metabolism). Free radicals may play a part in cancer, heart disease, stroke, and other diseases of aging. Antioxidants include beta-carotene, lycopene, Vitamins A, C, and E, and other natural and manufactured substances. and help sweeten up your drinks, just try not to overdo it. [2]

Do buy organic if you can

“Nearly 70 percent of the fresh produce sold in the U.S. contains residues of potentially harmful chemical pesticides, according to EWG’s analysis of the latest test data from the federal Department of Agriculture.” [9]

It may not always be available, but when possible, you should try to stick to organic produce. An excellent example of why you want to stick to organic foods is kale. Kale, which is rich in vitamins and antioxidants, is a commonly juiced vegetable and ranks number three on the EWG’s dirty dozen list this year. 

“In USDA’s most recent tests, the pesticide most frequently detected on kale was DCPA, sold under the brand name Dacthal. The Environmental Protection Agency classifies DCPA as a possible human carcinogen, and in 2009 the European Union banned it.” [9]

Juicing recipes

If you are just getting started with juicing and need a little guidance, we have your back with a few of our fail-proof recipes. However, the great thing about juicing is you really can't mess it up and should try adding a variety of different fruits and vegetables to find what best suits your taste buds and your body.

The Energizer
6 Carrots
1 lemon
1 Inch of Ginger
2 Green Apples
1 Beet (you can even juice the top if you want more added nutrients)
Wash and juice all the above in your favorite juicer, no peeling required.

Super Greens
6 leaves of Kale
2 Cups Spinach
2 Green Apples
1 Inch of Ginger
1 Lemon
1 Cucumber 
Wash and juice all the above in your favorite juicer, no peeling required.

FAQs

What is juicing? 

Juicing is the process of removing the fiber, skin, and pulp from fruits and vegetables and extracts all the juice out into a liquid form.

What is a centrifugal juicer?

A centrifugal juicer spins at high speed, and the motion forces the juice away from the pulp.

Which juicer is best? Masticating or centrifugal?

That is up to the consumer and your budget.

What is a masticating juicer?

Masticating means to “chew, grind, or knead” and mimics the grinding motion to press juices from the pulp

Is juicing good to add to a cancer diet?

Yes, juicing can be a useful tool to add to a cancer diet. However, this should not replace your regular fruit and vegetable intake.

Cancer protocols

The majority of alternative protocols, such as the Gerson diet, the Cellect Budwig diet, Chris Wark's Square One program, the Bob Beck protocol, along with many others, have juicing as an essential component in their treatments. Many holistic clinics also include some form of juicing.

Clinics that offer
Nutritional Therapy

Cancer Tutor Verified

Clinics

Continue With Step 3

References

  1. Only 1 in 10 Adults Get Enough Fruits or Vegetables. https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2017/p1116-fruit-vegetable-consumption.html
  2. Effects and Mechanisms of Fruit and Vegetable Juices on Cardiovascular Diseases. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5372571/
  3. Juice Cleanse: The Pros and Cons of a Juicing Diet. https://draxe.com/nutrition/juice-cleanse/
  4. How much sugar in Coke is there? https://www.coca-colaproductfacts.com/en/faq/sugar/how-much-sugar-in-coke/
  5. Juicing for Cancer. https://www.cancertutor.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Juicing-for-Cancer_compressed.pdf
  6. Juicing for Health and Weight Loss. https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/juicing-health-risks-and-benefits#2
  7. Is the raw food diet right for you? https://www.cancertutor.com/rawfood/
  8. Dietary fiber intake and risk of breast cancer: A systematic review and meta-analysis of epidemiological studies. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5348370/
  9. EWG’g 2020 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce. https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary.php