Store-Bought Juice Labels Busted!

Fresh real juice in Tampa, Florida

Juicing at home may be fast and easy, but it does require cleanup, leading many to cut out the work by purchasing juice from the store. One of my clients found me because she had made exactly this mistake: She bought a bottle of juice, drank it happily, and then looked at the label. That bottle of green juice contained more sugar than two regular sodas! To add insult to injury, that juice was part of a line of prepackaged cleanses. Don’t make the same mistake.

Here’s what you should know about less-than-fresh juice.

  • 100% Juice doesn’t mean much. Food companies can legally print “100% Juice” on their labels while still including additives, flavorings and preservatives (not to mention a lot of added sugar and salt).
  • Key minerals, vitamins and live enzymes are destroyed by the pasteurization process most juices go through – and if that doesn’t do it, keeping juice on the shelf for days will!
  • “Not from Concentrate” juice often still uses “flavor packs” to add flavor back in after a lengthy storage process.
  • Even in juices labeled “All Natural,” synthetic ingredients may be hidden, like Fibersol-2, Fructooligosaccharides, or Inulin. Naked Juice was sued for using “All Natural” in their label while containing all of these ingredients.

It’s okay, you don’t have to clean your juicer to reap the benefits of fresh juice (even if it does just take a few seconds to rinse after use!). We have all the fresh, low-sugar, super-food-power-packed, straight-from-the-organic-farm juice you want. We carefully compose each juice recipe to maximize health benefits and flavor – and, you’re invited to check out our labels any time. We know you’ll like what you see and love what you taste!

4 Juices to Help You Touch Your Toes Without Pain

juice for flexibility and inflammation reduction

I once heard a yoga instructor say “You’re only as young as your spine is flexible.” Well, that woman was a grandmother and didn’t look a day past 40! I’d say she’s onto something. While yoga and exercise, or even chasing after grandchildren, can help your muscles stay in shape, flexibility needs more than exercise: Flexibility also relies on reducing inflammation. These four juices do just that, making your daily exercise routine feel easier, and helping you to touch your toes without pain.

Beet juice is rich in nitrates, which our bodies convert to nitrites, which dilate blood vessels and increase blood flow. The result: More stamina! Your muscles need less oxygen to do the same amount of work, making exercise feel less difficult. This is definitely the juice to drink before CrossFit!

Can’t Beet the Staying Power Recipe

  • 1 beet
  • 4 stalks celery
  • 1/2′ ginger
  • 1 stalk kale
  • 1 green apple

Green juice, using kale, spinach, chard, broccoli and celery, improves flexibility through its high water content and ability to cleanse acids from the body. It’s the perfect breakfast for that early morning pilates class.

Hydrating Green Juice

  • 2 red chard leaves
  • 3 kale stalks
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 cup broccoli
  • 1 apple or pear

Barley grass juice or powder contains the stretchy trifecta of beta carotene, iron and calcium which work together to improve flexibility and total body health. It’s a wonderful addition to your favorite juice, but on its own, it tastes a lot like…well, grass.

Turmeric juice, or powder, as an additive to any of your favorite juices, is one of the most powerful anti-inflammatories out there. Inflammation not only reduces flexibility, but has also been linked to a wide range of health problems, from arthritis to obesity. Bonus: Turmeric also acts as an anti-depressant, giving a mood boost to your day! I like to drink this for dessert to ensure sweet dreams and a good night’s rest.

Turmeric Milk Recipe

  • 2 cups almond/hemp milk
  • 2 dates pitted
  • 1 tbsp raw honey
  • 1/2 tbsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil

And yes, you can combine these four ingredients together for one incredible pre-workout drink!

Beat the Bloat with Juice!

Juice for bloating

No one really wants to talk about bloating – that horrible feeling of being filled with air, or retained water – but I bet you’d like to know how to stop it. Nothing is more maddening when you’ve achieved a beach-ready body than experiencing bloating, right ladies? So here’s the skinny on getting rid of bloating for good.

1. Find the source

Bloating happens when there is excess gas in your intestines, or when you’re retaining water. Sometimes these can result from hormonal shifts that are out of your control, but usually, the instigators are well within your power to stop. Diets high in salt and processed foods tend to cause water retention, since the salt dehydrates your body’s tissues (causing cells to soak up fluid like little sponges until the salt is flushed out). And, drinking too much alcohol or soft drinks can fill you up with air. Cut out processed foods and drink less, and you’ll not only beat the bloat, you’ll look and feel better too!

2. Juice it out

Lemon: When drinking water doesn’t work quite fast enough to flush out the bloating culprits, try adding lemon. It’s a natural laxative and diuretic that helps remove excess salt from your body.

Cucumber: Cucumber is another great juice for beating bloat since it already contains a lot of water and is a natural diuretic.

Dandelion greens: Dandelion is wonderful for detoxing your body and is an anti-inflammatory. So if toxins or inflammation are irritating your digestive tract, juice some greens along with your lemon and cucumber. Hey, this is starting to sound like a great recipe!

3. Exercise

Stay moving throughout the day, and excess air won’t have a chance to sit in your stomach! It’s all part of a healthy lifestyle.

You know what else is part of a healthy lifestyle? Intelligent Gourmet! When was the last time you dropped by?

The Juice is Loose! The Rising Popularity of Juicing

Fresh Juice, Intelligent Gourmet

For something that is essentially cold, juice is hotter than ever. Juice shops are springing up on every corner, like Starbucks in the ‘90s. A New York Times article, “The Juice-Bar Brawl” says it best:

“Half a decade ago, most people who were found guzzling and gushing about juice – not grocery store O.J., but the dense, cold-pressed stuff that is made by pulverizing mounds of ingredients like kale, beets, ginger, spinach and kohlrabi – were either zealots from the raw-food fringe or Hollywood celebrities who believed that a ‘juice cleanse’ would nudge their toned bodies even closer to radiant perfection. But along the way, more people started drinking it. And for consumers and entrepreneurs, a realization took hold: juice did not have to be part of a challenging, expensive cleanse. It could simply be lunch.”

Yes, the industry is booming. And for every boutique juice shop like ours, there are more and more conveyor-belt chains popping up like dandelions in a fresh bed of wheat-grass. We like dandelions (they’re delicious additions to salads), but we also like our ability to create a variety of juices that are high quality, constantly changing with the seasons, and customizable to what our clients need and want. We also don’t think there’s a mass-produced substitute for our years of expertise in the field of health, nutrition, and making healthy foods taste delicious.

What Sets Our Juices Apart

Our juices don’t just include fruit juice, they’re carefully balanced with natural nutrients like hemp protein, turmeric, or almond milk, to give you the foundation for mind and body balance. There are some things you can’t quite achieve with a conveyer belt.

But we are thrilled that more and more people are finding out about juices. We love them. Come in and try one of our 16oz fresh-made juices for just $12.50. Like the New York Times says, “it could simply be lunch.”

Taste the Rainbow: 5 Ways to Use Juicing Pulp

Juicer pulp rainbow

It pains me to throw away perfectly good food, even if it’s been shredded and largely dehydrated. So for those of you juicing at home, here are a few tips for reducing your waste – while reducing your waist. (If you’re on a cleanse, just freeze the pulp.)

Before you whisk that pulp into your next recipe, know that the moisture content varies depending on which juicer you use. Expect some trial and error as you adjust.

1. Green Juice Crust-less Quiche – You’ve seen those photos on Pinterest of mini breakfast quiches baked in muffin tins, right? Using muffin tins is a great way to plan easy breakfasts for the week. Just whisk together your eggs and greens (and goat cheese or feta if you’re inclined) for a delicious portion-controlled breakfast. Spinach, kale and chard pulp is the perfect healthy addition.
2. Soups & Stews – Saute your carrot, celery and parsley scraps along with chopped onion for a healthy base for broths, soups and stews. Literally, just add water (and vegetable broth or tomato juice if you want to kick it up a notch).
3. Pancakes – Carrot and sweet potato pulp make for bright orange and deliciously sweet pancakes and waffles.
4. Muffins – Use apple, carrot and ginger pulp for carrot-apple tea cakes.
5. Beet Carrot Cucumber Salad, with Goat Cheese and Toasted Walnuts – The name says it all. Combine your beet, carrot and cucumber pulp (removing any large pieces), make a simple vinaigrette (2Tb honey, 1 ½ Tb Dijon, 3 Tb red wine vinegar, 1 ½ Tb minced shallots, salt, pepper, olive oil), and toss with goat cheese and toasted walnuts. Great for picnics and potlucks.

What’s your favorite way to use pulp? Compost? Birdfood? Sweets?

4 Ways to Boost Your Juice

Heal through food

What do the Purifier, Green Protein, The Beet-nick, & Body Beautiful have in common? They are 4 of the over 30 different organic medicinal juices Intelligent Gourmet blends. If you follow me on Facebook, you’ve probably noticed more than a few posts about how we can heal ourselves through our food. I firmly believe that the solution to many of our health problems can be found in what we choose to put in our bodies.

And juicing is a powerful way to concentrate the health benefits of fruits and vegetables. Here are some of my favorite ways to Boost Your Juice.

Turmeric Root – A little goes a long way, but when you pair it with celery, Asian pear, and apple, it becomes an exotic, tasty, and very healthy treat. Turmeric has been used in India for more than 2500 years, not only for its anti-inflammatory properties, but also for its natural antiseptic and antibacterial qualities. It’s also a powerful cancer-fighter, a natural liver detoxifier and may even prevent or slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by removing amyloid plaque buildup in the brain.

Sea Beans – Looking a little like coral, sea beans (aka Salicornia/Glasswort/Pickleweed) are actually a type of succulent that grows in salt marshes and beaches. It has a high salt content, but the flavor is similar to spinach or asparagus. A variety of “sea vegetable” like seaweed, sea beans are rich in vitamin A, C, iron and calcium. I like to put them in our gazpacho juice with tomato, lime, poblano pepper, cilantro and cucumber.

Dandelion Greens & Burdock Root – For a deep detox (and to help get the wine out of my liver) I add these to some of my juices. Both have mild diuretic properties that help flush toxins out of the system.

Hemp Protein Powder – If you’re cleansing for an extended period of time, you’ll need to keep up your protein. Hemp contains all of the essential amino acids, making it one of nature’s best plant-based proteins.

We’re coming out with more and more medicinal juices every day – so let us know what you’d like to see, and we’ll juice it up for you!