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A useful inclusion in a healthy diet plan is making fruit juices and smoothies. These are very nutritious, thirst quenching, hunger satisfying alternatives to the ubiquitous carbonated and excessively sweetened beverages.

It takes a little planning, but we should take the time and make the effort to plan such an important part of our life as our health and longevity.

There are many delicious combinations of fruits. The very juicy fruits such as pears and grapes may be combined with a host of different berries, such as strawberries, blueberries to make ‘to die for’ flavors. Apples are a standard staple for juicing. Peaches, and cherries in season are excellent.

You might experiment by juicing a variety of fruits separately and blend combination in a small container to determine what you like the best. As the seasons progress and we go from strawberries to blackberries, and peaches to apples, we have an extensive palate of flavors to blend into a cornucopia of delicious variations.

Of course, you will want to use fruits at their juicy best. I see people eating hard pears, peaches and plums. They may look pretty but they lack the flavor and nutrition, the ‘deliciousness’ of the fully ripened fruit. Most commercially grown fruits are picked and shipped green and are intended to be ripened at the point of delivery. Plums are a good example of this practice. They are full formed but not fully ripe when you bring them home. (Ideally, you would buy tree ripened fruit ready to eat, but this is not how commercially grown fruit is handled. A trip to a farmer’s market is a treat when you find fully ripe and ready to eat fruit in all its glory.) The fruit should be kept in a warm place and covered with a paper bag to hold in the ripening gas (ethylene) that is emitted by the green fruit. The warmer the fruit and the more gas is retained, the faster the fruit ripens.

This offers the opportunity to control the ripening speed so a relatively large supply of fruit will not ripen all at once, the fruit that is kept cool and ventilated will not ripen at the rate that warm and enclosed fruit will ripen. The ripening process converts starch to sugar, the texture becomes soft and juicy, and the acid nature of the green fruit becomes neutral. The fruit becomes aromatic and smells’ ripe‘. Then it is at its most nutritious and delicious best.

On the other hand, strawberries are not ripened by ethylene but by genes. As the berry ages, more ripening genes are developed to accelerate the ripening process.  

FRUIT JUICE RECIPES

Lemon~Lime Ginger Ale
(Serves 1)

1 apple, cored and sliced
1/4 lemon
1/2 inch fresh ginger (less if you find the taste too strong)
1/2 lime
handful of grapes
sparkling mineral water
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Remove the grapes from the stem. Juice the apple and ginger together, then juice the rest of the fruit. Pour the juice in a large glass and fill to the top with sparkling water and serve with ice.

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Gingered Apple Cider
(Serves 1)

1 inch piece ginger
3 apples or 1 cup apple cidar

Process through a juicer and serve.

~

PeachPearApple Juice
(Serves 1)

2 peaches, remove seed
1 apple, cored and sliced
1 pear, sliced

Process through a juicer and serve.

    

~

Fruit Punch
(Serves 1)

6 strawberries, fresh or thawed from frozen
1 apple, cored and sliced
1/2 orange, peeled and sectioned

Process the fruit in a juicer and serve.

~

Fruit Nectar
1 orange, peeled and sectioned
1/2 cup raspberries, fresh or thawed from frozen
1 nectarine, pitted and sliced

Process the fruit in a juicer and serve.

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Sparkling Tropical Fruit
(Serves 1)

1 kiwi, peeled
1/2 mango, peeled and sliced
1 orange, peeled and sectioned
sparkling mineral water

Process the fruit in a juicer.
Pour the juice in a large glass and fill to the
top with sparkling water and serve.

~

Blueberry~Cherry Juice
(Serves 1)

handful of cherries, pitted
3/4 cup blueberries
1 apple, cored and sliced

Process the fruit in a juicer and serve.

~

More Fruit Juice Recipe Ideas ...

1 cup strawberries
2 med. apples
1 tsp. lemon juice

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1/2 red grapefruit
1 med. orange
2 handfuls cranberries

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1 pear
1 peach
1 apple

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1 orange
1 mango
1 apple

VEGETABLE JUICE RECIPES

Cucumber~Celery Cooler

1 apple, sliced
4 medium carrots, greens removed
1 stalk celery
1/2 lemon, peeled (optional)
1/4 medium cucumber, peeled

Process the ingredients in a juicer and serve.

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Garden Salad
1 apple
3 medium carrots, greens removed
1/2 green pepper, sweet
4 leaves romaine lettuce
1/2 lemon, peeled (optional)
1 tomato

Process the ingredients in a juicer and serve.

~

Calcium Drink
1/2 cup fresh broccoli pieces
1 apple
3 medium carrots, greens removed
small handful fresh parsley
1/2 lemon, peeled (optional)

Process the ingredients in a juicer and serve.

~

Sweet Potato Carrot Juice
2 medium carrots, greens removed
1 celery stalk
1 small sweet potato
1 apple
1/2 lemon, peeled (optional)

Process the ingredients in a juicer and serve.

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