Juicing with Danger

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Well, I finished the Fit Juice Trilogy, and I’m determined to juice as many days a week as possible. This is juice as in vegetables, not juice as in steroids, for those of you late to the party. I recommend the books to anyone who is looking for a good primer and a collection of recipes.

I’ll break the review into three parts: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.

The Good

First and foremost, there are enough recipes here to keep a person from tiring of a specific juice. While this information or variations might be available in pieces elsewhere it is really great having it in a pdf that I can reference from my phone while standing next to the juicer. Also, the recipes are neatly divided out by type — with a pair of the ebooks being specifically for athletes and men, though honestly the health benefits seem universal.

Juicing Power is the main book in the offering and is a compilation of a lot of advice Mike has given in the past (his page, Fit Juice, is how I originally learned of the benefits of juicing and chose a juicer), and I believe a fair amount of original content (or I need to pay more attention to Fit Juice). It starts out with a list of reasons to juice.

The first section covers tips for the beginner: How to juice, the caloric content of some juices, servings of fruit and vegetables in juice, diet while juicing, and even a comparison of various juicers. This is what makes this a great resource for someone who wants to make the changes of juicing, but is facing an internet full of opinions and half-formed websites. Mike distills a whole lot of information into an easily readable product, and lays it out in order. He doesn’t waste any time or page space with unnecessary bloat (yet the books are over two hundred pages of information!), and he doesn’t give you any weird hippie justification for juicing.

Rather, he explains what the benefits are from actual observation and cites studies where they are available.

In the second major section he covers the benefits of juicers versus those of blenders. This is pretty key because they will produce vastly different results. Myself, I wasn’t sure how much to commit to juicing so I started with the Big Mouth Juicer, and we have a pretty cool blender, so I can pick and choose. If I’m going to be using a lot of greens I use the blender, mix in some almond milk, protein powder, and make a shake out of it. Same for berries. But the BMJ handles beets, lemons (peeled), and tomatoes fairly well.

After laying out everything you ever wanted to know about juicers and blenders he moved into more detailed discussions of the benefits of juicing, including specific fruits and vegetables that have various health benefits: kale is a big one. Again, there is no magic here — this is all based on the nutritional value of the juice that comes from the plants.

Juice is really good for losing weight; when I was making my variation of the Real V8 juice and drinking it every morning I ate less for lunch (because my body didn’t crave as much) and lost a fair amount of weight. This is the track I’m trying to get back on, and is one of the reasons I bought the book: Now I’m invested even more, and I’m making my progress public because shame is a powerful motivator.

After the benefits, Mike goes into recipes. Oh, the recipes. I’ve only tried a few of them — and there is a big list I want to try. There’s got to be a recipe in here for everyone. I clearly prefer to play with the Real V8 one, because I keep mentioning it. One of the reasons is that I drank a lot of V8 for a while and noticed that I felt like total shit after drinking too much in one day. The reason? I flipped the sucker around and about dropped it when I saw the sodium in it. I like V8, but that is… ridiculous.

Before the conclusion, Mike gives a list of juicing tips. My favorite involves lemons (I love lemons), but also the bit about vegetable/fruit colors.

Juicing for Athletes is a detailed break down of juices for working out and recovery. I’m not quite to that point, so I can’t comment on this in detail, but I did read the entire thing and found some of the benefits of juice for athletes fascinating. It is basically like supercharging your body with a mainline of nutrition. (That should be on a t-shirt.)

Juicing for Men is an information overload on how to use the juices of various vegetables and fruits to help you out in quite a few departments. Like the Athletes ebook, this one breaks down in detail many recipes and the effects of various healthy juices on your body, with a focus on things like male libido and erection strength. Yeah, some of this is pretty personal type stuff. For the comfort of my readers I’m going to leave off any of my own experience here other than to say that veggies that impact blood flow do have a certain aftereffect.

And watch out with the greens, boys, unless you buy her a snorkel mask first.

Overall, there is a lot of information here and a lot to like. There is a great starting point for anyone interested and more in depth knowledge for a person willing to take a deeper plunge. I’m glad I shelled out for the book, and I’m glad JuiceBro is out there making this information available.

The Bad

Most of these aren’t really problems with the books, but they are important enough to list under this heading to get people’s attention:

This is also the kind of thing it would be nice to have in a glossy print out like a cook book for the aforementioned referencing.

If you are sensitive to beets and dive into this head first you will find yourself in an uncomfortable situation: I way overdid the Real V8 recipe well before the ebooks were available. The book warns about this — tread carefully.

Also, if you are going to be juicing a lot be prepared to wash a lot of vegetables. Curly kale is a real pain to wash. Always make sure your veggies are washed — take a gander at the bottom of a celery stalk fresh from the store if you want to know why.

The Ugly

Each of the three books starts with a lengthy legal disclaimer, which makes me sad for us as a nation. How can you hurt yourself with too much vegetable juice?? The books never claim to cure ills or make any outlandish, snake-oil-salesman claims. But because we are over litigious, Mike has to cover himself with this shield. He’s giving out advice based on his and others’ experience, not pretending to be a doctor. The ugly isn’t the ebooks: It’s the way we treat offering advice, be it legal or medical. Yes, this is a product being sold, but… everyone who gets their nipples in a twist over someone spreading juice tips needs to make the calming smoothies a part of their daily diet and have a nice glass of shut up juice while they’re at it.

There is a yo momma joke in it, though: “I am not a doctor and this is not medical advice, but yo momma needs to lose some weight.”

  • Danger & Play Blog

    Thanks for the review. It was helpful and provided some valuable feedback I’ll be able to use on the next set of books. Thanks again!

  • I tried to drink beet juice straight up and threw-up in my car, on my way to work, It was ugly! My stomach has a hard time dealing with certain vegetables for some reason, so I have to mix the veggies with fruit or no dice.

    • I’m not sure I could drink straight beet juice even now, any more than I could eat straight beets. Beets can also cause severe diarrhea in some so I am not surprised it can also cause someone to vomit — both responses are the body trying to get something the hell out!

      Despite the deep beet color of my juices they’re probably mostly tomato or celery by volume just due to the differing amount of water in each.