Interview with Dr. Angelina Riopel, ND

If you have been thinking about healthy eating choices than you probably have considered introducing a juice or smoothie to your daily routine. Not so hard these days with all the fresh juice and smoothie shops around. But is one better than the other? We asked Innate Wellness Naturopath, Dr. Angelina, to tell us a little more about the ‘how-to’ of juices vs. smoothies.

What is the difference between fresh juice and a smoothie?

A smoothie is a drink that is blended and typically contains a combination of fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds and protein and can generally be considered as a meal replacement.

Juicing is a process that extracts the only the juice from the fruit or vegetable, leaving the fibre behind. This is considered to be more of a nutrient boost as opposed to a meal.

I have heard I shouldn’t drink fresh pressed juice because there isn’t any fibre. Is this true?

Fibre is certainly healthy and we should have plenty in our diet. It helps to keep blood sugar levels balanced, keeps us feeling full longer by slowing gastric emptying, and is essential to a healthy gut and bowel movements.   On the hand, by removing the fibre in fresh juice, the nutrients and enzymes become immediately accessible to the body.

What are the benefits of juicing?

The process of juicing helps to “pre-digest” the nutrients making the vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and enzymes immediately accessible to the body. This is important as many people have impaired digestive systems, which limits the amount of nutrients you can absorb.

Should I drink both juice and smoothies?

Yes absolutely!

Smoothies are like a meal if they contain protein and are great as a breakfast option.

Think of fresh vegetable juice as a super nutrient boost, NOT a meal.

What types of fruit and vegetables should I put into my juice or smoothie?

The issue here is the glycemic index of the fruit and vegetables that we use. Glycemic index refers to how fast the sugar from the food goes into the blood stream – we want that to happen slowly!

Smoothies should contain only low glycemic vegetables and fruit. Avoid sweet tropical fruit like mango’s and banana’s and stick to berries.

  • DO spinach, kale, berries, avocado
  • DON’T banana, mango, pineapple

Juices should only contain vegetables, NOT fruit. The ratio of green and fibrous vegetables to root vegetables like beets and carrots (contain sugar) is very important. No more than ¼ root vegetables. If you have unstable blood sugar avoid root vegetables in your juice.