When I juice veggies how long will the juice hold its nutritional value? I heard every 24 hours it loses 1/2 of its value. Is this true? Can I juice the night before and consume it in the morning without losing nutritional value?
Great question and kudos for making fresh juice! Drinking your homemade juice the next day can be just as nutritious as the night before if you store it properly.
Juicing itself will cause the loss of fiber, which you lose when you take out the pulp. In rare instances when juicing large batches, the machine can get hotter, and the high temperature might damage some heat-sensitive vitamins, such as thiamin, vitamin B-6, folate and vitamin C. In addition, you are right that juice loses its nutritional value over time.
Due to light and oxygen exposure, the nutrient content of fresh juice diminishes over time. Some sensitive nutrients begin to oxidize or degrade, especially if you pour the juice into a glass without a lid. Vitamins A, Riboflavin, B-6, E and K are more easily damaged whereas phytochemicals such as phenols are quite stable. Oxidation destroys beta-carotene and vitamin C, whereas vitamin E and flavonoids are also quite stable.
The nutrient loss is even more substantial over longer periods of time. Prepared and bottled juices for commercial sale are more prone to nutrient loss because of their extended processing, shipping and shelf time. For example, vitamin C potency can decrease by as much as 50 percent over 12 weeks, even in properly stored orange juice. Even intact vegetables lose a significant amount of nutrients within days after being picked!
TIP: Store freshly made juice properly by pouring it into an opaque container with little to no air space when full and with a tight seal. Refrigerate the juice and consume it within 48 hours.
TIP: Begin with the freshest ingredients available to obtain the maximum nutritional value. Use a high power blender to retain more fiber and phytochemicals.
– Debbie J., MS, RD
Debbie James is a registered dietitian. Any views or opinions presented in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions or recommendations of Fitness International, LLC.
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