Expert Juicing and Smoothie-Making Tips from Malamiah Juice Bar

How many fruits and vegetables do you eat in a day?

If you’re like many Americans, the number is dismal. Michiganders report that they consume about one serving of fruit and one and a half servings of vegetables on average per day. Depending on your age and lifestyle, five to nine servings or more is recommended.

For Anissa and Jermale Eddie, helping people get more antioxidant-rich produce into their diets is their job and passion. Owners of Malamiah Juice Bar at the Downtown Market in Grand Rapids, the couple started juicing themselves after watching the documentary “Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead.”

Inspired by the documentary star’s lifestyle change after following a juice fast, the Eddie family bought a juicer and one year later, opened their shop in September 2013. Their bustling business pours up smoothies and juices for customers at the market. They’ve done so well that they’re looking to open a second location by the end of this year.

Anissa Eddie said both smoothies and juices are great ways to get fast, healthy nutrition, but she said they can serve very different functions. Smoothies can substitute for a meal if you’re on the run, providing enough calories and protein to fill you up. Juice, on the other hand, should be used as more of a dietary supplement – providing super-concentrated doses of a wide variety of fruits and vegetables all in one shot.

One serving of juice might be loaded with full servings of many different types of veggies and fruits, something most people won’t consume in a day.

“With juice, you get a ton of benefit without having to eat so much,” she explained.

For people who consider French fries a vegetable and like their salads doused in ranch dressing, juicing might be something to consider. Anissa Eddie explained that her boys, Malachi and Nehemiah, have actually grown a more sophisticated palate since the family starting juicing, even gulping down some of the more savory offerings with beets and kale. The green color doesn’t even phase them, and they’ll often ask for their “Hulk” juice.

“It’s just a great boost to get those things you need in your system,” she said.

Here are her tips for beginners looking to incorporate the nutrition of smoothies and juices into their daily routine.

For smoothies:

  • Bananas make an excellent base ingredient, lending natural sweetness and a filling, creamy texture, not to mention potassium.
  • Spinach is a mild way to sneak greens into a smoothie for kids or adults who don’t love vegetables.
  • Add flaxseed, chia seeds, or a plant-based protein powder to smoothies to give them more staying power as an on-the-go breakfast or meal replacement option.

For juices:

  • Buy a high-quality juicer if you’re really serious about juicing.
  • Drink the juice you make right away to get the full health benefits. Anissa Eddie compares what happens to older juice as similar to the way an apple turns brown. If you make too much, store it in an air-tight container, such as a mason jar, but try to consume it soon after you make it.
  • Don’t just gulp your juice down. Swish it in your mouth and then swallow it. The enzymes in your saliva help activate nutritional benefits.
  • Aim for an 80/20 ratio of vegetables to fruits in your concoction. While fruits contain natural sugar, it’s still important that you not get too much, even from your own homemade juice.

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Photo credit: bertholf


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Read 5 Comments

  1. I was absolutely one of those that didn’t get enough fruits and especially veggies on a daily basis.

    Once I found how much I enjoyed juicing I was able to solve that problem pretty quickly. One thing I would recommend to your readers is to consider getting a masticating juicer. They are more expensive than the more popular centrifugal units but they are well worth the investment if you’ll be committing yourself to this.

    They squeeze more of the fluids, vitamins, and minerals out to get you the most nutrition. You’ll also end up using less produce and that’s important especially if your using the more expensive organic ones.

  2. Great article on the benefits of juicing! Also gave me some really good tips that I will use immediate. I started juicing when I was recovering from my surgery. I did my surgery at Pearl Recovery Center in Beverly Hills. They introduced me to the benefits of juicing at Pearl. Juicing gave my body the nutrients needs to recover after surgery and helped get me back to my normal life. Definitely try juicing if you are unsure of doing it!

  3. This is a very robust guide, I have faced similar challenge in the past. I obviously didn’t like the taste of what the conventional centrifugal juicers offered.

    I tried the masticating juicer for my veggie and I was not wrong about. I recommend the masticating juicer or passionate juicers, its a bit slower and more expensive but it worth the wait and has value for money.

  4. I feel juicing is the best way to consume fruits and vegetables easily. Thanks for sharing the recipes. Both the smoothie and juicing seems highly nutrient for better skin and healthy food habit. Kids should be also encouraged from a very early age to develop regular fresh juice consumption.

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