The Problem with Juicing + The Importance of Symbiosis

by Naima @ Ritual+Vibe
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The Problem with Juicing + The Importance of Symbiosis

Green juice is one health food trend where people swear they are being healthy, and may be actually messing up their system.

Most juicers completely remove the fibers from the fruits and vegetables. These fibers, however, are critical for our gut health! 


 

Have you ever gotten a really bad stomach pain after drinking a green juice?

You’re not alone.

I know some associate juicing & raw veganism as the apex of health. I, too, love the occasional raw situation - like a bomb salad; topped with fruit, nuts, shrooms, spices, and a homemade dressing? Mmm... Maybe add some grilled zuchinni or roasted tomato for depth and a slice of sourdough for crunch... wait, hold up.... my bad, my bad. I’m getting side tracked...

My point is enjoy eating raw ingredients and foods, but I could NEVER eat a 100% raw diet and will never recommend it as a permenant lifestyle change. Even when I’ve tried raw cleanses & juice fasts for an extended time, I noticed I hated it after a few days. I immediately incorporated more grounding and spicy foods instinctually.

Now, I have a more conscious understanding why. Because you’re not feeding just yourself. You’re eating for two 🤰🏾.... trillion.

Your microbiome. 

 

Juicing & The Microbiota Community 

The microbiome of bacteria in your gut is one of “the most densely populated microbial communities” on the planet. Not only do they play a very huge part in regulating your wellbeing, the bacteria in our body actually outnumbers our actual cells. 

This microbiome helps to digest our food, absorb nutrients, and keeps our body in balance. In exchange, the microbiome eats the fiber & starches found in many of the foods we eat. This is called a symbiotic relationship.

Low fiber diets like long term juicing & juice fasts & the Standard American Diet can deplete beneficial bacteria in our bodies.

This depletion of bacteria, called dysbiosis, can lead to health imbalances. 

 

 

The Importance Of Symbiosis & Uniqueness 

The cooperation of symbiotic relationships is essential to a fruitful life, but being disrespectful to this symbiotic relationship can lead to emotional, mental, and physical imbalance.

The gut biome is essential to our immunity, important to our nervous system, and of course, a KEY part of healthy digestion. Fiber-rich foods serve as a prebiotic that feeds the biome. If they are not being fed their beloved dinner of prebiotic, fiber-rich, carbohydrates, they might start to eat at the intestines and colon, leading to what some call “leaky gut.” 

Complex carbohydrates like fibers and starches are obviously a part of our diets for a reason, and the different symbionts or symbiotic bacteria in our gut prefer different nutrients from a variety of foods.

So which would you rather? Dysbiosis or symbiosis?

On top of that, each of our microbiomes are all completely unique! This is very important for you to remember if you prescribe to any dogma, cult, or religious beliefs about food like raw veganism or the African Biomineral Lifestyle! The community of bacteria that governs your body is completely individualized for YOU, and modulates based on our sex, age, genetics, natural immunity given by the mother, diet, weight. (SOURCE: https://www.pnas.org/content/105/6/2117) / (SOURCE: https://theweek.com/articles-amp/930545/precision-nutrition-are-hyperindividualized-diets-future-eating?__twitter_impression=true)

So what does that mean for women following health advice from a man? What about listening to someone who is not in your immediate family or those with a very different genetic makeup as you? What does that mean when you trust someone else’s authority over you? What are you saying about yourself when you do that?

Trust YOUR gut.

“We are all complete unique individuals” seems both cliche, yet easily forgotten. Especially in the times where so many people depend on idol representation to represent them. So many lack individuality, and they instead rely on strict dogma to provide them with a pre-determined path in life.

What honestly is the point of your life if you must live it under to someone else’s direction and dominion?

Disrespecting your uniqueness, similar to disrespecting symbiosis, causes imbalances in your body.

The bacteria in our body, for the most part, are completely neutral. They are not bad pathogens or germs that cause random disease just because. They are neutral. But if you turn on them, by disregarding their unique needs, they can literally starve you and cause chronic disease aka disharmony.

Trusting your gut can lead to a healthy mind body and spirit, so pay attention to stomach aches after smoothies, juices, and raw vegan foods. Eating with an ego can cause you to ignore your gut. Always listen. 

 

Smoothies & Raw Food Diet Could Cause Energetic Imbalances 

Not only could a primary juice based diet for an extended amount of time lead to nutritional deficiencies, cold foods in general can slow down certain digestive systems. Cold and raw foods can actually worsen an energetic imbalance in the body.

Eating cold foods could also slow down circulation into the body, and can cause all of your organs to work harder - leading to fatigue & a slower machine/system in the body.

In TCM, if you are Qi Deficient - you should completely avoid long term raw food diets, a lot of smoothies, etc. If your body is more yin than yang, you should also avoid a lot of juices and cold foods. If you are more warm-natured, you can get away with more cold foods, but in general, they believe we should keep the stomach warm for optimal digestion.

I noticed that, during my last raw food fast, after the original boost of energy I had after the first few days, my energy was veryyyyy low for the following week. It took me a while to reset and feel like myself again.

 

Rebalancing The Body:

These are symptoms you may want to look for:

  • Bloating/fluid retention
  • Stomach pains after drinking smoothies, juices, or cold things
  • Abdominal cramping in general 
  • Other digestive issues 
  • Cold body, feet, hands
  • Lack of energy
  • Sore joints 

If you have any of those symptoms, you can...

Be sure to eat cooked foods. Lightly sautéed or grilled veggies can still support healthy weight loss if that is why you are eating raw. Delicious broths & teas are extremely healing, and can be very beneficial in if you are doing a detox / cleanse.

Must drink a cold ass fresh juice after reading this entire article? Use a mascicating juicer like this Omega Juicer. Also, add ginger!!! And drink a warm glass of water with it.

Instead of putting seamoss in your smoothies, put it in your tea! You can make a delicious chai latte with seamoss gel, hemp milk, spices, and a bit of sweetener or you can just add it straight to hot water with lemon and/or smother teabag.

Incorporate more warming spices & foods. Warming foods include pickled or fresh ginger, fennel, cinnamon, clove, ginseng, onion, leeks, mustard / turnip greens, root vegetables, hot spices, most nuts & seeds

The bottom line is we have been healthy and well long before juicing everyday replaced full meals, and these “cheats” to health have the potential to set you back, & causing issues in the future. Don’t get caught up in following trends.

Cooking allows for better nutrient absorption, and it’s not bad for you - despite what raw food cults may say. And because of the better nutrient absorption, our minds & bodies have been able to develop faster. Instead of standing and chewing all day like a cow, we can spend time doing something else - like making art for example.

Respecting both your uniqueness and the symbiotic relationships you’re hosting will keep you healthier faster than a green juice.

 

 

by Naima @ Ritual+Vibe

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