To say that I love freshly squeezed orange juice would be a severe understatement. It’s probably more accurate to say that if I had the resources to fund a drinking fountain of endless fresh squeezed OJ for my home I’d combust from too much joy (and I’d probably attract a lot of friendly neighbors). Aside from the fact that it tastes so sweet and refreshing, the benefits of fresh orange juice are remarkable. It’s important to first recognize that fresh squeezed juice is much, much different than the array of processed blends that are available on supermarket shelves. Even though they look and smell almost identical, commercial OJ is highly engineered.
From a technical perspective, we know that after the oranges are squeezed, the juice is stored in giant holding tanks and, critically, the oxygen is removed from them. That essentially allows the liquid to keep (for up to a year) without spoiling– but that liquid that we think of as orange juice tastes nothing like the Tropicana OJ that comes out of the carton. To bring the flavor back in after pasteurization, the company adds artificial flavorings and additional nutrients. Unlike fresh, the processed juice lacks the the bioflavonoids and vitamin C that provide most of the health benefits. Thus, fresh-squeezed orange juice consumed within a few hours of preparing it is likely to have the most nutrients and in ratios that occur in nature.
- Bioflavonoids: Helps prevent oxidation damage from free radicals, combat degenerative diseases and tissue aging, support cell growth and cardiovascular health and display some anti-cancer properties. They also exhibit anti-allergy, anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties.
- Vitamin C: Needed for collagen growth and repair, which affects the health and appearance of your skin, joints and entire cardiovascular system. It is a powerful antioxidant and decent antimicrobial and also stimulates your immune response and enhances the absorption of dietary iron.
To celebrate these rawesome benefits and my unwavering obsession with freshly squeezed orange juice, I whipped up this delicious juice blend that is sure to make you shine like the sun.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Servings: One smoothie (Approximately 3.5 cups)
- 2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice (about 4-6 oranges, depending on the size)
- 1 TBSP fresh lemon juice (about 1/4-1/2 of a lemon)
- 2 cups frozen pineapple
- 1 peeled and cut mango
1. To make the juice, peel and send the oranges and lemon wedge through the juicer. I personally use a Hurom HU-100 Slow Juicer, but any juicer will do.
2. Pour the juice into a blender and add the pineapple and mango. Blend the mixture until completely smooth.