The vegetable juices extracted from fresh raw vegetables are highly nutritious as they provide nutritive enzymes and elements to all the cells and tissues of the body. Body can derive these elements from whole vegetables, but the fresh juices can provide them in the manner in which they can be most easily digested and assimilated. A vitamin and mineral deficiency can be recovered quickly by drinking fresh juices than by eating raw vegetables as such.

Practically all vegetables make good juices, but few are bitter. The bitterest one is of bitter gourd, but it is very good for diabetes. However, vegetable juices can be divided into three main types :

i. Juices from vegetable fruits - Tomatoes

Tomatoes and cucumber

ii. Juices from green-leafy vegetables - Cabbage and Spinach

iii. Juices from root vegetables - Carrot and radish

In most cases it is desirable to use juice individually and separately. At any time, more than three juices should never be included in any one mixture.

The broad rules applicable to combination of vegetable juices are-

- Juices from vegetable fruits may be combined with those of the green leafy vegetables but not with juices of root vegetables.

- Juices of green leafy vegetables may be combined with those of the root vegetables.

Vegetable juices soothe jaded nerves and gently carry away toxic matter and accumulated waste products. Many common ailments respond favorably to raw juices.

• They are best taken at least half an hour or more after meals.

• They should not be taken before meals or near the same time as fruit juices.

• Avoid drinking juices kept at room temperature.

• Always drink fresh juices or pasteurized or refrigerated ones.

Doses of vegetable juice differ with age.

An adult may take one full glass of juice.

Children and infants can take half and quarter glass of juice (in divided doses) respectively per day during day time i.e. after breakfast and after lunch (two times).

As far as their effects are concerned, raw juices are found to be very rejuvenating and nutritive and no side effect is noticed during juice therapy which normally goes on up to 15 to 30 days.

In few cases use of these juices varies as per the disease, for example, in jaundice, juices of lemon, radish, pomegranate, bitter gourd are given up to one month or till symptoms disappear and patient recovers a bit.

Just for the sake of good health, vegetable and fruit juices can be taken for a month or more e.g. orange, cabbage, lemon juices. But the juices containing very good amount of beta carotene (e.g. carrot juice ) should not be taken beyond one month, as beta carotene breaks into vitamin A in our stomach. One should know that one unit of beta carotene gives two units of vitamin A which accumulates in our liver and may be toxic if deposited in excess amount.

Any kind of therapy- natural or synthetic juice is not advised on empty stomach barring exception. So, juices could not be taken on an empty stomach. Rather they should be taken just before the meals or half an hour or an hour after meals or breakfast.

It should be noted that while consuming the fruits and vegetables for their therapeutic benefits, you should also make appropriate overall dietary and lifestyle changes in order to get their maximum healing benefits.

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