Green juice is definitely having a moment.
It does amazing things for your energy levels and overall health, which is what a lot of us are looking for from our juicing adventures.
So once you’ve gone to the effort of making your favorite green juice, when is the best time to have it? Is it really necessary to drag yourself out of bed at the crack of dawn to get the most out of your green juice, or will it work just as well when you get home from work at night?
The best time to drink juice is in the morning because it’s full of complex carbohydrates packed with nutrients that absorb better in the morning than at night. If you drink on an empty stomach they reach even further into your stomach and you’ll get more nutrients and feel fuller.
So yes, the effort and commitment you put into getting up early to have your morning detox is actually worth it!
Complex carbohydrates are calories that are packed with nutrition – rather than the empty calories you find in junk food – and can aid weight loss, since you don’t have to eat as much every day to get the nutrition you need. If you drink fresh juice on an empty stomach, the complex carbohydrates reach even further down into your stomach! You’ll get all the goodness and you’ll stay fuller for longer.
With that being said, drinking juice at night isn’t a bad thing. If your only option is getting your juicer out after a long day at work and enjoying your favorite fruits and veggies then instead of when you wake up, then go for it! Having a healthy juice at night is better than not having one at all.
Just bear in mind moving forward that if you’re able to alter your morning routine so you have a little more time, then have your juice recipes in the morning. You’ll enjoy more of the health benefits that your juices provide you with and it’ll fuel your day more efficiently.
Why Should You Drink Juice On An Empty Stomach?
We’ve all been there. You wake up in the morning, start thinking about the day ahead and your stomach lets out a big rumble. That’s when you realize you’re ravenous!
This happens because usually, when you wake up, your body has gone around eight hours without any food. A lot of people don’t feel like eating when they get up but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t eat – if you feel this way your body needs fuel! Sometimes your digestive system just needs a little nudge to get working in the morning, much like some of us need to get out of bed at all…
Your body is in the ideal state for absorbing nutrition and goodness first thing in the morning. So you have a couple of options when it comes to breakfast. You could enjoy a tasty pastry and a sugary coffee, which would taste amazing but mean you’ll be hungry soon after (once the sugar rush ends).
Alternatively, you could have a delicious fresh juice, packed with fruits and veggies. You’ll absorb all of the vitamins and minerals you could want, which will leave you feeling full and satisfied, as well as enjoying something that tastes great. On top of that, getting into the routine of having a fresh juice for or with your breakfast will mean you’ll reap the health benefits and positive changes to your body over time.
If you drink fruit juice or vegetable juice along with a large, heavy meal, I’d recommend changing your routine a bit. If you’re having fresh juice in this way, your body has to work a lot harder to absorb the goodness from it and your body is much more likely to turn it into waste. This is the last thing you want if you’re going to all the effort of juicing every day! If you’re making fresh juice, you want to get the benefit of all the nutrition that’s in there. This is one of the reasons that enjoying your juice in the morning is the healthiest way to go.
An easy way to incorporate a fresh juice into your daily life is by replacing your first coffee of the day with your favorite juice. This way you aren’t having to change too much and you know you have the time set aside already to enjoy your juice. If, like me, the thought of missing out on your morning coffee completely makes you shudder, don’t worry! You can still have a coffee, I’d just recommend waiting at least 20 minutes after you’ve finished your juice. This way you’ll avoid indigestion!
Why I Prefer Fresh Juice In The Morning
This is just my personal opinion, but I find I feel better throughout my day if I start it with a fresh juice.
I used to opt for either toast or a bowl of cereal with some milk for my breakfast and it would usually leave me feeling bloated and uncomfortable. I’ve found that fresh juice gives me the boost I need in the morning but it doesn’t weigh me down in the same way.
I’ve even found that a fresh juice wakes me up better and keeps me awake for longer than a coffee does, which surprised me. Coffee will give me a big initial boost, which feels good, but it wears off before too long. Then I feel lethargic and tired all over again! The boost I get from a juice lasts longer.
Aside from the physical difference I feel, I feel better about myself generally when I have a fresh juice for breakfast. I know that I’ve done right by my body and feel really positive. So I can testify that you set yourself up to have a good day when you start it with your favorite juice!
Drinking Juice At Night
Like I said, you shouldn’t worry if you can only have your juices at night – having juice at night is better than having none, since they’re so good for you.
However, one of the downsides of having fresh juice before bed is the energy boost that it’ll provide you. When you’re trying to wind down and relax, the last thing you want is a big injection of energy! So if you already have problems nodding off at night, a fresh juice isn’t going to help.
Some studies have shown that having tart cherry juice can actually help you get to sleep, as it aids your body’s production of melatonin – the hormone that helps you fall asleep. However, I appreciate that tart cherry juice isn’t something you are always going to have at home, since it’s a little more obscure!
If fresh juice at night is your only option, then I’d try to avoid fresh fruits if possible, since it contains lots of fructose – a natural sugar. Try to stick to vegetable juice-based recipes, since they’re lower in sugar and very healthy! Green vegetables, like kale, can be a good choice since they’re so nutritious – a little superfood concoction before bed could be just the ticket.
Having fruit juice during the day isn’t a problem, since usually you burn off the natural sugars in it so it won’t affect your blood sugar levels. However, having it at night can cause a huge spike and then a consequent crash in your blood sugar, which can have a big impact on your sleep patterns.
I’d also recommend avoiding citrus fruits in your juices if you’re having them at night. These fruit juices are quite acidic and can cause problems like acid reflux, or heartburn – especially if you’re lying down!
How Much Juice Should You Have At Once?
Now that you know when to have your juice, you need to know how much to have!
Celery juice lovers swear by a single 16-ounce serving of juice a day. If I’m having a juice made of mostly veggies, then I do the same. However, I generally use milliliters, so 400-500ml as a serving of juice.
However, if you find that’s too much or you’re using mostly fresh fruit, then opt for a small 8 oz glass (250 ml), or even smaller depending on what works for you!
One of the great things, and one of the things that I love about juicing at home, is that you’re able to tailor it to your specific needs. You can fit juicing around your schedule and your preferences, so take some time to work out what you like best.
Best time to drink juice for weight gain?
Juicing isn’t usually what you think of when you’re trying to gain weight, since having fresh juices is good for detoxing. However, some fruit juices are high in natural sugars, like orange juice, and can sometimes lead to weight gain when people don’t expect it.
From what I can find, there’s no best time for drinking juice that will help you gain weight. I would still recommend having it first thing in the morning and then perhaps following it up with a high-protein, nutritious breakfast. That way you’re maximizing the goodness you get from your juice, but you aren’t replacing a meal.
You could even opt for a smoothie rather than a juice and include ingredients like peanut butter or banana – these are higher calorie ingredients that could help with weight gain.
Obviously, I’ll say here that before changing your diet you should speak to your doctor about any worries you have. They’ll know what to recommend and be able to help you out.
Best time to drink juice for glowing skin?
Again, it’s unclear when is the best time to drink juice to clear up your skin.
However, the links between having fresh juices and having gorgeous skin are clear! The goodness that you get from fresh fruit and veggies is great for maintaining healthy skin. Vitamin C is just one nutrient that helps maintain the layers that make up your skin and prevent the damage that is caused to your skin by UV rays. Using ingredients like cucumber or watermelon is also good for your skin, since they will help keep you hydrated. Having enough water every day to hydrate your skin will keep it healthy and glowing!
Once again, I’d recommend having your fresh juice in the morning to get the most goodness out of it, which will benefit your skin.
What is the best juice to drink in the morning?
The answer to this depends on what you’re hoping to get from your juices. All juices that use fresh fruits and veggies are going to be good for you and give you the boost you need to get on with your day. Different ingredients have different benefits, so take some time to try different recipes and find the ones you like.
Green juices that contain ingredients like kale, spinach and celery are packed full of goodness and are a good option if you want to avoid sugar, even natural sugars.
However, using ingredients like ginger, lemon or citrus fruits create a completely different flavor and have their own plus points – anti-inflammatory properties, immune-boosting vitamin C and ‘superfood’ antioxidants to name a few.
So think about what you like to eat and drink. Then go from there!
Can you drink juice after lunch?
I mentioned earlier that it’s better to avoid drinking your fresh juice alongside a meal, since you don’t get the benefit of the nutritional value – a lot of it just gets turned into waste because you’ve already eaten a big meal!
However, there’s no reason not to have a fresh juice after a meal. I’d just recommend waiting a little while, 20 minutes or so, to allow your food to be digested so you don’t give yourself indigestion.
I still maintain though, that first thing in the morning is the best time to have your juice!
If you’re able to, drink your fresh juice on an empty stomach after you wake up in the morning. It’s the best time to absorb all that goodness and you’ll feel the difference throughout the day.
With that being said, listen to what your body tells you. You know it better than anyone! If having juice first thing doesn’t agree with you, then stop. Experiment with different times throughout the day to find what works for you. Your body, your rules!
If I missed anything, let me know in the comments below. I try and keep these articles up-to-date, so if you do want me to talk about anything else, just let me know.