Juicing in Thailand

Juicing in Thailand

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Every year I come up with new ideas for New Year’s Resolutions, and like most other people, I never stick to them. But, this year has been different. At least for the last two months. Buying my bicycle nearly two years ago was a life changer for me. Particularly last year as I was using it a lot more to get around, run errands and also for exploring. As you know I love street food and cycling enabled me to go off and find new food vendors. I also love cooking, but I found myself going out to eat more and more. It got to the extent that I stopped going to the supermarket each week to buy groceries and was eating almost entirely on the street. In Thailand, going out to eat is a lot cheaper than cooking for yourself and so in the process I was saving a lot of money. But, that came at a cost. I didn’t realize what was going on at the time, but last year I was ill with the flu quite a few times as well as having various aches and pains. It wasn’t until the end of the year that I started putting two and two together.

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Eating Thai food is generally very healthy. But, you have to be careful if your only source of nutrients are coming from these road side vendors. When people started posting graphics on Facebook showing daily recommended allowances of fruit and vegetables it started to dawn on me that for the past year I had eaten very little in the way of fruit and vegetables. Doing a bit more research I soon realized that this was probably why I had been ill so often last year. Very few street food dishes have vegetables, and when they do, you are not getting that much. Around the same time, I also started seeing people on Facebook talking about juicing as a good way to get all the vitamins and minerals that you need each day. But, the thing that really got me to sit up and notice was the documentary “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead”. It is about an overweight Australian who takes a challenge to only drink fruit and vegetable juice for 60 days. For me, that movie was an inspiration and I decided straight away that my New Year’s Resolution should be to juice at least once a day.

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The next step was to buy a juicer. Which I must admit gave me a headache for a while as there are not only different kinds of juicers, like masticating juicers and centrifugal juicers, but each one has many different brands to choose from. Roadside juice bars in Thailand use the much cheaper blender which you can get for around 1,000 Baht. The next one up are the centrifugal juicers. These ones separate the pulp from the juice. Prices start from about 4,000 Baht. The final ones are masticating juicers which “chews” the fruit at a slower speed making sure that you get every drop of juice. With the centrifugal juicer you need to drink the juice straight away but the juice from the masticating juicer you can store for longer. Unfortunately you are not going to be able to pick up one of these for less than 12,000 Baht. Over the new year holiday, I visited Central department store where they had a selection of centrifugal juicers. In the end I went for the Philips Juicer that had been reduced from 7,000 Baht down to 3,999 Baht. A quick search on Amazon showed that quite a few people were happy with this model. One tip when buying a juicer, you need to get one that is easy to clean. If its too much of a pain then you will probably use it less than less. Mine is easy. I can juice and do a clean-up within ten minutes.

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So, I started juicing at the start of the new year. My plan was to do a 7-10 day juice detox, but first I wanted to prepare myself. I had read accounts of people going through severe withdrawal symptoms on the first few days which caused them to quit. I didn’t want to be like that. Plus I wanted to do my homework first to find out what I could and couldn’t juice and what fruits offered the best vitamins and minerals. One of the things that I learned quite quickly is that guava fruit has five times more Vitamin C than oranges. I also learned about the benefits of other fruits like mangoes and pineapples as well as vegetables such as kale and carrots. Right from day one I substituted my unhealthy breakfast for a juice but had normal meals for lunch and dinner. Most days I juiced two or three times depending on whether I felt hungry or was feeling tired. At the same time that I started juicing I also quit coffee. Surprisingly, juicing every day meant that I was never fatigued and easily lasted the day without any desire for coffee.

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For the last two months I have had fun not only juicing a large variety of fruit and vegetables, but also exploring local markets for the first time. Normally I buy my fruit and vegetables with my weekly shopping at Foodland. But, you can pay twice as much there as you do elsewhere. With my bicycle, I was able to visit local markets whenever I needed to re-stock during the week. But, don’t make the mistake in thinking that these markets are cheaper than Big C and Tesco Lotus. Take carrots for an example, at Paknam Market they are usually 35-40 Baht a kilo. At Big C they are selling for 26-27 Baht at the moment. But then, other things like kale and bananas are cheaper down the market. It didn’t take me long to remember what is a good price. Another thing to remember is that down the market they might have two or three piles of fruit like guava. The cheapest pile at only 20 Baht a kilo were apparently “ugly”. As I was going to juice them I didn’t really mind. Same goes for oranges. Sometimes the 25 Baht a kilos ones are just as good as the ones double the price.

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I had been juicing for about six weeks and was feeling great. I had a lot more energy during the day and I wasn’t missing coffee at all. So, I decided that the time was right to start my juice detox. This is sometimes called a “reboot” which I think sums up the process very nicely. There is a website called Reboot with Joe that accompanies the documentary that I mentioned earlier. Most people go for a 7-10 day juice detox. As I had heard that the first few days might be tough, I decided to begin during the recent long weekend here in Thailand. This would enable me to take it easy as my body adjusts to this new routine. However, I think doing the six weeks preparation, and also quitting coffee and other vices in advance, meant that I was able to sail through the long weekend with little difficulty. In fact the days have been passing quickly and I have already reached Day 8 as I write this. As I am feeling great I will finish the full ten days which is this Sunday. At the moment, my plan next week is to go back to juicing for breakfast but having normal meals for the rest of the day. But, I will also cook more often.

UPDATE: Click here to see my blog for two months later.

38 thoughts on “Juicing in Thailand

  1. I have always been told to be careful with juicing as the sugar content in some fruits is very high and you are also extracting the very healthy fibre which is not only good for the digestive system but also keeps you feeling fuller for longer.

    Instead of juicing I use a blender where the fruits and vegs are blended with a little additional water. You get all the same benefits of juice but with additional fibre.

    1. You need to do your homework about the different fruit first and then always do a mixture in each juice. A good | @TiminPhuket, though, is always to have a glass of water afterwards. I actually bought a blender the other day and use that sometimes just for a change. But juices are far easier to digest than smoothies and so less work for your body.

  2. I think the fat, sick and nearly dead fella is American, not Australian. I like what you are doing, very interesting. Not for me though as I enjoy the joy that eating brings with family and friends etc not just having a shake.

    1. He is Australian but the documentary was set in America. I’m only juicing for my three meals as part of the detox process for 7-10 days. This is like giving the body a reboot. Once over, I only intend to juice once a day for breakfast to make sure that I get all my daily allowance of vitamins and minerals. The rest of the day I will eat as I did before.

  3. Great article. I just started juicing myself last month when a friend leant me his masticating juicer. Like you, for the first time I now have a sense of what price is good for a carrot, apple, etc. I love treating myself to a fruit mix from time to time, but most of my juices are veggie blends with maybe one apple for some sweetness. I start every day with one now, and I’m going to buy my own juicer (my friend wants his back!).

    Will like to hear a follow up from you in a few more months to see how the overall effect is.

    1. Thanks. I may later buy a masticating juicer as being slower means the juice can last longer. Did your friend buy in Thailand? If so what brand? There aren’t many here nor good prices.

      1. It’s a Versapers juicer, he has a friend who imports them and sells them here. It’s essentially the same price as the Hurom juicer sold at Central Chitlom, 12,800. I’ve read great reviews of Hurom who virtually invented the slow technology, and the Versapers looks almost identical from the outside. A friend in the USA has the USA brand made by Hurom and loves his. If you want more info about getting a Versapers let me know and I’ll get it to you.

          1. Hi again Richard, Sorry for the delay but I wanted to get accurate contact information for you. For anybody interested in a Versapers Slow Juicer, this is who to contact:

            David Mioduski
            New World Wellness Co. Ltd.
            36/3 Moo 1, Soi Kokyang, Rawai, Phuket 83130
            ph. 0806978780
            David@NewWorldMedicine.com

            David is located in Phuket but says he can deliver his juicers into Bangkok and elsewhere as well. I hope this information is helpful. Feel free to let him know you heard about it here on Richard’s blog!!

  4. Hello Richard.

    I’m thinking that a juice for breakfast might be a good idea. I’ve gone from eating plenty of fruit and veg in the UK to getting very little here. I’m also a colitis sufferer so I think it might help my digestive system too.

    What are your favourite blends?

    What model number was your juicer? I have a Phillips blender set that is very good, but I think a juicer would be better for this.

    Cheers
    Andy

  5. Hi Richard,
    Have seen your blog about juicing and then the movie about Joe cross.
    I’ll give it a try
    Just bought a Philips juicer, same as yours, and I have started to juice twice a day
    Can not see yet the benefits, but I plan to start a fast 6 April for 15 days
    Hopefully, I’ll be able to make it!

    1. For me the most obvious benefit was not missing or even needing coffee as I quit the day I started juicing. Don’t rush into the juice detox otherwise you will get bad withdrawal symptoms.

      1. Got it!
        Coffee should not be a problem…I drink very little
        I already cut carbs for a while, but I feel that my meat/fat intake is way too much.

        Thanks for advices!

      2. Hi there
        I have started juicing Sunday 7 April
        I have been drinking juices only, fruits, vegetables
        Checked my weight this morning, and I was amazed to see that I lost 2.8 kgs….in 3 days
        Feeling absolutely great! No hunger, no side effects.
        I will juice 15 days…

        1. Thats because there is no food inside you and you have also lost some water due to water retention. The moment you go back to eating normally that weight will pretty much all come back. There is no way you can lose over 2 kilos of fat in 3 days drinking fructose laden juice. The only way to lose weight is through sustained healthy eating and exercise.

          1. Absolutely correct……..but, it is weight loss, and as I don’t feel any side effect, it also means that my body is getting some from the fat I stored.
            It is encouraging, and actually, I think it can not be bad

            Thank you for your positive and so motivating input

        2. Not getting any side effects doesnt mean you are getting energy from the fat stores. In fact if you were feeling lethargic (side effect of not eating) it would indicate that you were burning fat as your body would have burned up all the carbs from the sugar in the juice you are guzzling.

          What does your sarcastic comment about being positive and motivating mean? Why do you need motivating to drink a load of juice every day? Forgive me if I’m wrong here but your initial excitement about the initial weight loss as well as this need for people to tell you what you want to hear and to motivate you leads me to believe you are overweight, have tried many different ways to lose weight without much success and this is the latest get thin quick scheme you are trying?

          If so let me tell you this. People giving you realistic advice on what is actually happening is going to help you a lot more than positive bullshit. SInce the dawn of time not a single calorie has been burned by telling fat people what they want to hear. They need to be told what the NEED to hear. Often what they want to hear and need to hear are two very different things and will conveniently shut out what the dont want to hear.

          If you are using this juice fast as a way to lose weight then you will ultimately fail. Because it isnt sustainable. Lets say you consume approx 1400 calories in juice a day. Thats about 900 less than you need so over a week you have a deficit of 6,300 calories. There is 7700 calories in a kilo of fat so you will still be burning less than a kilo a week. And if you think its all going to come from fat you’re wrong there too. A diet consisting of fruit juice contains no protein. What is required to build and repair muscle? Yep, protein. So by drinking juice for 2 weeks you wont lose more than 1.5 kilos and some of that loss will be a result of muscle loss. Lean muscle burns calories, fat doesnt so at the end you metabolism will be even slower than when you started. Within 2 weeks you will be back to where you started. Not what you want to hear right? But sadly its the truth.

          I know this because I tried all these short cuts and none of them worked. What I finally realised is that you cant cheat weight loss. You need to do two things. Firstly, you need to eat sensibly and that means no empty carbs such as sugar etc and no simple carbs such as refined flour, white rice etc. Google will show you the difference between simple and complex carbs. Them mix your complex carbs with some lean protein. Protein fills you up for longer than carbs or fat so eating more of it will help you feel fuller for longer.

          Secondly you need to exercise. 5 days a week. Without fail. iMonday swimming, tuesday walk for 2 hours. Wednesday swimming. Thursday take a break. Friday jog for 20 minutes if you feel ready for it. Combine that with eating proper healthy, unprocessed foods and the weight will come off. It wont be overnight and there will be weeks when nothing will seem to shift but over 3 months if you stick to it you will lose 10 kilos. This is how I lost over 22kg after trying all the juice fasting shortcut cheating techniques that your body ultimately wont be fooled by.

          Accept that, get with the program and I’ll give you all the motivation you need to succeed.

          1. Juicing can help you lose weight as it helps you digest your food and speeds up your metabulism , you are right about the protien and I sugest you use Chia seeds as part of your diet. look it up on the internet

  6. Hi Richard ,

    Your juicing article spurred me on to buy a juicing machine and give it a try , about my self I started to feel more and more tired and over weight , I’m not really into junk food or large amounts of coffee or alcohol. I just wanted to feel better about my self and drop some weight , I have never been into exercising only the occasional bicycle ride . ive now been on juice only for 24 days , with my start original weight of 83.25Kg .

    Fairly quickly into my juicing regime I lost 4Kg , and felt spurred on to go for a longer period , I only weigh myself at seven day intervals at the same time in the morning . My current weight is 78.6Kg but the weight loss rate seems to have considerably slowed down .

    I’m now wondering if there may be a problem with the types of fruit and vegetables that I am using with regard to their sugar ( fructose ) / calorie content . Ive read several on line articles on that subject , but no real advice .

    I must all so say that after the current 24 days of only juicing , I do not generally feel any more energy and still feel sluggish ( could be to do with the current high temperatures here in Thailand ) , may be I’m expecting too much too quickly.

    I’m going to stick it out for a longer period just to see and feel the end results

    Cheers

    Ian

    1. Are you exercising as well as that is important? You will find that you will lose more weight at the start and then it will slow down as you approach your normal weight for your height. I did the juicing detox for two weeks and now just one meal a day at lunch time and juice for breakfast and dinner. So basically I don’t eat after noon. I didn’t plan it that way. My idea after the detox was to only juice for breakfast but I found that one meal at lunch was enough to keep me going for the rest of the day. Maybe you want to try that idea.

    2. Hi Ian

      The initial 4kg is a combination of water weight and also having less food inside you at any time. Thats why there is an initial big drop. the reality is that 4kg is not fat loss. You should be aiming for no more than a 1kg decrease in weight per week after this initial period which will come from burning fat. As a rough guide a pound of fat is approx 3500 calories so you would need a deficit of double this every week to burn a kilo of fat. To put this in perspective you would burn approx 100 calories walking or jogging one mile. So aim to walk or jog 25 miles a week and consume no more than 1400 calories a day.

      Juice has a high level of sugar (fructose) in it but very little fibre so it doesn’t fill you up. Although of course you do get the vitamins etc.

      For sustainable long term weight loss you should eat sensibly and exercise regularly so there is a calorie deficit, In other words just consume less calories than you burn.

    1. Great to hear that you have decided to start juicing. I’ve never looked back since I started. Well worth the investment. I don’t see this as a diet or a fad. Its more of an investment into my health.

      1. today is day 8 of my juicing
        5 kgs down
        Feeling real good. I’ll do 7 more days, and then I’ll keep on juicing twice a day and have a normal meal a day

        1. That sounds good. That is basically what I’m doing now. Juice for breakfast. Eat what I like at lunchtime (but not junk food) and then usually a smoothie or something light in the evening as I’m not usually hungry any more. The light meal is usually vegetable soup (either carrot or sweetcorn) that I make myself.

  7. Hi Richard,

    And for those who simply lack the time freshly ready made Freshly made Juices” are commercially available.

    The fact that when you juice you actually consume a lot more vegetables, fruits and herbs than normally, it is important to consider the potential health impact of using non organic produce due to excess intake of chemically produced vegetables and fruits which could also carry pesticide residues. (and it simply tastes a lot better!)

    Regards,
    Martin H.J.Smetsers
    Phuket

  8. Hi! It’s such a coincidence that I saw the documentary and bought a juicer the same time you did! I was searching on where to buy kale in Bangkok and your site popped up. Any suggestions? The Chinese Kale available in the markets here look nothing like the ones they use for using.

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