Hana James, co-founder of a thriving juice company, on the (delicious) benefits of cold-pressed juice
To say that not all juices are created equal is an understatement. Some are little more than liquid sugar that might taste good at brunch but don’t deliver very much nutritional value at all. However, some juice bars are serving up healthy powerhouses that help you get your fruits and veggies in a whole new way. Hana James co-founded Greenhouse, an organic plant-based beverage company in Toronto that rapidly gained a devoted following, expanding to fourteen locations, more than two hundred points of sale at other retailers and a delivery service in just a few years.
What’s the story? “Our juice is cold-pressed juice, and the great thing about cold-pressed juice is that we use hydraulic pressure to extract the nutrients. This minimizes the heat and oxidization [that damages nutrients] that is typical of other juicing processes like using a blender,” says Hana. “You’re left with a very nutrient-dense juice. It’s very much alive: the colours are really vibrant and the taste is really potent.”
Hana adds that the cold-pressing method removes insoluble fibre. “We’re huge fans of fibre, and every diet needs lots of it. However, what’s fantastic about having these raw, alive nutrients without any insoluble fibre is your body can absorb the nutrients easily. Digestion is one of our body’s greatest energy strains, so to get that level of nutrients, without having to do any work [of digestion] is an amazing feeling.”
Here are some other juicing terms to add to your wellness vocabulary:
Raw Juices that are raw mean that they haven’t been treated with techniques like heat or pressure. Raw juices are fine for healthy people to consume, but pregnant women, infants, and anyone who avoids raw products should steer clear.
Pasteurization This is a technique that uses a high level of heat in a short period of time to kill bacteria and slow down microbial growth—a good approach, but also one that zaps beneficial bacteria and microbes.
High pressure processing (HPP) or pascalization Instead of heat, this process uses pressure to preserve and sterilize foods. Sealed plastic bottles of juice go into a machine and then water pressure is applied. This approach keeps more taste and health benefits when compared to heat pasteurization and extends the shelf life of the juice, but requires plastic containers because glass bottles can’t take the pressure, which isn’t so great for the environment.
Hana James, Toronto, Co-founder and director of community, Greenhouse