Get juiced with the modern Paleo Diet lifestyle!

The Difference Between a Masticating and Centrifugal Juicer

When it comes to juicing, you want to yield as much juice as possible from your raw [organic] vegetables and fruits or plant roots and grasses.

If you’re unfamiliar with the world of juice extractors, the first thing that you need to know is that juicers fall into two main categories: centrifugal juicers and masticating juicers.

In simple defining terms, centrifugal means moving or directed away from a center or axis, whereas masticating means to chew, to grind or knead into a pulp.


Centrifugal Juicers:

Centrifugal juicers are the most common of juicers, mostly seen in stores and on TV, and in general they are more affordable.  These machines typically have an upright design and a wide mouth tube to feed the produce. They typically utilize a fast-spinning metal blade that spins against a mesh filter, to shred the food into a pulp, where the centrifugal motion separates juice from flesh through the mesh filter. It is then stored into different containers for the pulp and the extracted juice. The problem with centrifugal juicers is that the fast-spinning metal blade generates heat, which destroys some of the enzymes in the produce you juice right away. The heat also oxidizes those nutrients, rendering less nutritious juice, as opposed to a masticating juicer. Centrifugal juicers work best with soft and hard fruits and vegetables, but not quite as well with leafy greens like kale, spinach, or grasses such as wheat-grass. Centrifugal juicers can range from $100 to $150 for most good-quality brands. Popular centrifugal juicers include Jack LaLanne’s Power Juicer, Breville (as seen in Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead), Juiceman, and others.


Masticating Juicers:

Masticating juicers typically have a horizontal design in which a tube containing the grinding mechanism (auger) extends out of a motorized base. The auger crushes and grinds the pieces of produce that are fed into the tube, squeezing out the juice and storing it in a container placed underneath the tube. Meanwhile, the remaining pulp is squeezed out into a container placed at the end of the tube. This process helps to yield as much juice as possible and due to the slower crushing and squeezing action, much less heat is generated, retaining most of the nutrients and enzymes from the freshly made juice. Since a masticating juicer works at low speeds and with no spinning action, it tends to juice many vegetables more efficiently. A masticating juicer is especially good at juicing the very important green leafy vegetables such as wheat-grass, spinach, parsley, cilantro, kale, Swiss chard, etc. Masticating juicers are typically a bit more expensive than centrifugal juicers ranging from $200 to $350 for most entry level models. Some of the brands to look for are Omega (I use the Omega 8006, found here which I highly recommend as an affordable yet strong product), Lexen, Green Star, Champion, among others.


The Difference:

In a jiffy, centrifugal juicers work at high speeds, and tend to be noisy and much harder to clean as opposed to the low speed action of a masticating juicer, which allows you to juice more vegetables with greater efficiency. A masticating juicer tends to be a lot more quiet, less messy and easier to clean. In addition, nutritionist and healthy cooking expert Robyn Youkilis offers her two cents about the advantages of a masticating juicer, in this Men’s Fitness Magazine Q&A:

A masticating juicer has several advantages:

  • Juice retains more nutrients because fruits and vegetables aren’t shredded with blades, which exposes the produce to air and speeds up oxidation.
  • You get more juice from your produce. A centrifugal juicer doesn’t extract as much juice ounce per ounce, and therefore using a masticating model can save you money on produce.
  • When using a masticating model, the juice you end up with retains more pulp.  Because of this, pressed juices have more fiber and even a little protein.

It’s also worth noting the versatility of a masticating juicer. Since a masticating juicer squeezes the items you put into it, you can use it to make baby food, fresh pasta, grind meat and to make nut butter. For an extended look into the comparison of the two types of juicers, visit Juicing for Health‘s Sara Ding and her website, found here.

Make the most informed decision for yourself when it comes to purchasing a juicer and HAPPY JUICING!

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