Juice from a centrifugal juicer contains about 15% fewer nutrients, which is a minimal amount overall. This information was the only unbiased, well-tested data I was able to find on the matter. There has been no scientific testing done to determine if heat and oxidation are true factors in that 15% difference in nutrition. But if the heat from a centrifugal juicer doesn’t destroy nutrients, why is there less overall?
Masticating cold press juicers extract more nutrients; that much is a fact. So while it is possible and widely accepted in the juicing community that the heat and oxidation from centrifugal juicers create a lesser quality juice, there is no current evidence that they destroy the juice’s nutrients.
Of course, companies will always want to prove that their product is better than the competition; that’s only natural. However, my goal is to represent that information in the most honest, straightforward way so that you can make the purchasing decision that’s right for you.
I want to share both arguments below and allow you to draw your own conclusions. Then, we’ll cover the pros and cons of centrifugal juicers when compared with cold press juicers.
ARGUMENTS FOR & AGAINST CENTRIFUGAL JUICERS DESTROYING NUTRIENTS
It is believed that centrifugal juicers destroy nutrients for two reasons: heat and oxidation.
Centrifugal juicers are faster than masticating juicers, and that speed is the problem. Speed produces heat, which breaks down nutrients and enzymes in the juice. This creates less nutritional juice. Oxidation also occurs. Grinding fruits and vegetables to extract the juice exposes the produce’s cell walls, allowing oxygen to react with the natural chemicals inside. The machine’s speed exaggerates this process; it reduces the quality of the juice and its shelf-life.
The argument that centrifugal juicers destroy nutrients is partially based in reality: some nutrients and enzymes begin to break down when heated or exposed to oxygen. However, many vitamins remain stable when heated. And there is no evidence suggesting that a juicer’s heat can break these nutrients down so quickly.
Juicers that produce heat are very quick; it follows that the heat produced doesn’t have a chance to destroy the nutrients. However, since centrifugal juicers are often much faster than cold press juicers, oxidation is inevitable. This is most observable when comparing the color of juice created and how long the juice remains fresh (in taste) when stored.
Nonetheless, there is no evidence to suggest that the oxidized juice from a centrifugal juicer is significantly worse than that from a cold press juicer. Though the resulting juices are observably different depending on your machine’s quality, the nutritional value is not necessarily affected.
CENTRIFUGAL JUICER VS. COLD PRESS (MASTICATING) JUICER
Centrifugal juicers use speed and spinning to mash your fruits and vegetables into a pulp before straining. Simultaneously, cold press masticating juicers use one or two gears to grind fruits and vegetables, similar to a chewing jaw.
PROS OF CENTRIFUGAL JUICER
- Slightly less cleanup
CONS OF CENTRIFUGAL JUICER
- Less juice extracted from produce.
- Can’t juice leafy greens or wheatgrass well
Centrifugal juicers generally have fewer parts than masticating juicers, which can make the cleanup process slightly quicker. Since they are high speed, the juicing process is almost instantaneous. And of course, Centrifugal juicers are widely available and therefore generally less expensive.
However, the speed of centrifugal juicers often means they are louder machines when running. Leftover pulp from centrifugal juicers is also far wetter than those from masticating juicers, suggesting that cold press juicers can extract significantly more juice from produce. Cold press masticating juicers can also be juicing leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and wheatgrass. Whereas centrifugal juicers are not.
WHICH JUICER IS RIGHT FOR YOU?
I hope you have a much greater understanding of how centrifugal juicers do and do not affect the nutritional value of juice and the information to decide whether a centrifugal juicer is a right choice for you or not.
Overall, what matters most is that you choose a juicer you’ll use. Regardless of whether it’s a centrifugal juicer or masticating juicer, the juicer that will provide the most nutritional value is the one on your countertop. If you have any questions, please feel free to comment.