The Best Juicers for Losing Weight and More

If you’ve spent more time and money than you care to calculate trying to lose weight, you probably feel inundated by the products, pills, and potions that promise results but don’t deliver as advertised, cost too much to be practical, or cause side effects that interfere with your life.  Maybe you’re looking for a simpler, more natural way to get healthier.  If so, you might realize that increasing your intake of vegetables and fruits is key.  Certainly, eating your recommended daily amount of veggies and fruits is the best answer, but juicing can be the next best thing.  Juicing involves removing the liquid from your chosen produce and leaving the solids behind.  There are any number of commercially-available juices, but making your own can be more cost effective while avoiding the artificial ingredients present in so many of the store-bought brands.

Buying a juicer can be confusing because there are tons of brands and models to consider, especially given the increasing number of people getting into healthy juicing.  Understanding the basic functions of any juicer can help make the process easier whether your budget is under $50 or well into the hundreds.

Types of juicers

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Masticating juicers crush and press produce to extract the juice, similar to the chewing process.  These models typically produce more juice, but can be pricier and slower than centrifugal models.

Centrifugal juicers chop produce into pulp and then spin that pulp to separate liquid from solid.  They are among the most popular electric models and tend to be the least expensive.  They do tend to produce less juice than masticating models, and the spinning process can heat the juice up a bit.

There are also citrus juicers designed specifically for citrus fruits and wheatgrass juicers that are meant for wheatgrass and some softer fruits and vegetables.

Size and weight

If your counter space is limited, be sure to look for models that will fit securely in the space you have or are light enough that you can easily go from cabinet to counter and back again.

Preparation and capacity

Your fresh fruits and vegetables go into the juicer via its intake chute.  Some models have smaller chutes, which means you’ll have to spend a bit more time chopping produce into smaller pieces.  Machines with larger chutes can take less time to load.

There are three things to understand when it comes to capacity.  The first is how much raw produce will fit into the machine at once.  If you can’t fit enough to make as much juice as you want, you’ll have to reload during the process.  Next, make sure you know how much juice the machine can hold.  Smaller reservoirs may be fine if you only want to make one or two servings at a time, but you’ll want a bigger reservoir for bigger batches.  Lastly, you need to know how much solid waste (pulp) a juicer can handle without emptying.  Again, a smaller capacity means it will take longer to make larger quantities of juice.

Power and speed

While having the most power doesn’t necessarily make a juicer the best there is, power is a good indication of how efficiently the machine operates.  A more powerful motor can make quicker work of a greater variety of produce and can do a better job of separating more liquid from solid, resulting in more juice per piece.  More powerful motors are generally a bit noisier and do usually drive up the price a bit, but it is probably worth the cost if you want to juice a large variety of vegetables and fruits.  How fast a juicer does its work is definitely related to how powerful the motor is–stronger motor equals faster speed.  Some models, though, come with a variable speed control that can make juicing a variety of items more efficient.

Cleaning

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You will need to clean the juicer thoroughly after each use, so look for a model with easy-clean features to save yourself time and aggravation.

For reviews of many different brands and types, top juicers offers a list of some of the best, along with links to recipes and tips on juicing for kids.

Singing Tips You Need Now

If you’re an aspiring singer, you probably already know that practicing your craft daily is essential.  But incorporating the follow tips and tricks into your daily routine can be invaluable in helping you reach new vocal heights.

Posture and breathing

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Having good posture helps you move air more effectively.  Good posture, along with a strong core, can make it easier to maintain the strong, even breathing necessary to keep your singing steady and powerful.  Learning to control your breathing in a manner that keeps the ribs expanded lets air move more freely, allowing you to manage your air more efficiently.  Given that vocals are powered by air, it’s not a stretch to think of ourselves as wind instruments.  Controlling intake and outflow permits the steadiest output of sound.  A good vocal coach can and should recommend some excellent exercises to help you learn to control your breathing.  Do not dismiss these as unnecessary.  Failure to learn proper breathing techniques will keep you from reaching your full singing potential.  This is true no matter what type of singing you wish to do.  Long notes or short, low ones or high–all demand attention to breathing.

Get comfortable

If you’re serious about taking your vocal skills to the next level (or finding talent deep within), a good vocal coach is the best investment you can make in your singing future.  The first step to finding the right coach is to go beyond credentials and experience.  Your best hope lies in finding someone who is a good fit for your personality, learning style, and long-term goals.  Getting time with the most highly regarded vocal coach in the world won’t be optimally beneficial if the two of you just don’t click.  It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you or the coach; it just means that your styles don’t jive.

Once you’ve found a coach whose style works well with your own, you need to learn to leave your nerves and expectations of instant perfection in the past.  Being afraid that your coach will think you’re horrible or hopeless will keep you from being relaxed enough to sing your best.  Trying too hard to sound like your favorite singer robs you of the ability to discover your own unique voice, and trying to sound like someone you’re not will require more effort than just letting your own voice shine.

While it’s true that not all of us are destined to spend our lives singing on the biggest stages in the world, and while we have definitely all heard singing that we wished would stop, we shouldn’t fall into the trap of believing that singing is some magical thing.  In reality, the body parts and processes we use to speak are the exact same ones used for singing.  The difference is that singing involves a more intentional directing of the same air and sound used for speech.  In other words, singing isn’t some random talent bestowed on only a few fortunate souls; instead, it is something that we all can learn given enough time, patience, and practice.

Once you are able to relax about the process of singing, you’ll find it easier to focus on your breathing and on turning speech into music.

Feel the music

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If you want to be a better singer, there’s a good chance you’re a fan of music in general.  Don’t forget that music drives the singing.  Let the positive vibe you get from music stay with you and guide you.  There will be times when you feel tired and frustrated, but don’t let those feelings rob you of the joy and happiness that you find in music.  With vocal training, as with anything else, a positive attitude can go a long way.

Practice, practice, practice

Though there are some people for whom beautiful singing comes fairly naturally, most aspiring singers need help finding and fine tuning their voices.  This process takes time.  How much time depends on several factors, the most important of which is the amount of effort you put in.  Be patient with yourself and practice breathing and vocal exercises every chance you get, and your reward will be worth the price of admission.