An honest account of what to expect from your first green juice


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During a recent trip to Trader Joe’s, I stopped dead in my tracks. What was that disgusting-looking green stuff staring at me from a large end-cap display? You guessed it: delectable-sounding pasteurized green-food juice blend. Mmmmmm.

Call me late to the game, but until now, I had never tried a green juice. Fruit juice, of course. Veggie juice, indeed. But no wheatgrass shots, green smoothies or similar products had ever made it down my gullet. Feeling adventurous for a Sunday morning, I loaded a bottle into my shopping basket.

After chilling my purchase, I inspected the label and was surprised to learn that it contained several fruit juices and purees in addition to the green ingredients like barley grass, spinach and broccoli. This was news to me — if it contained fruit, why did it look so awful? Needing to find the answers to my burning questions, I opened the bottle, poured and observed:

The look: Frankly, it looks grotesque. I guess a bright, beautiful green color wasn’t achievable, because this looks like mud water — or worse.

The smell: I was expecting it to be awful, but it smells like pineapple! I really should have tried this stuff years ago.

The taste: Unbelievable. This green stuff tastes exactly like fruit juice. If it wasn’t green, I would never know it was packed with veggies.

The texture: Pretty thick for a juice, but luckily there aren’t any big green globs in sight.

The verdict: It’s a surprising win — as long as I don’t look at the color while drinking. 

Green juices are packed with nutrients, including iron, magnesium and vitamins A and C. Research shows that more than 60% of Americans don’t eat as many fruits and veggies as they should — and people tend to consume more fruits than vegetables. 

That makes green juice a no-brainer for people who want to easily boost their veggie intake, with fruits as an added bonus. Fresh juices reign supreme, since produce is most nutritious when raw. However, many people don’t have the inclination or equipment to make their own juices at home. 

Luckily, at least one type of pasteurized green juice can be found at most grocery stores, so we can save ourselves the effort, not to mention the mess. Just keep in mind that the fruit juices do contribute a good amount of sugar, so don’t overdo it. Go ahead and try it — we dare you.