There is nothing like some fresh cold juice on a hot summer day. Those colourful liquids brim with major health advantages and boost immunity. These immunity-boosting minerals are naturally available in most fruits and vegetables, and juicing them allows easy absorption in your body.
Juicing breaks down the fibre content present in fruits and promotes the production of digestive enzymes. However, it is beneficial to consume only fresh juices, as the packaged ones have additives that may prove to be more harmful than useful. They contaminate the phytonutrients of these nature-derived products and lower their benefits.
It is always ideal to drink fresh juices right away, but since that is hardly possible, we need to know the shelf life of juices and how to maintain their freshness for a longer duration.
How long can juice last in the fridge?
Juice life relies on a range of factors and even the type of juicer you used to make it. Let’s find out what these are.
1. Heat aspect
The heat produced while juicing fruits has absolutely no effect on its life. It does not speed up the degradation process. It only destroys some enzymes in negligible quantities.
Oxidisation happens when you juice fruits or vegetables that breaks the cell walls and makes them come in direct contact with air. However, it is pretty unavoidable and happens even when you chop fruits or vegetables.
When it comes to juicers, centrifugal juicers are notorious for stimulating the oxidisation process quicker than the others as they sport high-speed spinning blades. However, oxidation is a natural process and happens the more you leave your juices sitting outside. Thus it is important to consume them as soon as possible.
Can you slow the oxidisation process?
While it is impossible to completely stop the oxidisation process, you can definitely slow it down. Here are some methods that can help you in doing so.
1. Do not completely juice the fibres.
Retaining some fibre constituents in the juice slows the oxidisation process and increase the juice’s life when coupled with refrigeration.
2. Vitamin C
You can add some citrus to your juices by simply squeezing a lemon or two. Ascorbic acid is a natural preservative and can slow down oxidisation while adding an exciting tanginess!
3. Proper Storage
This one is somewhat obvious, but make sure that your store your juices in airtight containers. Try to always store them in glass containers as they are free of toxins, unlike plastic or metallic ones. Moreover, the low pH levels of juices may cause a leak in plastic jars.
4. Fill containers to the brim
If you intend to freeze the fresh juice, make sure there is enough room in the container because frozen juice can often expand. If you are simply going to keep the juice in the refrigerator, though, you should fill the container all the way to the brim.
Once you do this, ensure that the container is completely airtight. If you fill the glass jar all the way to the top, you will avoid oxidation and preserve the juice healthy by prolonging its life.
5. Refrigerate as soon as possible
If you are not going to consume the juice immediately, you should bottle it and keep it in the refrigerator. As previously stated, putting juice out in the open is similar to letting fresh fruit out in the open – it will shortly deteriorate. When you are done juicing, put the liquid in a glass vessel with a tight lid and keep it away. You may come back to it at any time and have a delicious cold sip!
6. Vacuum Sealing
Despite the fact that many people are unfamiliar with vacuum sealing their containers, it is a very efficient technique for preserving the freshness of juices for longer durations. Some manufacturers are even developing tools that will seal containers for you since it is getting more common.
How long can I store juice in the fridge?
It is advisable to drink your juices within 24 hours of preparing them to reap full benefits and absorb all the nutrients present. If that is not possible and you need to refrigerate the extra, you should consume them within 72 hours of putting them in there.
This is because fresh juice is heavy with nutritious elements, vitamins, minerals, and other essential minerals. Every one of these components can only be obtained through freshly squeezed juice, not juice that has been preserved for days.
The same may be said about store-bought juices. They may taste fantastic, but they aren’t quite as beneficial for you or your body as freshly squeezed juice. Fresh juice may offer you a variety of benefits, including improved digestion, more stamina, higher antioxidants, and even weight loss.
The kind of juicer you use to juice your fruits also partakes as a factor in its longevity. A Centrifugal juicer will make your juice last up to a day or 24 hours. If you use a Masticating juicer, your juice will be fit for consumption for up to 48 hours. Juices can last up to 4-5 days if they are squeezed using a Twin Gear juicer. It is so because Twin Gears insulate juices against oxidation and preserve their health for a longer duration.
In the end, the only way you can retain the freshness of juices is by refrigerating them. Cold temperatures are the key!
How long does juice last in a freezer?
If you wish to preserve the fresh juice for longer than a handful of days, place it in the freezer rather than the fridge. This will assist you in preventing the juice from degrading for up to six months.
One factor to bear in mind when preserving your fresh juice is that juice is similar to water and can stretch when chilled. This implies that you will just have to fill 2/3 of the jar while putting it, or perhaps only half of it. Always do this to prevent the juice from exploding out of the jar, regardless of the material it is built of.
One thing to take into consideration when it comes to frozen juice is that it sheds the majority of its benefits after three months. This means that when you take it out of the freezer, it will mimic plain water rather than the fresh juice you made weeks ago.
If you wish to preserve fresh juice, an excellent approach to try is freezing it in ice cube moulds. When you peel them out of the tray, they will taste delicious, and you will be able to use them with some fresh water for a perfect summer day therapy!
When do juices start to lose their nutritional value?
Fresh juice is supposed to be consumed right after you squeeze it because it is only then when the nutrients are all intact. Its nutritional value starts to deteriorate within 30 mins of making it.
If you chop any fruit or vegetable and let it sit out in the open, it will start turning brown from the inside. Therefore, leaving anything exposed to air for longer than 10 minutes is never the best idea, and they should either be consumed or refrigerated.
Is it safe to juice a day before?
You may not have the time to squeeze fresh juice every day, and if it is an important day tomorrow or if you just need your daily vitamins, it is okay to prepare juices a day in advance. Juices can stay in the fridge for 72 hours after making and it would be safe to drink them.
However, the nutrient loss is unstoppable. The juice will lose some of its nutrients by the time you drink it, i.e.: the next day. Nevertheless, you should be cautious while storing it in the fridge and use non-toxic containers to get the most out of it when you have it the next day.
If you prepare fresh juice beforehand, have it the first thing in the morning and on an empty stomach rather than later in the evening. This will allow you to absorb a decent amount of carbohydrates, which will be beneficial to your gut and overall health.
Do some fruit juices go bad quicker than the others? Does the type of fruit play any role in fruit juice deterioration?
Generally, as an all-encompassing principle, fruit juices go bad all the same, and the type of fruits rarely have got to do anything with the rate of deterioration. The most noticeable form of differences exist between fresh juices and store-bought cartons.
These differences surface in the composition, with the readymade juices containing artificial preservatives and sugar. They tend to last longer due to these additions, but it is always advised to check the expiration date and consumption warnings on the label before consuming it.
Squeezing juice at home gives you a completely organic and natural drink that is free of preservatives and added sugar. That undeniably brings greater health benefits and brilliantly compensates for the shorter shelf life. You should always pick natural ingredients over longevity if you had to.
The advantages of drinking fresh juices are abundant, and you should consider making it a staple part of your diet. This article discussed the various intricacies involved with properly storing juices and how long they remain fresh in the fridge. It cannot be emphasised enough that you should consume fresh juice as soon as possible after making it. It carries valuable nutrients that your body will thank you for!