Raw Sugarcane Juice Nature's Perfect Wonder Food PDF Print E-mail
Written by Dee McCaffrey, CDC   
Monday, October 03, 2011

If you've ever had the pleasure of drinking freshly extracted raw fruit or vegetable juices, you know the health value of doing so. Freshly extracted juices contain live enzymes and nutrients that are easily absorbed by the body for quick nourishment.  But did you know that raw sugarcane juice is just as healthful as any other freshly pressed juice, and is in fact something of a Super Hero among plant foods?

Sugarcane is a tall grass with a stout, jointed and fibrous stalk that looks similar to bamboo.  As a member of the grass family, its juice has a high potency equivalent to wheatgrass juice, only with less chlorophyll and more sugar content.  However, counter to what you might think, sugarcane juice contains only about fifteen percent total sugar content, all of which is in a raw unrefined form.  The rest of the juice consists of water brimming with an abundance of vitamins and minerals. Sugarcane is rich in calcium, chromium, cobalt, copper, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium and zinc.  It also contains iron and vitamins A, C, B1, B2, B3, B5, and B6, plus a high concentration of phytonutrients (including chlorophyll), antioxidants, proteins, soluble fiber and numerous other health supportive compounds.  Working synergistically, these nutrients provide a supremely health-promoting food which has been studied for its role in fighting cancer, stabilizing blood sugar levels in diabetics, assisting in weight loss, reducing fevers, clearing the kidneys, preventing tooth decay, and a host of other health benefits.

Sugarcane juice is consumed worldwide, and due to its known health benefits, it is a traditional food with a profound presence in the local cultures where it is grown (Brazil and India are the top two producers, though it is grown in over 100 countries). Sucking or chewing on an exposed end of the raw sugarcane is one way to consume the juice, although the juice can also be extracted in larger quantities for drinking, by feeding the large stalks through a slow moving roller pressing machine, similar to an old fashioned wringer washing machine. The locals drink it with a pinch of sea salt and lemon juice, for a natural high-energy drink whose value goes far beyond its sweet taste.

Several scientific studies have revealed that sugarcane is extremely high in a unique mix of compounds called polyphenols. Polyphenols are a large class of phytonutrient compounds with powerful antioxidant properties and numerous health benefits.  When consumed as a "whole package," the polyphenols in sugarcane juice work in harmony with the vitamins, minerals, and other cofactors to slow down the absorption of its sugars into the bloodstream, resulting in a very low glycemic index (the effect a carbohydrate has on blood glucose levels), which keeps the body's metabolism healthy and helps maintain a healthy body weight. To give you a comparison, the glycemic index of refined sugar is 64, compared to raw sugar cane which has a glycemic index of  30 to 40 (nearly half that of refined sugar) depending on the soil in which it is grown.

The low glycemic effect of sugarcane juice is actually the least of its health benefits. Due to its high concentration of calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, and manganese, the juice from raw sugarcane is an alkaline forming food.  Diseases, especially cancer, cannot live in an alkaline environment, so it's no surprise that studies have shown that it has proven effective in helping the body fight against cancer, especially prostate and breast cancer. The antioxidants in sugarcane juice also help to fight against viral and bacterial infections, boost the immune system, and protect against diseases of the liver.  It also improves kidney function by clearing the urinary flow and is believed to be a good treatment for fevers, as it boosts the body's protein levels.  An Australian study also showed that it stablizes blood sugar levels and promotes weight loss in obese rats.  Numerous studies since the 1930's have shown that sugarcane juice has a protective effect against tooth decay, owing to its high mineral content. Here are some more of sugarcane juice's healing effects:

  • It cures a sore throat, cold and flu.
  • Unlike table sugar, it has no simple sugars. Diabetics can therefore enjoy it without worrying about soaring blood sugar levels (those with type 2 diabetes should still have limited sugarcane juice).
  • It provides glucose to the body, burned by the muscles to provide the body natural energy. It re-hydrates the human body fatigued from heat and physical activity. It's known to boost performance in athletes and manual laborers.
  • It's recommended for fevers which cause great protein loss from the body. Liberal consumption of sugarcane juice provides the body with protein during febrile disorders. It also brings down high body temperatures during fevers.
  • It's an ideal thirst quencher and cooling drink during summers. It keeps the body hydrated.
  • The easily digestible sugar in sugarcane juice helps in speedy recovery from jaundice. The steep fall in glucose levels during jaundice; may be replenished by having 3 to 4 glasses of sugarcane juice daily.
  • It's good for the digestive system and also helps with constipation because of its high potassium content.
  • It has a wide range of compounds in addition to sucrose which bestows it with wound healing properties and strengthens the immune system.
  • Regular intake of sugarcane juice strengthens the stomach, kidneys, heart, eyes, brain and sex organs.
  • It lowers body cholesterol- both LDL and triglycerides.

If you're interested in seeing how sugarcane juice is pressed, here's a link to a short 2½ minute YouTube video that will give you a true appreciation for this wonder food.  Like all freshly extracted juices, sugarcane juice loses its nutritional value very quickly after being extracted, so it's very difficult to bottle without heat pasteuriztion (which unfortunately destroys the live enzymes and most of the beneficial nutrients).

sugarimageSUGARCANE ISLAND

However, there is one company that is using a new type of pasteurization called High Pressure Processing (HPP), in which thousand of pounds of pressure are applied to the juice to kill harmul bacteria, but because no heat is used the sugarcane juice remains in its healthy raw state.  This is not a cheap or easy way to pasteurize, but its the only way to keep the juice truly raw.  The wonderful company that is making raw sugarcane juice available to everyone is called Sugarcane Island.  They are a small upcoming company based out of Brooklyn, New York .  Their bottled sugarcane juice is wonderful, as close to fresh pressed as you can get!  I've tried it, so I speak from first hand knowledge. They sell it on their website, and hopefully they'll make it into natural food markets across the country someday soon.

FRESH PRESSED RAW SUGARCANE JUICE

There are some places around the country where you can get it fresh.  One place is called Raw Sugarcane Juice Bar, which has several southern California locations.  If you're ever in the area and want to try some fresh raw sugarcane juice, you should check them out.  For locations and more info, go to www.sugarcanejuice.org

The reason raw sugarcane juice is so healthy is because of all of the life-giving nutrients contained in it.  In the processing of raw sugarcane juice to create refined white sugar, the juice is boiled to evaporate off the water, leaving a dark thick viscous liquid, which is then separated from the sugar crystals.  Most of the nutrients, including the polyphenols, end up in the thick dark liquid, called molasses. Blackstrap molasses, made from the third boiling of sugarcane juice, is the most concentrated form of molasses, and is therefore the most nutritious. It is a healthful sweetener that contains significant amounts of a variety of minerals that promote your health, including iron, calcium, copper, potassium, magnesium and manganese.

If you're thinking that by just evaporating off the water you'll get a product called "evaporated cane juice," you'd be mostly wrong.  Organic Whole Cane Sugar or Sucanat, are the only types of raw unrefined sugar that do not separate the molasses from the sugar crystals, and therefore contain most of the nutrients, including the polyphenols, that are found in the raw sugarcane juice.  In the true sense of the term, they are evaporated forms of sugarcane juice, and are very dark course sugar crystals.  However, the term "evaporated cane juice" that you see listed on the ingredient lists of "healthy" food products IS NOT this type of sugar.  According to the CEO of ASSURKKAR Sugar Company in Costa Rica, which provides raw sugar to U.S. companies, the term is wrongly used in the food industry, "prostituted" he put it. "Nowadays the food companies are trying to sell more 'natural' products, so they use the most impressive or high impact wording to call the customers' attention" he said. In reality, the "evaporated cane juice" that is used in food products is a very processed form of sugar, unequivocally the same as refined white sugar.  The only difference is that it goes through one less processing step than white sugar, and has nearly zero nutrients in it.  For more info on natural sugars, you can read my previous article The Truth About Evaporated Cane Juice.

 

LOST 100 POUNDS AND FEEL GREAT

Recommend Dee's Plan Almost Daily! Willow_After_Final.PNG
 
I lost 48 pounds in about 4 months and 100 pounds within a year and a half.  Thank you, Dee!Read More

LOST THOSE EXTRA 30 POUNDS

Her Plan Made So Much Sense Kathy Kopack
 
As a certified personal trainer, I found it embarrassing that I could not lose those extra pounds of middle-age fat.

LOWERED BLOOD PRESSURE

Didn't Know What Feeling Good Was Ted Alber

Now I have more energy than I have had in years. I am 63 years old and still have the energy to work 16-18 hours per day.Read More

Online Shop

Online Shop
  • "Healthy Food, Healthy Planet."

    Marie-France H.,
    Palmetto, FL

  • "How dare our government allow the makers of our food supply to poison us."

    Catherine W.,
    Cumberland, WI

  • "Thank you for taking a real stand on health!"

    Whitney H.,
    Fort Worth, TX

  • "It is time the government stopped selling out "we the people" to businesses."

    Pamela I.,
    Cropwell, AL

  • "Keep up the good work."

    Geanine H.,
    Sacramento, CA

  • "I am so ready to sign this petition."

    Jean D.,
    Toms River, NJ

  • "Humanity's inalienable right to the natural, unadulterated foods given by the Creator is more important than the greed of food, drug and chemical corporations."

    Chavah A.,
    Taos, NM

  • "TOO MANY UNNATURAL SUBSTANCES = TOO MANY CANCERS!!...Unless a change is made to the laws, food manufacturers will continue to poison us with WHATEVER IT TAKES TO MAKE AS MUCH MONEY AS THEY CAN!! Time to stop the insanity."

    Karen G.,
    Henrietta, NY

  • "I find it a travesty that in what used to be one of the richest countries in the world we have such a poorly regulated food supply."

    Julie S.,
    Birch Run, MI

  • "Best of luck with this important petition!"

    Scott E.,
    Cheshire, CT

  • "Thanks for keeping us informed! We need a watch dog over our food supply!"

    Cindy M.,
    Raleigh, NC

  • "Every single person should take the time to prepare healthy, nutritious meals for their families every day! ... Drag those kids and your spouse into the kitchen and create together!!"

    Ellen F.H.,
    Colton, OR

  • "Obesity is an epidemic in this country. Let's mandate healthy eating and stop poisoning our citizens."

    Tim W.,
    Ventura, CA

  • "This processed food is the killer for all human beings."

    Hadassah E.,
    Florida City, FL

  • "Have been on the no preservatives diet for 3 months now and have lost 10 pounds! I feel great!"

    Sallie G.,
    Conway, SC

  • "I have a chronic illness so it is very important to me that our food does not have toxins in it."

    Susie H.,
    Monroe, WI

  • "I am just now learning (about) all the stuff that is being put in our food. I am so shocked."

    Verna W.,
    Las Vegas, NV

  • "The U.K. & other countries get it right because they care. It's a disgrace that the U.S. doesn't use safe ingredients."

    Janice E.,
    Glendale, AZ

  • "As someone who struggles with weight, I would like to be proactive, not only in my own life, but also in the lives of others, which is why I decided to be a part of this petition. Thank you for informing me."

    Tekoa S.,
    Fullerton, CA

  • "What a positive change it has made in my life!"

    Judy E.,
    Sun City, AZ

  • "Everyone has a right to clean, clear, un-adulterated foods. It is not a privilege but a RIGHT!!"

    Ramana and Neil K.,
    Plano, TX

  • "Awareness is the beginning of change...thank you for your diligence in keeping us informed!"

    Elizabeth D.,
    Ft Worth, TX

  • "Let us as individuals take charge of our own health by making our food supply safe."

    Deborah Y.,
    Phoenix, AZ

  • "Thank you for your devotion to this issue."

    Silvia S.,
    Riverside, CA

  • "I think the government has to start to have the health and welfare of the people at heart. Putting chemicals and dangerous preservatives in our food is not in anyone's best interest."

    Diane W.,
    West Lawn, PA

  • "It is criminal and outrageous what's being done to our food here in America....It is your job to protect us, and STOP this greed-driven abuse NOW! Take a stand for the health of your citizens and their families, or remove yourself from office.

    Douglas G.
    Goleta, CA

  • "Processed food has made me sick ... I feel better since I don't eat it anymore."

    Mary Ann B.,
    Oak View, CA

  • "We must take action to protect our health."

    Delores W.,
    Kansas City, MO

  • "Being a nutritionist with a PHD, it is my goal to assist as many individuals as possible to live a healthy lifestyle. As more and more issues with health arise, it is evident that the foods we are consuming has toxic effects on us."

    Brenda B.,
    Mesa, AZ

Videos

Processed-Free Support Groups!

Watch Video

Dee on The Doctors!

Watch Video

Dee on The Science of Skinny

Watch Video

Dee on Dr. Steve Show NYC PIX11

Watch Video

Science of Skinny Video Part 1: Dee's Story

Watch Video

6 Important Foods for Weight Loss

Watch Video

Dee on Better TV

Watch Video

Food Additives to Avoid

Watch Video

Slimming Mexican Cuisine

Watch Video

Dee on Austin NBC

Watch Video

A 2012 Intention

Watch Video

Colleen's Success Story

Watch Video

Another Success Story

Watch Video

Buying Organic On Budget

Watch Video

Sesame Tahini Logs

Watch Video

Dee's Favorite Breakfast

Watch Video

Make a Healthy Thanksgiving Feast

Watch Video

Sweet Halloween Treat

Watch Video

Healthy Eating for Kids

Watch Video

Food Label Reading

Watch Video

Healthy Treat for Kids

Watch Video

Healthy Greek Turkey Burgers

Watch Video

Healthy French Toast

Watch Video

Dee on CBS

Watch Video

Yummy Stir Fried Rice

Watch Video

Dee's First TV Appearance

Watch Video

Processed-Free Chocolate Treats

Watch Video

Dangers of High Fructose Corn Syrup

Watch Video

Dee on Plan-D

Watch Video

About Plan-D Online Course

Watch Video

JOIN DEE ON...

 facebook twitter youtube

 

Copyright © 2009-2014 Processed-Free America. All Rights Reserved.

Web Support by CEDC