Centrifugal juicers are a fast way to get nutrients into your body and they are great if you have a busy lifestyle and your main priority is to get the job done quickly. Heat can destroy nutrients and the false claim most commonly made against centrifugal juicers is that they heat up juice and destroy nutrients. Their speed doesn’t create significant warming and there is good evidence that they produce highly nutritious juice with good enzyme activity.
One thing that centrifugal models don’t do quite as well as masticating juicers (all slow juicers are also masticating juicers) is achieving a more efficient breakdown of the plant fibres. In a masticating juicer the fibres and cells are chewed and ground together, which is believed to help in releasing more of the ‘sticky’ nutrients in the plant cells and membranes. In a centrifugal juicer the cell walls are broken open very quickly and the liquid content is released by the centrifugal force of a fast spinning filter basket. There is very little time or opportunity for the cells to be broken down completely, so the juice is visibly a bit less rich and colorful from a centrifugal. Centrifugal also incorporate air, so the juice will discolors more quickly due to oxidation. That’s not a problem if you are drinking your juice when you make it, but slow juicers do give a longer shelf life.
It’s clear that any centrifugal juicer is the best juicer under $100 that will give a highly nutritious juice. Claims made online often wildly exaggerate the difference in quality between a centrifugal and a masticating juicer but the limited research available doesn’t support such claims. There is a difference, but depending on the nutrient tested, the percentages of difference can drop into low single figures. Juice yield from a centrifugal juicer is comparable with masticating juicers on most hard ingredients, but they do give significantly less juice with leafy greens, wheatgrass and soft juicy fruits. Nevertheless, a centrifugal juicer with a large feed chute and a powerful motor will be very easy to live with compared to some masticating juicers, and the speed and convenience can be a good pay off compared to a small loss of juice quality. The more you actually use your juicer – the more you will benefit.