What is a juice cleanse or “juicing?” Most juice cleanses entail you consuming juice and juice only for all or most meals, typically lasting anywhere from 3 to 7 days. Many may think of this as a juice fast or going a period of time without solid, intact whole foods while most of your calories come from fruits and vegetables. Basically, fruits and vegetables are processed through a juicing machine and the pulp, fiber, seeds, pits, etc. are left behind while you drink the vitamins, minerals and water coming from the juice. If using a blender, the fiber and skins of the fruits/vegetables are most likely still consumed. The health claims usually include the following: weight loss, “detox”, reducing risk of cancer, boost your immune system, and reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Just like any other fad diet or super miracle product, if it sounds too good to be true, it is most likely too good to be true. A few things to keep in mind in regards to juicing:
- Our liver, kidneys and colon ALREADY do a great job at naturally detoxing our bodies. Nutrient dense foods such as fruits and vegetables definitely help out your body’s cells, but our liver and kidneys do a great job at filtering our blood and detoxifying any unwanted species.
- The health claims behind juicing are too good to be true. There is very little to no scientific evidence that supports the consistent practice of juicing. Even the American Cancer Society reports “there is no convincing evidence that extracted juices are healthier than whole foods.” Check out this brief article.
- How you may really feel if you practice a juice cleanse for 3-7 days:
- After your 3rd to 4th juice… you hate drinking juice and juice only.
- You will have to use the restroom every 20 minutes due to abnormal amounts of fluid intake (slight exaggeration).
- Dizzy and irritable. Potentially very low in calories and not enough protein—hello fatigue and …..
- HANGRY—what I like to call a combination of physical hunger and anger. We’ve probably all been there at some point.
- You never thought you would miss the act of chewing food, but you realize the act of chewing a banana sounds fantastic.
I love this scene from the movie, Mean Girls, where Regina George is encouraged to try Kalteen bars to lose weight. However, she later realizes they are the culprit to her weight gain. This is my way of encouraging you to be skeptical of certain fads, super foods, or miracle 3-7 day “detox” plans.