It’s not just celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow, Blake Lively, and Salma Hayek that love and talk about juicing and juice fasts. It seems like everyone and their mother has tried a juice cleanse these days. Juice bars are everywhere here in Los Angeles, and you can find pre-made juices in grocery stores and coffee shops around the country. Beverage Industry magazine predicts that the juice and smoothie trend will grow four percent this year alone.
What Is A Juice Cleanse?
A cleanse, or juice detox, is a liquid raw juice diet that you follow for a short time. Juice cleanses usually last 1-6 days. You can either buy packaged bottled juice cleanses, make the juices yourself, or do a combination of the two.
Why Would You Do It?
If you’re considering a juice cleanse, your goals can be to detox, get a jump start on weight loss, or to push the reset button on unhealthy eating and lifestyle habits. Some people start juice cleanses diets to give a boost to their metabolism, lose a lot of weight quickly, or to remove toxins from their body after a particularly unhealthy period of drinking and partying.
Since most cleanses are very low-calorie, you will probably lose weight. Some nutritionists also like the fact that it can help some people start anew and “reset” their taste buds so they’re not always craving caffeine, alcohol, or salty, sweet, fatty, and unhealthy foods.
Why Wouldn’t You Do It?
Commercial juice plans can be expensive – from $40 – $100 a day.
There is little scientific research out there that supports the claims of many of the juice companies. Most medical professionals agree that food and supplement companies throw the word “detox” around with no real authority, since our bodies detox everyday on their own.
According to Dr. Deepa Verma, a medical doctor and holistic health expert, you might be disappointed by your juice fast if your only goal is weight loss:
I do not believe juicing should be exclusively done for weight loss and detoxification… of course, you can jump-start weight loss if the only thing you are consuming is juice, but it comes at a cost: our bodies cannot be sustained on just fruits and vegetables for long periods of time. We need fat, protein, and an adequate caloric intake to survive. On a juice cleanse diet, only water weight is shed as glycemic stores are broken down in the body; once you start eating again, the weight comes back on.
Want To Try It? A Short List of Some of The Best Juice Cleanse Companies:
Paleta– farm-to-table cold pressed juices with a good variety of different lines and offerings.
BluePrint– fresh fruit and vegetable cleanse with different levels of intensity.
Cooler Cleanse– Salma Hayek is one of the founder’s of this line, which has 1, 3, and 5 day programs.
Suja – this non-GMO, organic juice company has a line called Elements that partners with important social or environmental causes.
Organic Avenue– this larger product line has cleanses, booster shots, liquid vitamins, food, snacks, and beauty products.
How to Prepare for a Juice Fast
According to Cathy Wong, a naturopathic doctor and Alternative Medicine expert for About.com, the best way to prepare for a detox or juice fast is to give your diet a mini-makeover. She recommends that you decrease caffeine and alcohol intake for three days before you begin your detox diet and increase the amount of raw food and vegetables you eat.