Juice cleansing is a wonderful way of getting some much-needed vitamins into your body, detoxing from most common allergens and giving your gut a rest.

Many people that go on a juice cleanse, report feeling wonderful; lighter, better skin, more energy. But the big question is, do you really need to do a juice cleanse in order to get the same effect? And is juice cleansing the way to go if weight loss is a goal?

So why do people want to do a juice cleanse in the first place? The hope for most is to lose weight and detox. If you’ve been eating excessively, eating low-quality foods, little vegetables, foods that you’re sensitive and allergic to, and drinking too much, then certainly a juice cleanse will make you feel amazing.

Think about it, you just rid your body of the heavy burden of having to deal with inflammatory foods, such as gluten, dairy, soy, corn, and vegetable oils. Your gut is getting a much-needed rest from trying to break down foods faster than it can handle. It no longer has to deal with the toxic burden of chemicals found in conventional meat and produce and alcohol. And the added bonus is, now you are actually getting some vitamins and minerals into your body.

But what if a detox from sugar is your goal? Sugar is all around us and even if you don’t consider yourself a heavy sugar eater, you are likely having a lot more than you think. So can juice cleansing help us with the goal to stop cravings, and re-adjust our taste buds to not crave intense sweetness anymore. The answer is likely not.

Juice, even the wonderful cold pressed variety is sugar. Yes, it contains vitamins and minerals, but it is lacking all the fiber from the original fruit or vegetable, so that it can get into our cells quickly, taking the digestive process out completely. So can we expect a juice cleanse to get rid of our sugar cravings? Likely not, unless you plan on only drinking no sugar veggies, such as celery, cucumbers, and greens, but reality is, this is not the case.

How about weight loss? Well with all low-calorie diets, weight loss is usually a result. Especially one that allows your body to rid itself of inflammation, like during a juice cleanse.  But does this weight loss stick and will it continue, or will you begin to plateau and stay at a stand still? After some time on a low-calorie diet, your body suddenly realizes this may be a long-term thing and it begins to hold on to fat, in fear of starvation. So will a juice cleanse help you get slimmer, maybe, but if you have a considerable amount you want to lose, you will likely be disappointed.

The majority of people who go on a juice cleanse have no idea what to do after the juice cleanse, so they inevitably go back to eating the same way they did before they started the cleanse. Not only that but often the cleanse is extended for too many days and the person ends up depleted of proteins, fats, and finds themselves with an uncontrollable urge to eat everything around them.

So can you get the same elated feeling that is possible from a juice cleanse without a juice cleanse? In my opinion, you can. In fact, through changing the way you eat, the impact on your body can be even better and actually stick!

I certainly believe that cold pressed juice has amazing healing abilities, and it definitely has a place in all of our lives as part of an already healthy diet. But change the way you eat and you will see a tremendous difference in your energy levels, skin, digestive health, and overall well-being.

These are my top three places to begin:

1) Do an elimination diet! Rid your body of gluten, dairy, and soy for 6 weeks and see how amazing you feel when you rid yourself of these inflammatory foods.

2) Include healthy fats, proteins, and fiber, in each meal and snack. This will keep your blood sugar stable and keep you satiated. Vegetables provide an amazing source of fiber, without the bulk and sugars from grains in your diet.

3) Start investing a bit more on higher quality foods. They are more expensive, but they are an investment towards better health and worth every penny when you consider that you will experience illness less often and you will be more productive at work.

Use the handy EWG chart to determine which fruits and veggies have the lowest score on the pesticide scale and buy the other ones organic: DIRTY DOZEN

Buy grass fed, or hormone free meats, they are not only tastier, but you will be promoting and supporting the better care of animals and ensure they live a healthy life, not one of captivity and torture.

Listen to your own body and what works best for you to get closer to your health goals. Perhaps a juice cleanse has a place in your life right now, but know that it’s not the only option to get healthier and detox this year!

 

In health and fitness,
Daniela