IF you have been overindulging in fast food, binge eating sugary sweets, and downing sugar-and caffeine-packed beverages and want to shift and go back to making healthier food choices, you could start by resetting your metabolism with the gift of a juice cleanse.
“A juice cleanse is a liquid diet which involves consuming juices extracted from fruits and vegetables for a short period, usually just a few days. This is usually done to achieve weight loss and body detox,” nutritionist and wellness coach Donovan Grant said.
He told All Woman that a juice diet has always been used to support the body's natural detox processes. The extracted juices, Grant explains, clear the diet of artificial sugars, caffeine, refined foods and junk foods.
“Other benefits of a juice cleanse include that the digestive system also gets a rest, because you are not eating whole foods and so you do not have to slave to digest fibres. It also boosts the immune system and aids digestion,” Grant outlined.
As with other diets, the juice cleanse is not for everyone and may have some downsides. One of the most recent findings noted by Grant is the risk of kidney damage.
“If you are pregnant, nursing or if you have diabetes or chronic liver, kidney or gall bladder problems, you should not partake in a juice cleanse. Partaking in the juice cleanse for prolonged periods, with the excessive amounts of organic acids found in fruits and vegetables, can affect the kidneys. It can also significantly lower sugar levels and cause loose stool, and you may end up packing on more calories than you expected to,” Grant said.
During a juice cleanse it is recommended that you drink juice or smoothies every two to three hours during the day. Some of the most common fruits and vegetables that are used in juice cleanses include kale, spinach, lemon, beets, oranges, apples, limes, parsley, fresh ginger, turmeric, cucumber and carrots.
Even though with a juice cleanse food is not generally permitted, there are instances when exceptions are made if the participant feels starved to the point of feeling unwell or uncomfortable.
“Participants in the juice cleanse who feel hungry may eat a handful of nuts or a serving of fruits or vegetables. In-between juices it is recommended that you have plenty of water, which will also ward off feelings of hunger until your next smoothie,” Grant advised.