Day 1 of my first ever juice cleanse, these were my thoughts…
“I’m feeling so irritable, my stomach hurts, why did I even bother with this?”
“There’s no way I’ll get through this, I’m probably not strong enough to do this!”
“I wish I could just have one chocolate bar… oh how I miss sugar!”
As all this chaos and negativity were going on in my mind I couldn’t help but feel the whole juice cleanse fad was just not worth all the hype.
Thankfully, I managed to push on through this heavy cloud of dreary thoughts and hangry emotions and I found the answer.
Yes, a juice cleanse is completely worth the hunger and pain you experience initially. If you push on through you’ll end up feeling better than ever before and here are four surprising reasons why I will never stop juicing.
The first health benefit that comes with doing a juice cleanse is your energy levels. Juicing takes my energy to new levels and here’s how.
When you drink the fruit and vegetable juices you are only consuming around 900-1000 calories a day. Whilst this may be less than half the calories of what you’re typically eating day to day it gives your body a break. The detox from solid food usually makes me feel a bit tired and irritable on day one. If I manage to push through to the three-day mark it’s like I cross some threshold. My body feels light, airy, and buzzing with energy.
Whether it’s the detoxification process or just the fruit juice giving my digestive system a time out I’m not sure. Certainly, my body thanks me on many levels for cutting out junk food, carbs, and fatty ingredients.
I find juice cleansing gives me a great boost in energy and I always notice a lovely little weight loss goes alongside this.
I really have a lot to be grateful for where it comes to cleansing. Although this is a lot of personal information I feel it really helped confirm my choices when it comes to juicing.
A few years ago I was suffering horribly with IBS. I used to bloat after every meal and it was so uncomfortable and made me feel very unattractive. I found everything from junk food to veggies set off my symptoms and I often felt weak and nauseous.
After trialing various detox diets and other healthy eating regimes I was getting nowhere. My general well-being was suffering immensely and the side effects of food were just getting worse.
A dear friend (who is also a dietitian) suggested I try a juice fast. She explained all the ins and out and how it was important to eat whole foods from healthy food groups for a week leading up to the three day cleanse.
I had a doctor’s check-up beforehand to ensure I was healthy enough to undergo the juicing process.
After 3 days I felt better than I had in a long time. As I started to move back onto the healthy diet I found my issues re-surged whenever I added in bread, pasta, or other carb-rich foods. My friend advised I try going gluten-free and it has changed my life. My symptoms have all but subsided and my overall health is better than it’s ever been.
At the end of the day, my eating habits have changed for the better thanks to juicing and I now lead a much more healthy lifestyle.
I can say I haven’t been the only one to gain a little extra padding during the Covid-19 lockdown. After a bit too much lazing around and eating too much, my nutrition hasn’t been as good as it used to. I was worried about my immune system with the virus out there so decided to dust off the juicer.
The juicing process is a quick and easy way to pack in loads of vitamins and minerals. The juices themselves have loads of goodness but I like to add in nutrient shots as well. Turmeric and ginger is a great immune booster and targets inflammation. I also like to use cayenne as well to aid digestion.
Fruits like avocado and coconut can add lots of healthy fats to your diet alongside fiber to help your digestive tract function optimally.
Whatever your body needs it will take from a cleanse and this will get it started on a detoxing process that will allow a much more healthy way of being.
4. Curb Cravings
The final, amazing side effect that I find I get with juicing is the process of letting go of cravings. If I’ve had a spell of eating a little too much sweet or salty foods that really get my mouthwatering I find that trying to cut these things out becomes such a chore.
Every time I get bored my mind immediately starts to wander over all the potential snacks I could be indulging in. No matter how hard I try I can’t seem to break away from these cravings.
That was before I got into cleansing.
Alongside a boost in nutrition, weight loss, and overall better health a happy result I discovered with cleansing is that I seemed to lose all junk food cravings.
Supposedly this is all part of the detoxification process. I’m no expert but I can say it helps me immensely.
There’s a right and a wrong way to do cleansing and if you choose the wrong way it can be quite dangerous. I would always recommend checking with a doctor before undertaking any extreme diet change.
Here are some tips to help keep juicing a safe and beneficial pursuit.
It is so important to prepare your body for the changes it is about to undertake. It’s not a good idea to suddenly shock your system. It is important to spend a few days to a week or so of eliminating negative foods and drinks. If your diet is especially high in processed foods, alcohol, caffeine, and added sugars then you’ll need longer for this process to work.
It’s so so important to stay really well hydrated when on a juice cleanse. You normally gain a lot of water from the meals you eat so don’t neglect this when cleansing. Make sure you drink at least 2 – 4 liters of water each day or even more if you exercise or live in a warm climate.
It’s a really bad idea to jump back into your old eating habits straight after a cleanse. Your body needs time to adjust and in order to benefit from weight loss, you’ll need to keep up a healthy diet of whole foods. To break the fast start with a small, light meal like a salad or soup and slowly work up from there. If you ignore this step you can end up losing all those key benefits from doing the cleanse.
Don’t Ignore Underlying Health Conditions
It’s so important to check with your doctor first whether or not cleaning is a good idea for you. One example of where a juice cleanse may be dangerous is those who suffer from kidney issues. Green juices with ingredients like kale are high in oxalate. This can build up over time into kidney stones which can be very dangerous.
Another issue with cleansing is the effect it can have on your blood sugar levels. The juices are high in natural fruit sugars so can lead to dangerous blood sugar spikes and drops if you suffer from diabetes. Again, please don’t risk it and if you suffer from any medical condition, please check with a physician first.
Above all, the most important thing to do on a juice cleanse is to be kind to yourself. If you find the hunger too extreme have a light snack. Some whole fruit or nuts won’t undo all the hard work. If you really can’t manage three days then celebrate that you managed two.
Even just attempting a cleanse is an admirable pursuit. If it’s all getting too much take a break from social media, go for a walk, and enjoy a healthy balanced meal. Don’t let feelings of failure creep on. The healthy way is a lifestyle choice, not a fad and you can’t mess it up unless you give up completely on wanting to better yourself.
Good luck, you’ve got this!