Many of my clients come into my office excited to tell me about the juice cleanse they are about to embark upon. And I tell them, “Don’t!”
Yes, there are some advantageous reasons for conducting a juice cleanse. Juice cleanses can provide your pancreas a much needed break from breaking down food. That is where the list stops. This might be the only beneficial result. For most, juice cleanses are not going to be the answer to health for which they are searching.
1. Most juice cleanses contain large amounts of fruit juice and no fiber from the fruit.
In this NYDailyNews article, many juice cleansers admit feeling sluggish due to the high sugar content. The problem with this is that fruit juice can be likened to sugar water. Without fiber, fructose will spike blood glucose levels, in addition to feeding pathogenic gut bacteria, yeast and parasites. With a fast spike in glucose and no fiber, our energy will rise quickly and crash quickly, leaving us more tired than before.
2. Cleansing or detoxing the body takes time, often one or more years.
One week of juice cleansing is not going to remove much in the way of toxins that are deleterious to our health including pesticides, heavy metals, dioxins, and other chemicals. Detoxification is an ongoing process due to the fact that our bodies store chemicals in our fat, gut, organs, brain and every other part of the body.
If our detoxification organs (liver and kidneys) are not supported, we may loosen some toxins, however, they may not be able to exit the body and instead recirculate causing more problems. Mark Hyman, MD shares more details about the intricacies of heavy metal detoxification process here.
3. What are we really trying to accomplish?
If our goal is weight loss, we may lose some water weight in the short term, although, we may not actually lose fat. If our goal is to really detoxify our body from harmful toxins a juice cleanse will not cut it.
Detoxification requires time, supplements that support our detox organs, minerals, addressing dental health and amalgams, parasites, yeast and gut health, supporting lymphatic drainage and toxin binders. Real detoxification is serious business and a serious commitment to ourselves, our health and long term optimal vitality.
Life long weight loss is a way of life commitment, not a one week change. We all want a quick fix, however, no matter our desired goals, what our bodies wants is permanent commitment to change.
4. Most people go right back to their regular diet post cleanse.
Returning to a diet that lead us to needing to do a juice cleanse will bring us right back to where we started. My clients who are eating fast food or frozen meals heated in a microwave are not going to find much benefit with one week of organic juices only to be immediately followed by continuing to feed themselves frankenfood. If we do not change our ways long term, we cannot expect different results.
5. Lifestyle choices, in addition to food, contribute to the body’s accumulation of toxins.
If we change our food and nothing else, we are still putting hundreds of chemicals in your body—topically and through your lungs. Everything we put on your body, goes in our body. That includes creams, shampoos, toothpaste, hairspray, nail polish, cleaning products, makeup, deodorant, hair products, perfume and all other products.
I hear my clients wanting to do a juice cleanse because they think it will clean out their bodies. According to the Environmental Working Group, “Personal care products are manufactured with 10,500 unique chemical ingredients, some of which are known or suspected carcinogens, toxic to the reproductive system or known to disrupt the endocrine system. Though some companies make products that are safe to eat, others choose to use dangerous ingredients like coal tar and formaldehyde, both human carcinogens, and lead acetate, a developmental toxin.”
If we continue to fill the bathtub with dirty water, no matter how much clean filtered water we put in, the water will never be truly clean. Our first step is to drain the dirty water, secondly, fill it with clean water.
It is imperative that we clean out all areas of our lives in order to truly cleanse our body. Detoxification is a way of life, it is ongoing and needs to be part of our wellness and health choices on a daily basis.
Author: Morgan Mellas
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Hannah Webb/Flickr