Many overindulgers want to know if juicing will work for a post-festive season detox.
Dieting fads come and go, but the juice diet is showing no signs of slowing down. Many call it the best thing since sliced avocado, while others find it to be a dangerous craze that will fade.
And, understandably, the rest of us who are trying to figure it all out and are pretending to be health-conscious people are left wondering what to believe.
So, if you’re planning a juice diet as part of your detox, we’ve got the latest on juice and juicing.
WHAT’S A JUICE CLEANSE?
You’ve probably come across celebrities or health experts talking about juice diets or juice cleansing. This basically involves following a strict diet that consists solely of fresh vegetable juices, fruit juices and water for a set period of time.
This cleanse focuses on fresh, unpasteurised juices, which means you either have to get specialist products instead of the usual juice from the grocery shop, or you need to make your own juice with a juicing blender.
#Trending would suggest you make your own because it is much more cost-effective, and means you can play around with recipes so that you find something that is exactly to your taste and that fulfils your dietary needs.
IS JUICING HEALTHY?
Juicing doesn’t instantly make you healthier, but it’s an easy way to get your daily recommended dose of vitamins and nutrients as few of us have the time to prepare a meal made up exclusively of fresh vegetables and healthy foods.
Blending fruit into juice releases sugars from the fruit, which can cause damage to your teeth. Even unsweetened fruit juice is sugary, so try not to drink more than one glass (approximately 150ml) of fruit juice a day.
Drinking several portions of home-made juice a day can also be risky because ingesting too many of the dangerous pathogens that live on raw food is not ideal.
Off-the-shelf juices go through a pasteurisation process that kills these pathogens, so you should make sure that you thoroughly wash all of your ingredients before blending the fruit and vegetables together.
CAN JUICING HELP ME DETOX?
Juice cleanse websites often say that a juice-based fast will make you feel more energised, and will reduce the risk of illness and disease. While fruit and vegetables are essential parts of a balanced diet, overdoing it and substituting juice for other staple elements of a healthy diet can be dangerous.
However, antioxidants in raw fruit and vegetables definitely have restorative qualities. Vitamins A, C and E fight diseases and help to break down soluble fats. If you’re prone to winter colds, vitamin C will help boost your immune system.
Additionally, recent research shows that vitamin E helps to reduce the number of brain cells that are killed during a binge-drinking session.
As with most things, if something sounds too good to be true, it generally is.
Juicing is a great way to add fresh, nutritious foods to your diet. But, as a quick-fix after weeks of indulgence, overeating and inactivity over the festive season, it should be noted that it could do more harm than good, especially if you’re not supplementing your juice cleanse with essential proteins. Speak to a dietician to find out what’s best for you.