25 Nov 7 Diets In 7 Weeks – The Juice Cleanse
Week 5 : The Juice Cleanse
It’s hard to turn on your TV these days without seeing an infomercial on the latest blender or juicer that can extract all the nutrients from our fruits and vegetables in seconds and make us healthier than ever before.
With numerous celebrities also spruiking their version of a juice cleanse, promising to eliminate toxins and free radicals from our bodies, melt excess kilos, reset our digestive systems and have us glowing from head to toe in a matter of days, it’s little wonder that the juice cleanse market is enjoying an explosion in popularity.
If you’re interested in learning more about the juice cleanse phenomenon I recommend checking out a fascinating documentary called Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. It follows the story of high-powered executive Joe Cross who takes the very drastic step of going on 60-day (!) juice cleanse in an attempt to reverse some of the damage he’d inflicted on his body through an unhealthy lifestyle.
While there are a number of home delivered juice cleanse programs currently available in Australia, I decided to follow the recipes included with my NutriBullet (thanks, infomercials!). I committed to seven days of consuming nothing but juiced fruits and veggies, water and one nut and milk smoothie each day to provide me with some essential protein.
Pros and Cons
Most of us are aware by now of the many benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables and I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that the nutrients, vitamins and minerals found in fresh fruit and veg can have a range of positive effects including increased energy levels, improved liver, heart, stomach and bowel function, clearer skin, better brain function and a lowered risk of heart disease and cancer.
What you may not know is that going without solid food for a week will turn you into a moody, irritable, hungry, tired pain in the a**e, if only temporarily! The first few days were extremely difficult. I felt grumpy, tired and deprived and was generally an unpleasant person to be around. If you can push through these first few days you may begin to feel and see the benefits of a cleanse and many people report a surge of energy and mental clarity around day four, but take it from me those first days are tough! An almost total lack of grain carbohydrates and protein mean you’ll probably find it extremely difficult to concentrate, and any exercise that requires high energy levels or active muscle recovery are pretty much out of the question.
Unless you are told by your doctor to complete a cleanse or detox like this, I would never recommend it. I feel the NutriBullet take on the juice cleanse is the pick of the bunch, but this is not a diet for the faint of heart, nor is it a diet for anyone who is highly active as it will never fulfill your daily nutrition requirements. There’s also a very real risk that liquefying all of your food means your body won’t have time to absorb the nutrients you’re giving it before they pass through your system.
If you’re keen to increase your intake of fruit and vegetables or you want to reset your digestive system before adopting a healthier long-term approach to your diet then by all means, give this a go. I do however strongly recommend you consult your doctor before committing to a juice cleanse and maybe warn the people close to you that they might be in for a rough week!