What's the big deal with juice these days? It seems juice has evolved from being a staple in your kindergarten lunchbox to the latest trendy, and expensive, health fad. But is there some truth in the health claims for juicing? And, if so, is this something you should be doing?
Juicing or juice detox. is where you replace some or all of your meals and snacks with a juice blend of fruits and vegetables for a period of time, usually lasting between three to five days. This process is thought to rid the body of toxins that can cause fatigue, headache, brain fog and countless health conditions. Unfortunately, there isn't much research to support this theory. Some proponents of juicing say your body is able to absorb more nutrients from the juice than the whole food. Again, no evidence supports juicing is healthier than eating the whole fruit or vegetable itself.
What Are Toxins?
What are these toxins that we are trying to rid our body of? It seems that "toxin" is more of a buzzword than anything that can be medically defined. If our bodies were overwhelmed by toxins, we actually already posses a highly efficient system for filtering them out: our liver, kidneys and colon. The best way to detox the body is to support these systems with a healthy diet and exercise.
Think about what your diet may be missing if you go on a three- to five-day cleanse and whether or not this is beneficial for your physical activity plan. An all-juice diet can be very low in calories and protein. Following a dietary pattern like this for more than a few days can lead to significant loss in muscle mass.
Is the Weight Loss Good for You?
While many may be excited to see weight loss, it unfortunately comes mainly in the form of water loss, followed by minimal fat loss and some muscle loss. After the first day your body will have used up its glycogen stores in the muscle. Remember that glycogen holds a lot of water with it. Therefore, as your body is using up the glycogen, it is also losing that water and the weight it carries with it. Furthermore, glycogen is extremely important for endurance exercise. You may find that without it, you are not able to work out nearly as hard or as long as you could before. This is not beneficial for weight loss or performance.