In my book, Eating Clean & Juicing 2 Live, I discuss the short-term dietary strategy of juice fasting and its benefits for hydrating, detoxing, cleanse the body’s organs for optimum health, wellness and function. The idea is to gain a big nutritional boost from the concentrated fruits and vegetables while cutting the calories you usually consume.
The juices are tasty and filling, making your juice fast a different experience than most other diets. While there is some controversy over the benefits, there isn’t any physiological harm in trying it out. Many claim it has helped them immensely with weight loss and general health.
Equipment. You only need a juice extractor or a blender; some buy both. There are several types of juicers or blenders, each with advantages and disadvantages. Comparison shopping will help you decide which juicer is best for you.
When Blending, the best price is cutting your veggies and fruits smaller to get a better blend of the produce. The difference between juicing and blending is that you remove all fibrous materials, leaving only the liquid of the fruits and vegetables. With blending, you get it all — the pulp and fiber that bulks up the produce.
- Fruit and vegetables. Essentially, any fruit or vegetable is fair game (except for bananas and avocados, which can’t be juiced and should only be blended), depending on your quality and type of juicer. There are plenty of recipes online to get you started.
- Experiment with different juices, blends, and combinations of fluids to see which ones you like best. For example, if you wish to include a vegetable you know you’re not fond of, you can mix that with other juices to derive a tasty result.
- Shopping for fresh, organic fruits and vegetables from your local farmer’s market can help you enjoy the best nutrition and better prices.
Advantages of Juice Fasting
- Weight loss. You are bound to lose a fair amount of weight. This is especially true if you rely more on vegetables and less on fruit. If you’re watering down your juice, the calories on this diet can be pretty low.
- 3-4 pounds of fat loss per week is a reasonable expectation. The total weight loss can be much more significant, including water and glycogen loss, which is only temporary.
- Detoxification. Many practitioners believe that a juice fast rids the body of toxins more effectively than a conventional diet. Many medical experts dispute these claims, but the medical establishment has been wrong numerous times. Only the future will provide the answer.
- Increased energy and clarity. Juice fasters frequently report feelings of increased energy and clarity. Many believe this is due to the lower point spent on digestion.
- Lack of hunger. Most juice fasters report not being hungry despite a low-calorie intake. This fact may be one of the most attractive benefits since many “diets” leave you feeling hungry.
The most common schedule suggested to start with is vegetable juice (1/2 cup) immediately upon awakening and then alternating back and forth between fruit juice (1/2 cup) and vegetable juice (1/2 cup) throughout the day. The fluid can be diluted with as much water as you like, and you should get six total servings per day (3 each).
Juice fasting is highly regarded by many. So many people swear by the benefits that it would be a shame not to give yourself the experience; maybe you’ll be one of its biggest proponents someday