What is a Juice Cleanse?
A juice cleanse is a program where you consume only juiced vegetables and fruit for a period of time. The length of your juice cleanse and the guidelines vary depending on the person, and on the program you’re following. Some programs advocate for a two-day cleanse, while others promote a seven-day cleanse.
However, you don’t need to follow a specific program or buy a product. While it can take some time and effort, you can create your own juice cleanse and juice your own veggies and fruits in the comfort of your own home.
Potential Benefits of a Juice Cleanse
There are a lot of claims about the benefits of a juice cleanse. There are some valid benefits, but be wary of claims that sound too good to be true or sound “sales-y.” Here’s five real benefits of a juice cleanse.
1. Supports the immune system via fasting
When you consume only juice, you’re likely in a fasted state. Fasting has a host of benefits, but one of the most notable ones is immune system rejuvenation. In a fasted state, your body begins to deplete glycogen stores. The biochemical processes involved in using stored glycogen promote healing throughout the body. In addition, fasting could signal the body to rid itself of damaged cells and produce new ones.
2. Promotes a healthy gut microbiome
If you’ve paid attention to the wellness space over the past couple of years, you’ve likely heard how important it is to have a diverse microbiome and overall healthy gut. One study showed that a three-day vegetable and fruit juice-based diet led to significant improvements in the gut microbiome, due to the fermentable fiber found in juices.
3. Supports detoxification
A juice cleanse can support your detox pathways twofold: by fasting and by providing antioxidants and nutrients. When you fast by consuming only juice and no solid food matter, you are allowing your digestive system to take a break. Your body can then focus its attention on removing stored toxins instead of metabolizing food. Fruit and vegetable juices are also rich sources of antioxidants, which help fight free radical damage in your body.
4. Provides the body with easily-absorbed nutrients
Juicing eliminates most of the fiber from fruits and vegetables, which allows for quicker absorption of nutrients. Many people also find that they can consume more fruits and veggies in juice form!
5. Weight loss
The potential for easy and fast weight loss is a common sales point for juice cleanses. A juice cleanse won’t make you drop twenty pounds in one week (not that you’d want to anyway!) but many report weight loss as a benefit of juice cleansing.