Happy Sunday, loves! Today I thought I would write to you about cleanses and finding the type that works best for your particular goals and your individual body. I get a whole lot of questions and emails about the health benefits of juice cleansing versus solid food detoxes, water fasting, extended juice cleanses, eating clean, etc.
I am a fan of one to three day juice cleanses when they are done for the right reasons. The most common misconception about juice cleansing is that it’s a sustainable way to lose weight, and that is simply not the case. A juice cleanse should be done to give your body a clean slate, give your digestive system a rest for a few days, and to become more in tune with your body so that you can properly listen to the signals its giving you.
A juice cleanse should not be done as a quick fix, a way to lose weight or as a method of instilling self-control. The real self-control comes in when solid foods are reintroduced. Do you know how many people juice cleanse (miserably) for three days, obsess about finishing, pass the finish line and then gorge themselves on food (healthy or unhealthy food, gorging is never good) and all of the benefits are canceled out?
It makes me sad that there is so much confusion around juice cleansing. Many people dive into cleanses for the wrong reasons (and/or think that they are the #1 source of knowledge on health and fitness because they’ve had a few green juices), and others criticize and dislike cleanses for equally inaccurate reasons. If a juice cleanse is done in a mindful way, it can be a great tool to get back in tune with your body, get your digestion on track and to fuel your body with the nutrients of veggies and fruits.
Here are a few tips I have for determining which type of cleanse is right for you:
Where To Begin?!
A) If you’re looking to make a lifestyle change and transition into a healthier and/or vegan diet, I would suggest doing a cleanse that involves solid food. I sell a 5-day plant-based cleanse program on my site that includes 1 smoothie, 2 juices, and 2 solid food recipes per day. This type of cleanse is sustainable and it teaches you how to eat and prepare healthy, balanced meals. A lifestyle change is necessary if you are looking for a healthy and maintainable way to lose weight, eat healthier and feel better in a long term way.
B) If you already eat a very clean diet and you want to amp it up for a few days to get your digestion flowing or lose some bloat and water weight, a juice cleanse is the way to go. Sometimes one day can do the trick if you are looking for a little recharge, but usually three days is the perfect amount of time to see and feel a real change. By the end of the three day period, you will be able to better listen to your body, fuel it well and give it what it needs.
C) If you are feeling extremely out of balance and you aren’t sure whether a juice cleanse, a solid food cleanse or a gradual lifestyle change is the way to go, I would suggest beginning with a very clean diet regime (such as a solid food cleanse) from anywhere from one week to one month, and then following it up with a three-day juice cleanse once your body is adjusting to eating healthier foods. At the end of that period, you can reevaluate how you feel and decide which foods you want to reintroduce into your diet. The elimination of red meat, poultry, refined sugar, dairy products and wheat products is the best place to start.
When I’m feeling out of balance and I need a health boost I usually choose to do a one-day juice cleanse followed by a week or so of eating 100% clean. Since I already eat a very clean diet, this just amps it up for me and wipes my slate clean from anything I may have overindulged in (raw chocolate? Chocolatey steel cut oats? Raw vegan peanut butter cups? Yes, yes and yes.)
The juice I went with this week was a local NYC brand, Jus By Julie. Not only do their juices taste delicious, but they use raw and pure ingredients blended fresh daily to achieve the utmost health and deliciousness. Jus By Julie uses a “blended and not pressed” method so that all of the nutrients stay in tact in the juicing process – meaning that all of the natural vitamins, minerals, enzymes and antioxidants are flowing through your bod throughout the day.
Jus By Julie is based in Brooklyn, but they ship all over the US. If you’re looking for a yummy and sustainable company that combines greens with delicious fruity juices like “Chia Berry” and “Not So Chunky” peanut butter and banana combo, you should definitely pop over to their website.
My favorite juice by far was the “Choco-Nana” (you know I’m a chocoholic…) which is a combo of chocolate, banana and water. It seriously tasted like chocolate milk. I could hardly even handle it.
And, Jus by Julie has been kind enough to provide $40 off any order with a $100 minimum for all of YOU! The code is: VEGAN40JUS. Heck yeah, got my own vegan code because I love y’all so much 😉
I was planning on doing a one-day juice cleanse today, but in the spirit of my #fallinlovewithyourself #tbvchallenge (read a few posts below for details!) I decided to totally listen to my body and spread the juices out over a three day period instead. I am eating somewhat of an 80/10/10 lifestyle right now, so the juices were the perfect in between-meal snacks for me this weekend.
Question of the day: What kind of cleanse do you most enjoy? Are you a juice-happy kinda cleanser, or do you need solid food to function best?