There are many questions that come with starting a juice cleanse. For those that are curious about the details of a juice fast, I have listed 5 things that immediately come to mind when doing a cleanse.
1. Have a good, quality juicer.
I am fond of the Breville Juice Fountain Plus . It has lasted for over 3 years and has survived my less than gentle handling. I know it can be a bit pricey but it is durable. I had purchased a cheaper one, can’t remember what brand, and the motor blew in a few months. My juicer still gets alot of action, especially during the summer months when the weather warms and there are more fresh fruits and vegetables to be had. Don’t skimp on this tool, it is worth it in the long run.
2. Have a good source of organic fruits and vegetables
Needless to say, if you are contemplating a cleanse then health is important to you. Use only organic fruits, vegetables, and especially leafy greens. I know, pricey again. I have to be honest here. When juicing for my kids I go organic. If I’m the only one drinking it then I throw in whatever is around the kitchen, even if not organic. Here is a good article that will help relieve any guilt you might feel about using conventionally grown produce. Always keep plenty of produce around during a juice fast. Keep a variety too. There is no counting calories at this time so you may find yourself consuming quite a bit of juice to stave off the hunger. Also, yield can really vary on each piece of produce. A huge bunch of spinach or kale shrinks down to a small volume of raw juice.
3. Your bowels WILL loosen
Not the most fun stage of the cleanse but it happens. I’m telling you what I know from personal experience. Individual results will vary. Everything is fine for those first 1-3 days. You may notice more or less in your usual volume of waste. It will all generally become softer and then things will eventually let loose! It is best to try to schedule days 3-5 of a juice fast on a weekend so that you are in the comfort of your own home when nature calls. Once past this stage, bowel movements will become few and far between.
“Because pure juice contains little to no fiber, juice fasters may use enemas or herbal or saltwater laxatives during the time of fasting to efficiently expel waste from the intestines and colon. Another method to achieve this effect involves mixing psyllium husks in with the juice. Because psyllium is not absorbed by the body, but greatly increases in volume upon water absorption, it creates the bulk necessary to facilitate evacuation.”- Wikipedia
The stages of a juice fast are as long(or as short) as you make them. You will definitely feel extreme hunger at some point. You will feel light-headed and/or nauseous. You will be irritable and low on energy. You should probably avoid any rigorous exercise during your juice fast. I cannot over emphasize the importance of staying hydrated during the fast. Do not limit your intake of juice. Drink as much as you need to in order to keep the hunger pangs tolerable. This is not a time to count calories or limit volume.
5. Weight Loss is Fast
Extreme weight loss may be the goal from some fasters. There are a few other reasons why people try this fasting method. When I did my 100 day juice fast all those years ago, I lost about 100 pounds. When I was in the thick of a long juice fast it wasn’t uncommon for me to lose a pound a day. Results vary, as I was morbidly obese. I was down around 26 pounds after 23 days of juicing. A juice fast of 3-7 days will result in mostly water weight being lost which can calculate to around 2-7 lbs for women and up to and around 10 lbs for men. More about water weight can be found on this page.
This fasting method, like many other detox diets, is a hot button topic. A juice fast consists of only consuming raw juice from plants, vegetables, and fruits. There is an abstinence of solid foods.It can vary in the amount of time one wishes to fast. Some fasts last for just a few days and others for several weeks.
There are the usual warnings that come with any cleanse, detox, or fast. Fasters should always consult their physician before starting a juice fast.