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To Juice Fast or Not to Juice Fast?

To juice-fast? Or Not to Juice Fast?

I have been toying lately with the idea of taking on a juice fast. I have recently returned from a vacation and probably ate and drank a bit more than was good for me.

And a juice fast might be just what I need.

This popular, but somewhat controversial, diet may help me ‘cleanse’ my body of pollutants, toxins, and food laced with preservatives.

I wouldn’t mind losing the holiday pounds. But to be honest, I am not considering a fast as a quick fix for weight, or other health problems.

Rather, I am looking to fix a much more simple problem: Getting off that holiday diet. Every time, I head off for a few days and relax, I find I carry on with that holiday diet long after I come home. And I want to break that cycle.

So, I am simply considering juicing as a way to jump start healthier eating. And as I am new to this detox diet, I only plan on doing it for two to three days.

How the Juicing Fad Began

While Juice Fasting may be presented as new fad, it’s actually been around for decades and can be traced back to the Lemonade Diet.  This diet was developed first by Stanley Burroughs in the 1940s, and reappeared in  the 1970s in his books The Master Cleanser and Healing for the Age of Enlightenment.

This is a pretty severe plan and is also known as the Master Cleanse or Maple Syrup Diet. Basically it means that for up to two weeks, you consume nothing but a Master Cleanse drink comprising

  • 2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons grade-B organic maple syrup
  • 1/10 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 10 ounces filtered water

Beyonce, Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher have popularized this blend, with Beyonce saying she lost 20 pounds on the diet for the movie Dreamgirls.

You can more details about the Master Cleanse Diet here.

Committing to Raw Fruit & Vegetable Juice

Now, I am not going there – I can’t imagine surviving on this diet for two weeks, not a lot of calories, empty or otherwise there.

Rather, I am thinking of a short-term diet of raw vegetable and fruit juice, and water.

I have heard from friends that have tread this path before me that they had increased energy and vitality after juicing, and lost a little weight as a bonus.

And they had a good tip for me: Make your own juices as much as possible. Producing you own juice, especially with a good blender, like our Vitamix range, ensures that you get the whole fruit and vegetable, with all its goodness and fiber.  Overly processed juices remove all the pulp, and with it, much of the goodness.

But I am also hoping that two to three days of this will whet my appetite for the energized feeling that can come with a healthier diet.

Juice Fasting Recipes

So popular have juice fasts become that many corporations are now encouraging employees to organize juice fasting groups for bonding . Seriously, they are.

And the Kimpton’s Hotel Palomar in San Francisco has launched a juice cleanse package, in partnership, with Pressed Juicery. So, you can keep that juice fast going during a stay.

Or, as the hotel itself says, this juice plan is “perfect for business and leisure travellers looking to reboot their health while on the road.”

This detox diet has definitely gone mainstream.

The Pressed, Pampered & Purified package is available as a “one-day, one-night cleanse for a quick refresher course or a more dedicated three-day, two-night cleanse”.

And the juice recipes don’t look too bad at all.

  • Greens 2 — kale, spinach, romaine, parsley, cucumber, celery, apple and lemon
  • Citrus 2 — pineapple, green apple, lemon and mint
  • Roots 3 — beetroot, apple, lemon and ginger
  • Citrus 4 — cucumber, pineapple, lemon, coconut water and aloe vera
  • Greens 3 — kale, spinach, romaine, parsley, cucumber, celery, apple, lemon and ginger
  • Vanilla Almond

For some more recipes, check out this article by Living Green Magazine. And these may also help you lose weight.

Extreme Juicing

If you want to know the levels some people will go to with juicing, check out the story of Australian businessman Joe Cross. Joe lost 90 pounds after taking on a 60-day juice fast after tipping the scale at 310 pounds. The 40-year-old traveled to America, and under a doctor’s supervision, drank his way across the country, all while interviewing Americans about their diet and attitudes toward food.

His transformation and mission to understand why so many of us live unhealthy lifestyles are chronicled in the film Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead, released in 2011. You can watch that movie here.

Giving Juicing a Go

I appreciate that many medical experts say there is no scientific evidence that juice fasting provides any detox benefits. They recommend you avoid smoking to avoid toxins, and you trust your liver for the rest.

I don’t smoke, so that is covered. But I think I will give this diet a go anyway for a few days and see how I feel.

A quick check of Facebook, shows there are also a number of groups I can check with when I start, for motivation and recipe ideas.

But if you have any experience juice, fasting, your comments on the experience and tips would be greatly appreciated. Just leave them below!

And if you want to read more about just how good Vitamix Blenders really are, and how they are self-cleaning, read this blog post - Vitamix: The Ultimate Kitchen Tool For Health & Nutrition.

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