Should you be juicing your way to a healthier and slimmer you? Or is it just a fad that should be ditched.
Raw juice fasts and diets have received credit for extreme weight loss (especially among celebrities), curing serious illnesses, and vitality. But what is truth and what is fiction? Experts weigh in on what you need to consider about juicing.
Yes or no to juicing…
‘Juicing detox (low calorie) diets are not proven to be effective and may do more damage than good,’ says Catherine Day, a registered dietician based in Cape Town. ‘If juicing is used as part of a healthy eating plan, however, it can be beneficial due to the higher intake of micronutrients and phytonutrients (vitamins and minerals) – this is only if your previous diet or eating plan was low in fruits and vegetables. You don’t need to juice to receive an adequate amount
‘Detox juicing diets are not necessarily a healthy and sustainable way to lose weight,’ she adds, ‘especially if the calories per day are too low (<1 000 kCal). The weight will not stay off as most of it would be in the form of water and muscle mass loss. And when you lose muscle mass, you damage your metabolism.’
Catherine believes that promoting juicing diets as a way to detox is simply a marketing ploy: ‘The body has its own detoxification systems… your liver, kidneys, and the lymphatic system are the body’s detoxification systems, and they can handle most potentially toxic substances.’
Juicing to a healthier lifestyle
Dr Nancy Lord, a George-based homeopath who has been juicing daily since 2004, says, ‘Adding a raw juice to your daily intake can help achieve optimal health in terms of getting all the nutrients your body needs. It’s not a cure for medical conditions, but can assist your body to recover.’
Dr Lord juices regularly herself as part of her eating plan. ‘It started with chronic bowel problems,’ she explains. ‘I had tried all forms of treatment and felt the need for a boost of vitamins, enzymes and nutrients.’ Dr Lord’s immune system was severely compromised. ‘When I started juicing, I went through a major detox, and after that I started feeling much healthier! Juicing helped decrease inflammation in my body. It boosted my immune system,
increased my energy levels, and helped to balance my digestive system. It also made my bowel movements more regular.’ Dr Lord strongly recommends juicing vegetables as an add-on to a healthy eating plan to her patients.
Juice one of the following as part of your diet:
Your daily dose of vitality
- 1 or 2 large carrots
- 1 beetroot
- a handful of spinach
- 1 celery stalk
- 1cm fresh ginger root
- 1 small radish
- small handful of parsley
- small handful of mint
- lemon with peel
- broccoli (optional)
Juice all the ingredients and enjoy!
For glowing skin
- 1 beetroot
- 2 oranges
- 2 red apples
- 1 cucumber
- 1 stick of celery
Juice all ingredients and sip your way to a glowing complexion.
For colds and flu
- banana (peeled and chopped)
- 250ml kale
- 250ml chopped pineapple
- 125ml water
- 250ml almond milk
Blend all the ingredients until smooth and frothy.
Feature: Yolandi North. Photo: Fotolia.com