Different Healthy Fruit Drinks in Plastic Bottles with black caps on white background with assorted fruit

As I’m typing this, I’m on Day 3 of Raw Generation’s juice cleanse and already my mind feels sharper and I’m much less bloated.

So, the short answer to the question is yes. Yes, a juice cleanse is worth it.

Whatever you want to do to dramatically improve your overall health (whether that’s going on a weight loss journey or adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet), a juice cleanse can help you with that.

Eating a healthy diet is hard in today’s world. We’re all so busy between work, our families and just life in general. If you want to kickstart your journey to a healthy weight, try juicing for weight loss.

But before you decide to try the best juice cleanses out there, you need to be honest with yourself about your reasons why.

And don’t forget: if you have any sort of medical concerns, talk to your doctor before starting a juice cleanse.

Green Apple Beside Two Clear Glass Jars with sliced cucumber and leafy greens on top of a wooden surface

What is juicing?

So first let’s talk about the difference between juices and smoothies. With a smoothie, you’re throwing all of your fruits and vegetables into a blender: fiber, skin (unless you remove it) and all. The juicing process removes all the fiber, leaving behind the pulp.

I’ve seen recipes online about some very clever people making cookies and other little snacks out of the leftover pulp. I haven’t tried it myself but some of them sound really interesting!

If you’re doing a DIY juice cleanse and don’t want to waste the pulp, I highly recommend checking out some of those recipes for ideas.

Other people will re-use the pulp in their gardens, tossing it into their compost bins. Once I get a garden going, that’s what I plan on doing.

In terms of juicing for weight loss, green juices are a must. You want to get in as many dark, leafy greens as you can.

In the beginning, green juices might taste really strong. So when you first start out, make sure the juice you buy has some fruit in there. They’ll usually have something like green apples plus the juice from citrus fruits like lime or lemon juice.

When I did Raw Generation’s lower sugar detox, the juices tasted pretty sweet to me. So if you’re worried about being able to get over the taste, Raw Generation’s juices are very beginner friendly.

Pros of Juicing for Weight Loss

The benefits of juicing for weight loss depends on how you use the juice cleanse. Let’s start with the most obvious benefit.

There’s no doubt that there are tons of vitamins and minerals in fruits and vegetables. Most juicing companies ship your juices frozen in order to retain as many of those micronutrients as possible.

tall glass of red juice on a white plate with grapes, strawberries, and sliced melons

While on a juice cleanse, you’ll be getting your daily dose of Vitamin C and other micronutrients that act as antioxidants. The health benefits of antioxidants include protecting your body against certain diseases like heart disease and cancer. Consuming antioxidant-rich foods can also help reduce inflammation in the body.

Some people who have gone on a juice cleanse have claimed that it also helped set their digestive system right. Others claim to have felt an improvement in their immune system.

Everybody is different. But we do know that a balanced diet rich in whole fruits and vegetables along with regular exercise can work wonders for your immune system and your health in general.

But we already know that part of a healthy diet is eating your fruits and vegetables. What is it about a juice cleanse that makes it worth it?

And the answer has a lot to do with your mindset. That’s because juicing shines a light on your eating habits as a whole.

Do you follow a balanced diet rich in whole fruits and vegetables? Does your calorie intake depend on your mood? Do you find yourself eating fewer calories or more calories when you’re upset or anxious?

Chances are if you’ve ever tried to lose weight in your life you might have asked yourself all those questions before. You can face all of these questions head on when you decide to do a juice cleanse.

That’s why your mindset is so important before you can reap the full benefits of a juice cleanse.

Yes, a juice cleanse will promote weight loss. But that weight loss will be short-lived if you’re not honest with yourself about what’s holding you back from fully embracing a healthy lifestyle.

Bulletin Board that states mindset matters and other assorted words of encouragement

Cons of Juicing For Weight Loss

Let’s address the elephant in the room here: while on a juice cleanse, your calorie intake is going to be very low which will result in rapid weight loss. You might feel weak, dizzy, be more susceptible to headaches with any sort of physical activity, and a host of other issues.

If you have any medical concerns then you should speak with your doctor before deciding to do a juice cleanse. However, if you’re a generally healthy person, there are 2 ways to avoid feeling like crap on a juice cleanse.

  • Drink water! I cannot emphasize this enough. When you think you’ve had enough water, drink more. A good start is half of your body weight in ounces. So if you weight 180, aim for 90 ounces of water to start.

  • Eat whole, raw fruits and vegetables. (The one exception are starchy vegetables like potatoes that can’t be eaten raw. But make sure you’re only baking them. Also, don’t add anything to them besides a bit of salt). Most juice cleanses acknowledge that you’re going to be hungry. I would avoid any “juice diet” that tries to steer you away from eating. You can eat a steamed sweet potato or white potato, apples, carrots, raw kale, raw broccoli (if that’s your thing), a salad with lemon juice as the dressing, ANY raw fruit or vegetable.

If you don’t eat enough calories for a prolonged period of time, this can result in low blood pressure, loss of muscle mass, nutrient deficiencies, and other medical concerns. However, severe symptoms are unlikely to occur in a 2-3 day span.

Listen to your body. If you’re experiencing anything that concerns you, don’t continue your juice cleanse. Seek medical attention if necessary.

I personally wouldn’t do a juice cleanse for longer than 3 days anyway, especially if you’re a beginner. Some people even opt for 2 days which is perfectly okay to start with.

If you happen to buy a 3 day juice program, you can do the first 2 days as a proper juice cleanse. Then you can save the last batch of juices as snacks throughout your next few days.

clear glasses with assorted green, orange, and red juices

How to Make Juicing for Weight Loss Sustainable

Juicing makes a great addition to a sustainable weight loss plan. To lose weight, you can start drinking juice as a healthy snack. Add a handful of nuts for some healthy fats and you’ll be able to create a meal plan that you’ll actually want to eat.

Here are some juice recipes to help get you started:

  • Carrot, apple, parsley, and beet juice. This juice is on the sweeter side but the parsley adds a nice layer so it’s not just sweet-on-sweet.

  • Green apple, romaine, Swiss chard, red leaf lettuce, and green pepper. You can add more or less apple depending on how sweet you like your juice.

It’s hard to give exact measurements in juice recipes since the amount of juice you end up with depends on the size and the freshness of your fruits and vegetables. The fresher your ingredients are, the more juice they’ll yield.

So I’ll give you an example of how much produce I use for 2 servings of juice:

  • 1 lb of carrots

  • 2 large apples

  • 1 lb beets

  • small handful of parsley

The great thing about juicing is that there’s really no need for exact measurements anyway. Once you start juicing, you’ll start to get a feel for how much produce you’ll need in a week.

Also, I highly recommend only purchasing whole fruits and vegetables. I know it can be tempting to get things like pre-chopped lettuce and carrots in order to save yourself some time. But these pre-chopped fruits and veggies aren’t as fresh as the ones that are sold whole.

Produce aisle in a Grocery Store

If you want a very simple way to get into drinking juice to lose weight, try juicing your oranges. It’s healthier to have a fresh juice than store-bought. Plus, it’s a familiar flavor so that will help you get used to the idea of juicing on a regular basis.

If you have a sweet tooth, try juicing after a meal. You’ll get all the nutrients from the juice since you’re drinking it right away. Plus the sweet taste you get from the juice will help knock out those cravings.

Pomegranate juice is great if you’re craving something different from your usual orange juice. If you’re feeling fancy, you can even put it in a wine glass and add some sparkling water. Finding little ways to add healthy alternatives to your already balanced diet will help you lose weight quickly without feeling deprived.

How to deal with weight gain after a juice cleanse

Weight gain after a juice cleanse is common. It’s natural to go up a few pounds when you start eating solid food again. After all, juice cleanses aren’t meant to be a long term weight loss solution.

Juice cleanses are great for changing your mindset around food. They get you to take a good look at what you decide to eat and drink throughout your day. They’re also great if you want to kickstart your healthy weight loss journey.

The key to dealing with weight gain after a juice cleanse is to acknowledge that it’s normal and it’s okay. The answer isn’t to immediately try to consume fewer calories.

First, ask yourself why you began this juice cleanse journey in the first place. Was it to lose weight for an event? Were you looking for a solution to your never-ending yo-yo dieting? Were you looking to increase your energy and feel better in general?

Once you’ve reconnected with your “why,” go deeper than that. How do you imagine yourself as a healthier person? What will you be able to do with more energy? What will you be able to do when you’re no longer fixated on the scale?

Now, go back to the drawing board and look at your diet as a whole. Keep a food journal for a few days if you have to. And be honest with yourself.

Are you getting the health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables?

Are you getting essential nutrients from healthy fats?

A person holding a Bowl of Vegetable Salad with hard boiled eggs on top

If you’re finding that you’re not consistent with adding healthy options to your meals then weight management in the long term is going to be much harder.

Now ask yourself about other parts of your life that are important when it comes to weight loss.

What does your support system look like?

Do you have anyone to help support your weight loss efforts?

If the answer is no, you may want to look into hiring a weight loss coach. Make sure that if you hire a weight loss coach, they’re also a certified health and wellness coach.

Certified health and wellness coaches will help you address issues that affect your overall health. If your goal is weight loss, there are so many other aspects that go into that. Stress management, sleep habits, and regular exercise are just a few of the topics that a health coach can help you with.

Woman Meditating outside with trees in the background

A few more thoughts…

There are a ton of juice cleanses out there. Some are better than others. Before you start on a juice cleanse, connect with why you want to do it.

Weight loss is a perfectly legitimate reason. Wanting to take a step back and re-evaluate your health is also a legitimate reason.

Whatever your reason is, if you have any medical conditions that you feel would be a problem while on a juice cleanse, speak with your doctor first.

In general, juice cleanses aren’t meant for people who have issues with nutrient deficiencies or other health concerns. Juice cleanses also aren’t a good idea for anyone with a history of eating disorders.

Also, if you’re trying to build some muscle mass, then juice cleanses probably aren’t a good idea for you right now. But you can still incorporate juices into your overall healthy diet without going full on. In fact, a green juice can help with your recovery as your muscles work to repair themselves.

You probably won’t even have the energy to lift weights while you’re on a juice cleanse. While I was on my juice cleanse, I only walked and did some light stretching. The results of my 3-day juice cleanse were great! But I really enjoy lifting weights, so I personally wouldn’t do more than 3 days.

I get a lot of questions from my health coaching clients about possible muscle loss while doing a juice cleanse. I wasn’t worried at all about this since I only did it for 3 days. But if you have any medical concerns that make you more susceptible to muscle loss then talk to your doctor.

Using a juice cleanse to kickstart your weight loss journey can help break you out of a plateau. It can help reconnect you with why you want to create a healthier version of yourself. Trying the best juice cleanses is the first step to you taking charge of your health.

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