Is juice fasting safe?
As I contemplate starting a major juice fast, I want to know if I am putting my health in jeopardy by following some wild fad.
So, I looked around to find out what credible experts have to say about juice fasting safety. Found this post on LiveScience that warns of the danger of juice fasting. The list of juice fasting safety concerns includes:
1. Juice fasting cleanses are usually low in protein.
Is low protein consumption unsafe? Sure it is. How you define ‘low’ is a matter of perspective however. If you search around, you’ll find a multitude of diverging opinions on how much protein humans need.
Beyond that, a juice fast is a temporary endeavor. So, you may intake lower protein than usual, for a short period of time. How unsafe is that? For me, it’s not a concern. And if it were, I’d simply add some organic protein powder to my juice.
2. Juice fasts are low in calories.
This is one totally bogus. You can make your calorie needs safe by simply drinking more juice! Of course getting too few calories is unsafe. Drink more juice. You are in control of how much juice you drink and most juice fasting gurus suggest drinking as much as you want.
Fruit and vegetable juice, by the way, is not a low-calorie food. It’s easy to get 2000-2500 calories a day.
3. People might not feel so great during a juice fast.
Ok – still not sold on juice fasting not being safe. You might not feel good? Tell you what: I feel like total shit every day I eat the Standard American Diet. During a juice fast I would expect an adjustment period in which I wouldn’t feel good. In fact, I’ve experienced that before.
Again, if you look online, you stories of people claiming to have felt horribly for the first 2-3 days of juice fasting, followed by long periods of unbridled energy and feelings of total wellness.
4. The extremeness of the regimen could be part of the appeal.
This one is a valid concern. Juice fasting safety may be more of a psychological issue than physical. Binge eater, compulsive eaters and others may find escape in a juice diet by eliminating all other food temptations. In other words, the fast serves as an escape from food issues.
If your juice diet is successful, your food issues will be waiting for you on the other side of it.
5. Cleanses may legitimize the idea that self-indulgence should be punished.
LiveScience seems to be suggesting here that people who have spent time indulging in food may engage in an all juice diet for the purpose of punishing themselves. I can see that. Here’s my response: Don’t do that.
Most people who succeed at a juice diet begin with the goal of weight loss, more energy and greater health in mind. This is the right approach.
6. The approach is scientifically unfounded and expensive.
Hmm…if drinking tons of raw fruits and vegetables is not obviously good for you, then neither is breathing. And the claim regarding expense is completely irrelevant. Juicing – especially if you use 100% organic fruits and vegetables – is not cheaper than eating whole foods. Don’t start juicing to save money.
Don’t let concerns like these stop you from beginning a juice fast. Learn to do it right. Do your research. Learn to manage your mind and emotions for staying power. Just go for it.
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