Ever wanted to try a juice cleanse? The benefits of going on an all-juice cleanse may be debatable, but that doesn't stop many from trying it out. Take our own Sugar editors; whether it's to detox after an indulgent vacation or just to jump-start a healthier lifestyle, some around here have tried and tested the all-juice diet. Read on to find out more about the pros and cons of three popular juice cleanses and how hard (or easy!) each was to complete.
I've never been one for detoxes, cleanses, or fasts. As everyone says — including FitSugar! — your body is naturally wired to detoxify itself. But in the new year, I'd been feeling like nothing but an old lady: sluggish, tired, ridden with problems from nighttime allergies to a hard time focusing. I work in the food industry, and between tradeshows and heavy meals, I felt nauseated whenever I even smelled rich food. My digestive system hated me.
I was inspired by Michele's experience with the Remove program. I was inspired by how she'd felt, but didn't have a few hundred dollars to spare. I came across an old edition of GOOP, Gwyneth Paltrow's newsletter, that talked about a 7-day detox sans coffee, sugar, alcohol, gluten, dairy, soy, fatty nuts, red meat, shellfish, and nightshade vegetables. Before I knew it, I'd committed to myself to trying it out.
To see what amusebouche thought of the detox, read more
Here are two awesome reasons to like actress Mariska Hargitay: she's completely happy with her body and is the founder of the Joyful Heart Foundation — an organization that provides support to survivors of sexual assault, child abuse, and domestic violence. Besides her acting gig on Law & Order: SVU, Mariska also has another full-time job as mother to August, her 3-year-old son. Despite a crazy schedule, the star manages to always keep her energy up, which she tells Health magazine is due in part to detoxing.
To stay awake and alert, Mariska follows the program laid out in Clean: The Revolutionary Program to Restore the Body's Natural Ability to Heal Itself. Written by detoxing expert Dr. Alejandro Junger, MD, Clean puts forth the argument that so many of our ailments (including low energy) are due to toxin build-up in our bodies. Dr. Junger's three-week cleanse promises to "reactivate our detoxification system to its fullest capabilities." Besides Mariska, stars like Gwyneth Paltrow have also followed Dr. Junger's program, which comes with a hefty $350 price tag. The cleanse consists of one solid meal comprised of whole, organic foods and two meal-replacement shakes per day, along with a variety of pill supplements.
At the time of the interview, Mariska had just finished the 21-day cleanse with one little hiccup. When her neighbor, chef Ina Garten, invited her to dinner, Mariska went and ate wholeheartedly. While stars like Mariska and Gwyneth are obvious fans of the Clean program, the jury is still out on the validity of cleansing. I for one don't think I want to give up solid food for such a long time. How about you?
For many, going on a juice cleanse, fast, or any other calorie-restrictive diet is no longer seen as unhealthy, but instead, is the thing to do. Celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow and Salma Hayek make cleanses seem fashionable, and trainers like David Kirsch give detoxes a healthy stamp of approval. Many of you have said that cleansing is a great way to flush toxins from the body, or that you'd at least like to try one out.
Proponents of cleansing say it's a necessity: we take in so much crap (environmentally, too) that detoxing is the only way to restore our bodies. These diets are a means to purify the digestive system, which rids the body of detrimental toxins. The bonus side effects? Weight loss, great skin, more energy, and a clearer mind. Are these claims for real, or just a state of mind by those hopping aboard this trend? With the help of Michael Gershon, M.D., a Columbia University professor who has spent his career researching the digestive system, and a few other experts in the medical field, Vogue examines the claims of juice fasts and detoxes to see if they hold any merit. The results are eye-opening and may make you think twice before plopping down $400 on a cleansing kit.
To find out what the experts say about cleansing, read more