Health & Beauty

How to Detox: A Guide to Juice Cleanse Diets

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Perhaps more popular than ever, juice cleanses involve packing loads of nutrient-rich fruit and veggies into a blender and drinking lots of it over the course of a few days. And these antioxidant-packed potions can have a variety of health benefits.

But what’s it all about? With so much information to gulp down, it can be hard to know where to get started. Read on to find out more about detox cleanses.

In this article:

What Is a Cleanse Diet?

Aerial view of three glasses of different vegetable juices: beet, carrot and cucumber.

Think of detox cleanses as short diets aimed at kicking toxins to the curb and leaving you feeling refreshed and revitalized. A cleanse diet involves a few days on an exclusive diet of fruit and vegetables, often in juice form. There are many different cleanse programs out there, all with different hopeful outcomes, from weight loss to tastebud training. Always talk to your doctor or a dietician before beginning any juice cleanse or detox.

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What Are the Benefits of a Juice Cleanse Diet? And Other Things to Know

OK, a cool glass of beetroot might not sound overly appetizing . . . but just think of how happy your body will be with all those nutrients, antioxidants and vitamins! Here’s what all the hype is about:

What are the benefits of a detox cleanse?

Certain detoxes claim to lead to increased energy, heightened alertness and reduced cravings. It’s a great way to kick unhealthy habits, and some people allege that a sustained juice cleanse will retrain your tastebuds to enjoy healthier grub. 

What are toxins?

It depends on who you’re asking — but generally, toxins refer to a whole bunch of different chemicals, pollutants and artificial food ingredients that get into our body via unhealthy foods. Your body can get rid of toxins itself, but the hope is that juicing can speed this process up. 

What will a detox feel like?

For a lot of people: hangry and cranky. But it’s not all bad. If you’re used to having a sugary afternoon pick-me-up or a few cups of coffee in the morning, then you might feel some discomfort, like headaches. 

Switching to an all-juice diet is a pretty big change and that comes with cravings and hunger too. However, some people report feeling more awake, refreshed and energized after a few bottles of nourishing, nutritious juice pulp.

So, as we said, not all bad. Find out how one of our editors fared on their three-day cleanse.

What’s the Best Detox Cleanse for Me?

A woman smiling while blending vegetables to make a smoothie.

The juice cleanse world is a wide one with many options. It might seem a little overwhelming. However, determining which cleanse is the right choice for you will depend on what you want to achieve and how long you want to commit for. And be sure to discuss these options with a doctor or a dietician before you get started. Here are a few of the most-popular methods:

Master Cleanse

For experienced cleansers only. The Master Cleanse is one of the oldest techniques around and was created in the 1940s by dietician Stanley Burroughs. The whole process clocks in at an arduous 10 days and is only for detox pros. The Master Cleanse only includes lemon water, maple syrup and cayenne pepper.

Juice Cleanse

The juice detox is the most common and works as a good mid-point for would-be cleansers. You’ll have a week to steadily wean yourself onto a liquid diet and then choose between one- to five-day programs. The offering is a little more varied too, with any fruit or vegetable-based juice up for grabs.

Detox Cleanse

If you can’t stomach switching to liquids exclusively, then the detox cleanse could be for you. Diet plans are restricted to fruit, vegetables, nuts and seeds. Some plans even include meat and fish. The bulk of the plan consists of cruciferous vegetables and leafy greens. It’s best to steer clear of heavy carbohydrates, like potatoes and lentils.

Colon cleanse

This is a cleanse for people with bowel problems, such as constipation. The general idea is that you load up on fiber-rich foods, like legumes, fruit skins and rice. You can wash down all this fiber with lukewarm, salted water. And that’s it. The cleanse lasts a few days and could help alleviate digestive issues.

What Types of Foods and Juices Can I Use to Detox?

When deciding what to put through your juicer, there’s a veritable smorgasbord of delicious fruit and vegetables to choose. You’ll want a rainbow of colors — think yellow bananas, green kale, oranges . . . This way, you’ll be getting a spread of different vitamins and minerals.

Wheatgrass

Wheatgrass bundled and tied with yarn.

Puts the super in superfood. This diminutive wheat plant is chock-full of vitamins and minerals. It doesn’t have the best flavor and can be a little stomach-churning when eaten alone, so we recommend sprinkling a little in with the rest of your ingredients.

Beets

A cut up beet on a cutting board next to whole beets.

Bright red beets are rich in nutrients and are essential for maintaining healthy blood flow.

Nut milks

Different nut milks in glasses next to the whole nuts in bowls.

Protein is essential for many healthy bodily functions, like muscle growth and repair. Unfortunately, a lot of fruit and vegetables don’t contain much of it. To keep your protein levels up, you might want to include nut milks, like almond or cashew, in your diet plan. You could always mix these in with something sweet to create a thick and creamy dessert.

Kale

Raw kale in a bowl.

Humble kale is packed with plenty of nutrients and goes with just about anything. A large handful has lots of vitamins and doesn’t overpower the flavor.

Banana

A sliced banana on a cutting board.

The foundation of any good juice or smoothie. A jack-of-all-trades, the banana has the consistency to bind your ingredients together and deliver a little thickness in your shakes.

Superfood Powder

Different superfood powders in small piles on a counter.

Superfood powders can be stirred or sprinkled into other juices or dishes for a dash of healthy goodness.

Juice Detox Tips

  • Prepare your body – As with most things, going 0-100 doesn’t end well. Build up to your cleanse days by increasing the amount of raw fruit and vegetables you eat in the days before you start your juice detox.
  • Don’t forget your protein – Mixing cashew or almond nut milk in with your fruit blend ensures you still get vital nutrients that aren’t as prevalent in fruit and veg. 
  • Remember to keep drinking water – Yes, you’re drinking juice, but that doesn’t mean you can forgo water. Stay hydrated, friends. 

FAQs

A woman looking blissfully happy while sipping a green juice in her kitchen.

What is the best inflammation detox?

Juice cleanses that are packed with antioxidant-rich fruit and vegetables, and some people take them to help alleviate inflammation. Look for diet plans that include carrots, beetroot and plenty of healthy greens, like kale and spinach. 

What is the top-rated cleanse?

It depends on what you want to achieve. It’s worth considering several factors before you get started, including:

  • Duration
  • Whether you want to keep it liquid-based or include some foods
  • Any allergies you might have
  • How much you’re willing to cut from your current eating habits 

What is the fastest detox cleanse?

The fastest detox cleanse can last as little as one day. You’ll likely need a few days to feel the full effects of a cleansing course. However, a day’s detox can leaving you feeling refreshed. 

Start your day with a glass of lemon water and then stick to raw fruit and vegetables for the full day. 

What is the best body cleanse for weight loss? 

Cleansing doesn’t always guarantee weight loss. But if you’re interested in losing weight, you can try cutting out excess calories and sticking with an all-juice detox. Glasses of low-calorie fruit and vegetable juice are rich in essential nutrients, without being packed full of all the additives that come with processed foodstuff. 

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