to juice or not to juice?

guys, I've been hearing a lot about juice cleanses. One of my good friends recently did one and raved about it, even though she was pretty much angry at the world for 5 days...
juiced up.

What is this new(ish) thing?

this is what some people say about juice cleanses:

my initial thoughts?
this is dumb.
I mean, not eating solid food for 3-5 days?
Cleansing your body?
I get the whole 'easier for your body to absorb' thing, that makes sense.
But I didn't (don't?) buy into the whole cleanse thing. 
Can't eating lots of salad and broccoli do the same thing?

Honestly I don't know if my body could survive on less than 1000 calories a day. And if I go running that day? Forget it. It seems like that would be starving myself. Plus, remember my post about sugar not too long ago? Aren't juices like...ALL sugar? Even natural sugar your body has a crazy reaction to. All that sugar going into your body makes your pancreas produce insulin, which then moves that sugar stuff which is now glucose- right directly into your cells. Sick.

and check this out:

After 30 minutes
As your cells suck up the glucose, your blood sugar level can start to plummet and you may feel dizzy.

Meanwhile, lacking enough calories, your body is operating off its supply of glycogen, a form of short-term energy stored in the liver and muscles.
After two days
With each shot of juice, your insulin levels skyrocket, then crash. Your glycogen stores are pretty much gone, leaving your tank on empty—and you feeling weak and listless.

Since you're getting only about half the calories you need, your body draws on two long-term power sources: triglycerides, a type of energy stored in fat cells (woo-hoo!), and protein, taken straight from your muscles (oops). You begin to lose muscle mass, even if you're still exercising every day.
After three days
Your brain is not happy. It enters into semi-starvation mode and gobbles ketones, fuel that comes from the breakdown of fat. Ketones work, but they're like low-grade gasoline; as a result, you may feel unfocused or irritable. (Any "mental clarity" is likely due to a strong placebo effect.)

Sans a fresh protein infusion, your brain is also lacking amino acids, the raw materials that neurotransmitters need to maintain your mood. If you're prone to depression, you may start feeling blue.
The proteins in your shrinking muscles break down into ammonia and uric acid, unwelcome chemicals that invade your bloodstream. Now your kidneys are busy detoxing your detox.
Stay near the bathroom: The juice's high carbohydrate load causes a surfeit of water to enter the intestines. That extra H2O in your gut means you're apt to get diarrhea.
After four days
With no food to digest, your small intestine feels ignored. Its villi—the rows of tiny fibers that move food elements into the blood—start to atrophy. Your diarrhea may get worse, leading to dehydration... and there goes your rosy glow.

On the eighth day
Solid food! But uh-oh—you've lost muscle. Even if you go back to your regular eating habits, you now have less muscle mass to burn those calories; instead, the calories are more likely to be turned into fat. (Hence, one reason yo-yo dieting makes it harder to lose weight: Your reduced muscle-to-fat ratio messes up your metabolism and makes calories much harder to work off.)

copied from Women's Health.

Losing muscle mass? What the what! I hardly have any of that to begin with, I don't want to lose it! and mmm being apt to get diarrhea? Sounds GREAT. Now, I understand that some of these cleanses that you order have protein packed drinks, but still. Probably not as much protein that you could get from, I don't know, SOLID food?!

And I also get it is a great source of vitamins, because who normally ingests a huge amount of vitamins on a daily basis? I certainly don't. But, that said- your body can only absorb certain amounts and types of vitamins- water soluble v's are pretty much flushed out when you pee. 

So far, from what I have read- the bad stuff outweighs the good with regards to a juice cleanse. What are your thoughts? Should I try a 3 day cleanse and report it back to you? Or should I just stick to eating healthy and eating clean? 


Alivia said...

The main thing I think about with "juicing" is that you are taking out ALL of the fiber from the fruit/vegetable. Besides, you know, the obvious reason you want fiber, your body has an extremely hard (hah) time functioning without it.
So, cousin, my vote is for no juicing.

Kiersten said...

I've seen things like this before. A friend of mine almost did one last year that involved cayenne pepper and I forget what else. I wouldn't do it... people eat solid food for a reason, and with all those side-effects, it doesn't seem worth it. Just drink lots of water and cranberry juice, and eat veggies!
<3 Kiersten

Serena said...

My dad is super into nutrition and healthy living, and as a chef, knows a lot about it. He is a big fan of juicing as a substitute for ONE meal, not all three. He fully believes it's not good to completely deplete your body of solid food. However, he thinks that smoothies are a great alternative if you are into the juice cleanse... as you still get the fiber and benefits of solid food, but in a liguid form which aids digestion. I try to have a spinach and kale smoothie for breakfast as often as possible, and I've noticed a HUGE difference in how I feel on days when I have one (good, full of energy) as opposed to days when I don't.

B said...

I know people who have done them and rave about them, but also admit to being tired and super grumpy.

i totally agree with you. this seems ridic. people were meant to eat solid food. however, i do see the benefit of incorporating veggie juices into your diet to get more nutrients. every now and then ill make a green juice for breakfast/snack and i like that :)