Doing a juice cleanse, especially for the first time, takes some commitment. The worse your current dietary habits, the more dedication will be required. You are breaking bad habits and essentially hitting the reset button. But the return on investment – to use business-speak – can be substantial. The saying that you only get out of something what you put into it is apropos. But we’re talking about energy and commitment, not necessarily how much money you spend. Doing a juice cleanse need not be expensive. Here is a summary of what you’ll need:
Read up on what juicing is, why it is done, and how it is done. Before starting a juice cleanse, you’ll want to go through a pre-cleanse period where you improve or modify your diet. If you are prone to fast food, doughnuts and soda, you’ll want to knock that out before starting a juice cleanse. Switching suddenly could be too much of a shock to the system and you could literally get sick. It’s also common to wean oneself off caffeine and alcohol ahead of time.
Don’t neglect the power of your own decisions. A crucial step in doing a juice cleanse is to decide WHY you want to do it and then decide to DO it. Health? Energy? Improve your lifestyle? All of the above? To quote a popular translation of Buddhist text, “We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.” Decide and make it happen.
A pre-cleanse period normally lasts 1-7 days, depending on your eating habits. The actual juice cleanse commonly goes for three days. The post-cleanse period, often three days as well, is also vital. The key here is to take one step at a time. No need to shock your system.
Remove Toxins From Your Kitchen
If you have junk food, highly processed and sugary food in your kitchen, more than likely you’ll crave it and want to eat it. Just as important as what you have is what you DON’T have. Enlist the cooperation of your housemates as much as possible and get rid of the deep fat fried, the artificial, the high fructose corn syrup, the sugar-loaded snacks, etc. Even the so-called “natural” is highly suspect. Organic is always a wiser choice.
Water, Lots and Lots of Water
Many juice systems require that you drink eight or more glasses of water per day. Countless people simply do not get enough water. Besides being a great idea overall, hydration is essential in juicing. We recommend bottled or purified water due to chemicals added to much of our tap water these days.
It is recommended to add lemon to your water to aid in the detoxification process. You can use a lemon squeezer to make this easier.
A Good Juicer
The type of juicer to choose will depend largely on your budget, what types of fruits and vegetables you’re using, and your personal preference. There is no right or wrong kind. The first thing to know is the different categories of juicer. If cost is not an issue, you may choose to splurge on a Green Star Elite for juicing greens. On a budget? The Breville Compact Juice Extractor might be your best bet. Prices range from under $100 to well over $2,000. Fortunately, we’ve provided detailed guides on which juicer to buy on our website.
Of course juicing is all about what you’re putting into your body. It is wise to use organic fruits and vegetables, but that will depend on your budget and preference. After you’ve purged your fridge of caustic soda, your freezer of diabolic ice cream, and your pantry of evil Oreos, replenish your cache with REAL food, fruits and vegetables for juicing. Get the munchies? Add some nuts, raw almond butter, seaweed, and healthy items that you can fall back on when the going gets rough. Get some portable containers and put your healthy snacks in them so you don’t go to the dreaded drive-through.
Some good produce to stock are: kale, celery, collard greens, cucumbers, ginger, apples, carrots, cabbage, broccoli, lemons.
Exercise & Rest
Regular exercise and sufficient rest before, during, and after a cleanse is advisable. While mid-cleanse you should keep the exercise light. Your body is transitioning. Exercise and sleep are important in any context.
Take pride in what you’re doing. Not everyone has the discipline. Once you feel better and possess more physical energy and mental acuity, you may want to make juicing a habit. And it’ll be a good one!