Just because juice cleanses are growing in popularity and pre-made juices are easier to come by doesnt mean you should jump right into a juice cleanse.
There are steps to take to get ready for a cleanse and a proper way to return to eating solid foods when the cleanse is complete.
You also need to be prepared for it mentally. Juice cleanses are not always easy. The process of detoxification means youll very likely have some not-so-great symptoms including headache, fever, skin reactions, etc.
Time may be one of the most important factors in deciding to do a juice cleanse. Keep in mind that it is likely to affect you physically and mentally, so dont attempt a cleanse at a time when youre under high stress and wont be able to love yourself. It also would be a good idea to pick a time when you may have a few days off of work or can at least call out if you do find yourself under the weather.
Make a plan and go shopping. First, figure out how long you plan to cleanse. Will it be 1 day, 3 days, 5 days, 7 days? Determine that, and then take the time to figure out what juices youll be making. Write yourself a menu and determine what fruits and vegetables youre going to need to make your juices. Stock your refrigerator with these foods before you get started so that you dont have to run to the store 5 times a day.
Follow a pre-cleanse diet. If you go from eating pizza, French fries and soda straight into a strict cleanse, its going to be significantly harder to make it through. Get your body ready for the cleanse by shifting your diet to one thats full of clean, unprocessed foods for about a week before the cleanse. Eat plenty of green salads, legumes, lightly steamed organic vegetables and nutrient dense fruits. Cut out caffeine, sugar and alcohol. Youll be happy you did.
Doing the Cleanse
Rule number one drink lots of water. Sure, youre going to be drinking a lot of liquid while juicing, but water is going to help flush everything out of your body. For every one glass of juice you drink, have a glass of water.
Rule number two get rest. Your body will go through some changes. Its easier on the digestive system, but while the toxins are getting out of the areas where theyve been trapped and move through your system, you will likely experience some negative symptoms of the detox. Allowing your body to rest will help ease the symptoms. Practice yoga, meditate or find other ways to calm your mind.
Rule number three dont get discouraged. When these negative symptoms begin, rest, meditate, do yoga, read, go for a walk. Dont quit. The benefits to your health by ridding your body of toxins will be worth it.
After the Cleanse
The best way to break a cleanse is to ease out of it, similar to the way you ideally eased into it. The first day of consuming solid foods, eat fruits and lightly steamed vegetables. Day two, start to re-introduce brown rice and legumes. Three days post-cleanse you can start returning to a wider variety of foods.
Hopefully returning to normal after a cleanse is a new normal. If your diet had been full of processed foods, sugars and caffeine, this is your chance to start anew. Keep your diet focused on quality, organic and unprocessed foods to avoid undoing the benefits of your cleanse.