You’ve probably seen it on Facebook, or heard people talking about it at work. In short, the term ‘Juicing’ or ‘the Juice Diet’ refers to a diet whereby all / the majority of your food is in liquid form. This is usually a mix of juiced fruits and blended leafy vegetables.
Juicing is often described as a way to “quickly lose weight” or “get beach ready in a few weeks”.
Surely There Are Some Benefits?
YES – Without a doubt, juicing is a good way to get important nutrients in to your body easily – this is especially true if you dislike fruit and veg.
Not only this, but you can mask the taste of your less-favourite fruit and veg with the use of tasty berries. You’ll also find many people throwing often-tasteless spinach and courgette in the mix.
Isn’t Juicing Just Drinking Smoothies?
Not entirely. The main difference is fibre.
Juicing filters out a lot of the fibres, thus leaving you with a lid juice. The fibrous pulp is then discarded.
On the otherhand, blending fruit and veg gives you a smoothie, which is often a much thicker liquid and includes more of the fibre from the fruit and veg. However, wouldn’t recommend a smoothie diet either..
Reasons To Avoid Juicing
You may have heard some celebrities claim that juicing “helped me lose 3 stone in 28 days”, without barely exercising. This rapid weight loss is extremely unhealthy and isn’t something that we promote.
Whilst juicing can help get in those important nutrients, it isn’t an entirely sustainable method of weight loss to help you lose fat, and more importantly, keep it off!
- Juicing removes all the fibre from the fruit (as discussed) – this reduces satiety (feeling full).
- Fruit that is juiced has almost double double the amount of sugar compared to having an equivalent portion size of regular fruit.
- It provides an un-balanced diet due to low amounts of fats and protein. It provides a lack of real, wholesome foods including lean protein, healthy fats and wholegrains.
- You’ll probably be consuming very little calories – this can slow down your metabolic rate, so when you return to eating ‘normal’ again, you could pack on more weight than you’ve lost!
- Juice diets limit your favourite foods and beverages, which can lead to binging and cheat meals (often high in processed foods/salt/sugar/etc.)
If you’ve personally used juicing before as a temporary measure, and you’ve kept the weight off, then that is fantastic – you’ve found something that has worked for you! Many people struggle to get back into regular eating.
What Should I Do Instead?
Eating a balanced diet is the way forward. Wholefoods that are nutrient-dense (combine with some naughty foods that you like e.g. chocolate) will provide a sustainable means of losing fat.
Smoothies however, especially when protein-packed, can be a great snack or quick-and-easy meal replacement, providing essential nutrients and minerals should you opt for them.
Completing resistance training and cardio workouts around 3-5 times per week will also aid in reaching your goals.
Avoid juice diets, ‘tea-toxing’, 5:2 and all the other fad diets. These provide unsustainable and unhealthy results. Stick to eating real, unprocessed foods, fruit and veg, as well as the occasional treat, and you’ll make progress. Calories are king, so remember that to lose fat you need to burn more than you eat!