The Do’s & Don’ts of a Pre-Thanksgiving Juice Cleanse

Thanksgiving Dinner

With the holidays looming around the corner, many of us are scheduling hair cuts (and colors), picking out our Hostess with the Mostest party dresses, getting our mani-pedis in, and perhaps a facial. But what we really need is stamina – holidays are hard work! – and that can only come from a healthy diet (no, not an IV drip of pumpkin spice lattes). At Intelligent Gourmet, it’s my mission to help us look better, feel better, and live better, all of which you can kickstart with a pre-Thanksgiving juice cleanse. But, don’t just drink any juice, because the wrong juice cleanse can send you into Thanksgiving craving the WHOLE PIE! Here are the do’s and don’ts of an energizing pre-holiday cleanse.

How clean is your juice cleanse?

Don’t…

Drink juices that are high in sugar. Many of the store-bought, mass-produced juices we’ve found have more sugar than a can of Mountain Dew in every bottle. If you drink 6 of those per day, you’ll feel energized alright – it’s called a sugar high! – but will come crashing down. And, your body’s insulin levels will skyrocket, making you crave real food to soak it up. That is not how you want to sit down at the turkey (or tofurky) table.

Do…

Drink juices that are lower in sugar and balanced with protein. We balance each day’s juice plan with some veggie-heavy juices that are lower in sugar, and some nut milk juices that are filling and satisfying. That way, you avoid sugar-high spikes, crashes, and the cravings that come with them!

Creamsicle orange juice

 

Don’t…

Jump in to a cleanse without proper preparation. While it may be tempting to start a cleanse the day after that Holiday Cookie Bake, shifting from unhealthy eating habits straight to a juice cleanse can result in some uncomfortable gastrointestinal moments. Ease in to your cleanse with a few days of a fruit, vegetable and lean protein diet – and ease out of it the same way.

Have you tried our latest seasonal juices? Come by to see what we have in store for the holidays!

 

 

Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead

Celery and Garlic Juice

No, this title isn’t about your state of being two weeks after making your New Year’s Resolutions (you’ve stuck to them like glue, right?). It’s the title of a 2010 documentary (which you’ve probably heard of) that follows Joe Cross for 60 days as he does an extended juice fast to regain his health.

And, he has a lot of health problems. Starting the film, he weighs in at 309 pounds and is on steroid medications to treat a rare autoimmune disorder. The drugs, of course, were only treating the symptoms, not the underlying issues, so Cross loads up his car with a generator and a juicer, fruits and vegetables, and takes off on a cross-country road trip around America for two months filming a documentary on health.

Vegetables, fruits, nuts, beans, and water. That’s it.

Yes, he loses a lot of weight. But the most interesting part of Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead is how he – and the truck driver he meets and gets started juicing – are able to go off their medications entirely. They heal themselves through nutrition and exercise alone!

Both men’s juice fasts are doctor-supervised, and the morbidly obese truck driver ended up losing 91 pounds in 60 days. That’s a very long fast, but even if you want to try a shorter fast, you can accomplish a lot. After just 10 days, he had lost 30 pounds. Of course, if you’re within a relatively healthy weight range already, you may not see such dramatic results – which is a good thing.

Whether or not you want to commit to a life of raw plant-based foods and juice, this is a fascinating film that shows us just how much power we have over our health and wellness. And – it’s inspiring. The sales of the Breville juicer Cross uses went sky high after this movie came out!

3 Things You Should Know About Juice Fasts

  1. The first few days of a juice fast are tough, especially when your social life revolves around eating. It can feel very isolating. But once you blast through the first few days, your energy increases and you start to look and feel better than ever. I’d say that’s worth it, wouldn’t you?
  2. Liquids are more rapidly absorbed than whole foods, which means the micro-nutrients in the juiced vegetables and fruits are more readily available for the body to use.
  3. Forget the juice at the grocery store – by the time it reaches the shelves, it’s been so processed that it’s practically sugar water.

Curious? Try a 3-day juice cleanse for just $195. We do the hard work (and the cleanup) for you.

“But wait! I’ll gain it all back in a week!”

One of the key facts about juice cleanses and fasts that don’t get as much press is the issue of re-bounding. You know how it goes – you start a diet, or one of those “fat flushes,” and you lose a little weight, but once the diet ends you gain the weight back. When you fast on micro-nutrient-rich fruits, vegetables, nuts and beans for a week, your brain chemistry that craves all those bad-for-you foods changes. You’ll find yourself able to control cravings better than you ever have before for long-lasting results. Just don’t spike your blood sugar with a celebratory donut, okay?

Sweet and Tangy Breakfast Juice Recipe (in case you bought that Breville juicer!)

  • 1 Granny Smith apple
  • 2 celery sticks
  • 2 inches fresh ginger root
  • 1/2 bunch parsley
  • a squeeze of lemon juice