ARE JUICE CLEANSES GOOD FOR YOU? A NUTRITIONIST’S OPINION.
Stacy Kennedy, a senior nutritionist at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, is lead nutritionist for Reboot with Joe, a plan promoting weight loss through juicing.
What are the benefits of juicing?
It’s one of the tools in your toolbox, to increase the number of vegetables and plant-based foods you’re eating each day. It’s not the only way to do it, but it’s one of the options. Many people who are not fans of sitting down and eating a salad may prefer the texture or flavor of juice.
How about a juice detox or cleanse?
As a dietitian, I really don’t like the term “detox.” I don’t even like “cleanse.” They’re misleading; they make it sound magical. But consuming only juice for a very defined period of time might be good for some people.
Is there a downside to a juice cleanse?
The most important thing is that it’s not meant to be forever. The problem is all-or-nothing, black-and-white thinking. Only consuming juice every day for rest of your life isn’t healthy, but never drinking juice — maybe that’s not healthy either.
What kinds of juice are best?
You don’t want to drink one kind of juice all day long. It’s important to have a colorful variety of fruits and vegetables — a little fruit for flavor and nutrients, but proportionately more vegetables than fruit.
FAVORITE CONCOCTIONS OF JUICE LOVERS
“I enjoy beet-based juices, and a common recipe is beet, apple, lemon, and ginger. Or cucumber-based juices mixed with kale, spinach, apple, and lemon.”
Bryan Doo / head strength and conditioning coach, the Boston Celtics
“My favorite combination is usually green with lots of kale, then a mix of whatever is on hand (carrots, cucumbers, apples), and lots of lime. If you’re newer to juicing or wary of greens, you can make this recipe sweeter by using fewer greens and adding an extra apple. For me, the key is the lime — it adds such a nice zing. Lemon works, too. This juice in a juicer needs no added liquid. If you’re talking about smoothies, made in a blender, then my favorite includes greens, frozen banana, and soy/almond/rice milk, perhaps with a scoop of protein powder.”
Rebecca Pacheco / yoga teacher, author, Do Your Om Thing
“My favorite summer recipe is two oranges, four carrots, two apples, ginger, and then a little turmeric over a lot of ice. Sometimes I will add some water or coconut water.”
Diana Albrecht dances with the Boston Ballet.
“You can mix whatever produce you have left in the fridge and it will almost always taste delicious! I don’t usually use recipes, but my favorite ingredients in juices include apples, carrots, beets, ginger, cucumber, spinach, and fresh lemon or lime. I also like to add unflavored coconut water sometimes.”
Maggie Batista / bartender, Aquitaine Boston
“Juicing played a crucial role in a major weight loss I underwent back in my early 20s. My juicing habits change week to week, but my staple recipe is pretty simple. Kale, mint, pineapples, almonds, lime, water, and a pinch of Truvia. Earlier this morning I put together a new combo that was killer — beets, blueberries, apple, lemon, ice, and coconut water.”
Rafael Barbosa / director of operations, FiRE + iCE Restaurants and underFiRE Bar