We have all heard about juice diet plans. For some they are viewed as a miraculous natural healer that rid the body of toxins leaving the cleanser feeling rejuvenated. For others, they are a source of headaches and illness, or else just plainly overrated. One way of getting a lot more out of a juice cleanse is to prepare properly. Preparation has the potential to transform the way that your body reacts to the cleanse and also can give you some mental clarity that is needed to undertake a cleanse.
Before your cleanse it is necessary to modify your diet in the week before you start your juice cleanse. If it is not practical to do so all week, try to do so at least three days beforehand. Regardless of the exact details of the cleanse such as length or the types of juices you will be drinking, modifying your diet beforehand is crucial to the success of the cleanse. If you don’t take appropriate steps beforehand, you can become unwell once you begin the juice diet because of the severity of the change to your digestive system. This can cause headaches and flu-like symptoms as well as digestive problems.
What Can I Eat?
A vegetarian or vegan diet is recommended in the lead up to the cleanse. If you would like to continue eating meat then a small amount of organic turkey or chicken will be fine, as would plain fish. Avoid sushi as you could ingest trace chemicals, manmade toxins aren’t good in the build up to a juice diet due to the time it takes for them to be released from your body.
This can potentially be done gradually; for example, cutting sugar and dairy and alcohol one day then meat the next, so the jump doesn’t feel quite so big.
The Coffee Challenge
Those of us that drink coffee must take extra caution, particularly if you drink it every day and it is a routine habit. The caffeine that is in coffee is extremely addicted, caffeine is essentially a drug and very addictive so cutting down gradually is extremely important here. Stopping cold turkey on the day you begin the diet will result in the worst of headaches, and nobody wants that. The first day of the diet can be tough as it is, but of course worth it.
An Opportunity to Exercise
Doing a juice cleanse doesn’t mean you have to lie around on the sofa all day but you shouldn’t be undertaking intense physical exercise. The weights will have to wait. Plan ahead a light workout, or low intensity form of physical exercise. It could be an opportunity to try something new. Yoga (not hot yoga though) jogging, walking and pilates are all good ideas. Even if it is just walking a different route than you normally would, try to make your exercise a little interesting. Go easy on yourself though, you will be tired, but feel better for doing some light exercise.
The mental preparation for a juice diet is just as important as the physical. Take a check on yourself. Make sure it is the right time for you to be undertaking the juicing diet, that you aren’t going through a particularly emotional time or any huge transitions in your life. Ask for support from family and friends, who you know will be encouraging and accepting. Sometimes it is better not to tell a lot of people about the cleanse before you start it because everybody has an opinion or a story on the topic. Some of these may not be beneficial for you to hear, you want to be feeling positive before you start, not have doubts because of unappealing opinions.
Plan to Utilise your Time
The first step to this is thinking of what you want to gain from your cleanse? Ideally this should not just be weight loss focused. A juice cleanse is often marketed as a weight loss tool and while you most likely will lose weight, it is good to give it a deeper meaning that just weight loss. Think about what else it is that you want to gain. How will you know if the cleanse is successful or not? Do you need to heal in any way (change your thought patterns, recover from an illness, move on from a relationship?) Think of an intention for undertaking the cleanse and stick to it.
It is good to schedule in some free time each day that you are doing the cleanse. Quiet time is best; meditation, reading and writing and other introspective activities will help you to take care of yourself emotionally and mentally and get the best out of the juice cleanse.
Check with your GP
If you have any health problems it is best to check with your GP before you begin the juice cleanse because it may not be the best option for you. It is better to be safe rather than sorry. A juice diet plan is supposed to enhance your health and clarity, not make it worse.