In the end, it's important to know that while juices themselves can be healthy, they're not nutritionally balanced and shouldn't be used as meal replacements. So, this year, skip the juice cleanse and enjoy whole fruits and veggies as a part of your meals and snacks, or blend them to make a delicious smoothie.
"The science of detoxifying is still being researched, so don't fall for the marketing ploys that juice cleansing companies are trying to sell you," says Beaver. "Instead, focus on eating whole foods, including veggies, fruits, beans, nuts and whole grains. The fiber from these foods is thought to help eliminate some toxins, while their phytochemicals may help promote the detoxification of carcinogens."
"One delicious way to get the potential benefits of juicing, plus the natural fiber from these foods, is to enjoy fruits and veggies in smoothie form," explains Beaver. "This is a great way to get in your recommended daily servings of fruits and veggies."
"Juice cleansing is a diet where a person almost exclusively drinks fruit and vegetable juices for as long as 10 days or as short as just a day or two," says Amanda Beaver, wellness dietitian at Houston Methodist. "While it might sound healthy, it's best to look at what the science says about juice cleanses before giving into the hype."
"More than likely, any weight that was lost will be regained shortly after solid foods are reintroduced," says Beaver, "with the potential added downsides of a slower metabolism and bone loss."
The positive side of juice cleansing is probably pretty obvious — you're consuming plenty of fruits and vegetables, which we know should make up half of our plate.
Beaver recommends trying to blend your favorite fruits and veggies with some Greek yogurt or soy milk for protein. For a green smoothie, pair kale or spinach with a frozen banana. For a beautiful pink smoothie, pair berries with a little bit of frozen cauliflower.