Maybe you’ve watched Fat Sick and Nearly Dead. Or heard a miracle story about how juicing saved a terminally-ill cancer patient. Or just walked into any local health food grocery. Chances are nowadays, you’ve heard about juicing.

Currently, one of the most popular fitness fads; its very easy to be tempted by the alleged benefits of juicing. But what exactly is juicing?

Juicing is actually the process of extracting the liquid from fresh fruits and vegetables with high nutrient values.What’s left is an energy-packed vitamin and mineral liquid that can be very good for you. 

Since many fruits and vegetables offer several healing and anti-inflammatory properties; juicing has claimed it can reduce the risk of cancer, remove toxins, aid weight loss and help with digestion.

This is why juice detox diets have gained popularity during the past few years. They are toted as a possible way to remove toxins and get your body working better.

Detoxing (also known as cleansing) describes a brief time period in which the digestive system is given a break from solid foods. During this time, it’s claimed that your body is easily able to expel toxins and metabolic waste. 

According to many juice websites, this time of healing and recharging allows you to make the distinction between what your body needs to thrive and what it wants due to food addictions and cravings. What is true is that having that awareness is essential to making healthy changes in your lifestyle and diet.

Juicing can be great for people with certain health conditions or digestive problems. But is it appropriate for active individuals who enjoy working out daily?

Juicing does not necessarily provide your body with the extra nutrients it needs to produce energy for exercise. So if you are planning on completing a cleanse; make sure to do it on a days where you don’t have intense workouts scheduled.

Also know the side effects associated with juicing are a bit unpleasant sounding — headaches, moodiness, restlessness, insomnia, foggy brain and a few extra trips to the bathroom.

Juicing won’t be a cure-all for your weight-loss journey. You’ll more then likely gain the weight back when you return to your old eating habits. Even if you eat healthier than you did before the diet, just going back to solid foods will add calories. 

So be realistic. Juice detoxes are a great way to maybe reset your metabolic system (Though there is no research provided to support this). But there’s no quick way to lose pounds and keep them off. You have to be committed to eating better in the long term.

Eating fresh fruits and vegetables will provide the exact same benefits of juicing. In fact, no research supports the proposition that juicing is better than eating whole foods.

However, drinking a green juice loaded with five servings of vegetables is a lot more convenient for today’s busy lifestyle. So adding a nutrient-rich juice into your daily diet can be great supplement to make sure you are eating the FDA-recommended serving of fruits and vegetables.Just make sure you are getting the right nutrients when you select a juice. 

Look for a mix of fruits and vegetables and avoid solid fruit juices. If you overload the blender with fruit, your juice will be solid sugar. This can work against your weight loss goals and increase insulin production, which is a risk factor for diabetes.

Want to make your own? Add green apples or a splash of fruit juice to vegetable juice to improve the taste. Or mix blueberries in with kale. You can also add fish or flaxseed oil for omega-3 fatty acids.

Looking for a great Juice Bar to try? Try our friends, Raw Organic Juice Bar on Fyre and Dobson Road in Chandler. With fresh made-to-order juices, smoothies and meal replacements drinks; they offer a healthy all-organic approach to juices. They also work with nutrionists to make sure each drink has the right blend of ingredients to provide healing benefits to your body. They even offer whole raw-food cleanses too!