Juice 'cleanses' are a myth. The concept of cleansing the body of toxins and buildup from poor diet is a far more complex process than simply spending a week fasting on juices. In fact, this really isn't a "process" or a diet, it's a way of living. Our bodies are constantly being bombarded with enemy particles: pollution, heavy metals building up in the blood, absorbed from food and from the air via the lungs, refined sugars and trans and saturated fats, creating a hostile environment creating for sluggish and inefficient metabolic processes.
So to cleanse the body with a week of juice dieting is a very limited approach to well-being. But integrating juices into your daily routine and sustaining this practice, along with healthy eating, can make a big difference in your health. But with any "holistic" treatment approach, the results can sometimes take a few weeks to really show. But the effects are noticeable (1) (2):
The reason juicing is so effective is because it offers an extremely concentrated and easily absorbable doses of vitamins and enzymes that have not been destroyed by the cooking process. You are able to get the majority of the available vitamins and minerals from a large quantity of vegetables and fruits in a drinkable glass (minus the fibre, which is why you should turn juicing scraps into cakes; like carrot, beet, spinach cakes) Enzymes found in raw fruits and vegetables play an important role in metabolic processes and energy conservation.
With my condition, Ehlers Danlos Syndrome and my coexisting syndromes of POTS (Dysautonomia) and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and more, juicing is essential for me. Because of my chronic state of exhaustion, the concentrated juices offer an easy way to absorb nutrients without putting more strain on my body or digestive system. And because I have absorption issues as well due to the hyper elasticity of my connective tissue, juicing helps ensure I get the extra load of vitamins and minerals I need, along with reduced inflammation, and more energy. There are many that believe the symptoms of this condition (and many other chronic illnesses) can be relieved with food healing, and in a way I'm only just beginning to explore this terrain. And I'll be documenting everything I can here and on @GourmandeSante.
One of my favourite things to do with juices is to create elixirs. In addition to creating larger quantities of juices with water-based vegetables like cucumber, celery and carrots, I like to create hyper-concentrated health shots with ginger, bee pollen, spirulina and other loaded ingredients when the body needs an extra kick of health. Here is a list of some of my favourite recipes, each holding a different quantity of vitamins and minerals which target different body systems depending. I try to curate my juicing to target wherever I am feeling "weak" and in need of extra raw-food assistance at a given time.
Ginger Shot: Ginger root about the size of your hand (X2 if you want to make a few shots) + 1 apple
Green Boost: 1/2 cucumber, 4 handfuls of spinach + 1 tablespoon spirulina powder
Cumin Elixir: 2 oranges, 2 tablespoons Turmeric + 1 teaspoon black pepper powder
Antioxidant Hormone Balance Boost: 1/2 cup pomegranate juice, handful of blueberries + 1/2 tablespoon Maca powder
Aloe Flush: 1 aloe leaf (1/4 cup aloe juice) + 1 lemon
Immune Boost: 2 clementine + 2 carrots + 1/2 teaspoon zinc powder
Liver Health Elixir: 2 beets + 1 tablespoon turmeric powder + handful of spinach + 1 Apple
Hangover Cure: 1/2 cup coconut water + 1 teaspoon sea salt + 2 beets + 1 celery branch + 1 handful spinach
Headache Reliever: 3 beets + 1 green apple + 1 cucumber + bushel of watercress + 1 lemon
Strawberry+Chocolate Stress Relieving smoothie juice: 3 celery branches + handful of strawberries + 1 banana + green tea powder + 1 tablespoon raw cacao powder