Over the past decade books, celebrities and nutritionists have all promoted juice detoxes but there remains a divide in the wellness community about their pros and cons.

One thing for sure is that a juice detox that goes beyond a day or two takes commitment, steely determination and some safety guidelines.

Preparing for a juice detox is relatively simple. You do not need lengthy shopping lists of hard-to-source ingredients, just a wide variety of fresh fruit, vegetables and a decent blender.

One of the reasons juice detoxing appeals to many is because blended fruit and vegetables are an easy way to consume a lot of nutrient-rich, dense ingredients very quickly and easily. Put simply, it is easier to drink them, than eat them.

Protein, fibre and fat – all essential for a healthy body – are things to think about. These can all be added in different ways.

Flax seeds, chia seeds and rolled oats work well in smoothies and provide fibre that will help you feel full for longer and will help to ward off hunger pangs.

Coconut oil is what nutritionists call a ‘medium chain fatty acid’, it not only adds a tropical taste to smoothies and juices, but it also has many antioxidant properties and being naturally decadent, it is good at quenching cravings and therefore reduced food intake.

Almond milk, while it does not have as much protein and calcium as dairy milk, it is rich in vitamin E and fibre.

Almonds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds and dates sprinkled on top of smoothies, or mixed in, all help to add texture and variety to smoothies and juices.

It is really important to blend your own juices, as only freshly made juices contain all the vital vitamins and nutrients that you need to detox successfully. There’s no room for the pasteurized juices that supermarkets sell. Pasteurised juices contain stabilisers – chemicals -which stop the juice from clumping together and which falsely make it taste fresh.

There are some other health considerations too. Another reason why packaged juices are pasteurised is to kill bacteria which can live on raw foodstuffs. It’s important to make the juice detox drinks fresh, and to drink them right away, otherwise harmful organisms can develop.

Lastly, only buy organic fruit and vegetables if you choose a juice detox, as you do not want to drink pesticides and fertilisers that have been sprayed on them.

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