How much juice should I drink a day on a juice cleanse?

Juice cleanses have become increasingly popular as a way to detox, lose weight, and reset your health. During a juice cleanse, you temporarily eliminate solid foods from your diet and replace them with fresh vegetable and fruit juices. But with so many different juice cleanse programs available, how do you know how much juice you should actually be drinking each day?

What is a Juice Cleanse?

A juice cleanse typically lasts from 3 to 7 days and involves consuming anywhere from 4 to 6 freshly pressed vegetable and fruit juices per day, and no solid food. Some cleanse programs allow minimal snacks like raw fruits and vegetables as well.

There are a few main purported benefits of juice cleansing:

  • Detoxification – By abstaining from solid foods for a few days, you give your digestive system a rest and allow your body to expel toxins accumulated from foods and the environment.
  • Weight loss – Consuming juices that are low in fat and calories can create a calorie deficit that results in shedding a few pounds.
  • Increased vegetable and fruit intake – Juice cleanses allow you to easily consume multiple servings of veggies and fruits per day.
  • Reset your habits – Taking a break from unhealthy eating patterns can help you reevaluate your diet and reset your health.

However, there are also some potential downsides of prolonged juice fasting including nutrient deficiencies, blood sugar spikes and crashes, and loss of muscle mass.

Calorie Requirements During a Juice Cleanse

To determine how much juice you should drink each day of your cleanse, it’s helpful to consider calorie requirements. The average moderately active woman needs around 2,000 calories per day, while the average moderately active man needs around 2,500 calories per day.

Although temporary calorie restriction during cleanse programs is common, for most people it is not advisable to drop below 1,200 calories per day. Consuming less than that on a juice cleanse increases your risk of nutritional deficiencies, fatigue, and even brain fog.

Given that juices tend to range from 100 to 300 calories per serving, you’ll need multiple juices per day to meet the recommended minimum of 1,200 calories.

Common Juice Cleanse Programs

Some popular commercial juice cleanse programs provide anywhere from 4 to 6 juices per day. Here is an overview of the amount of juice provided in three top cleanse regimens:

Cleanse Program # Juices Per Day Approx. Total Calories
BluePrint Cleanse 6 1,200-1,400
Juice Press 5 1,200-1,500
Cooler Cleanse 6 1,200-1,400

As you can see, most programs provide at least 1,200 calories worth of juices per day to help prevent nutritional deficits and extreme hunger while cleansing.

Nutritional Content of Juices

In addition to the total calorie content, pay attention to the nutritional makeup of the juices you’ll be drinking on your cleanse.

While juices can pack in tons of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, some limitations include:

  • Fiber – Juicing strips away the fiber content from whole fruits and vegetables, which can slow digestion and help regulate blood sugar levels.
  • Fat – Fresh juices contain negligible amounts of fat needed to support hormone and brain health.
  • Protein – Vegetables and fruits are not significant sources of protein, which is essential for maintaining lean muscle mass while cleansing.

To help fill in these nutritional gaps, look for juice blends that contain nut milks, sprouted grains or legumes, healthy fats like coconut, avocado or flax oil, and plant-based protein powders.

Ideally, your juices should provide a balance of:

  • 45-65% vegetables like kale, celery, cucumber, carrots
  • 25-40% fruits like apples, lemon, ginger, berries
  • 10-30% extras like nut milk, protein powder, oils, and seeds

Sample 1-Day Juice Cleanse Plan

Here is an example of what a juice cleanse might look like in a day, providing around 1,300 nutrient-dense calories:

Juice Ingredients Calories
Green juice Cucumber, kale, parsley, celery, lemon, ginger 130
Berry juice Strawberries, blueberries, apple, coconut water 160
Carrot turmeric juice Carrots, orange, turmeric, coconut oil 240
Chlorophyll juice Spinach, pineapple, lime, spirulina 180
Vanilla almond milk Almond milk, banana, vanilla, almond butter, protein powder 260
Apple beet juice Apple, beet, celery 220
Evening tonic Tomato, cucumber, avocado, apple cider vinegar, lemon 110

This provides a balanced mix of green vegetable juices for vitamins and minerals, fruit juices for carbohydrates and antioxidants, plant-based proteins and fats, and low-sugar options in the evening to support restful sleep.

The Best Juices for Cleansing

Certain juices may be particularly beneficial to include on a juice cleanse.

Leafy green juices – Kale, spinach, swiss chard, and other greens provide antioxidants and phytonutrients that support the body’s detoxification systems.

Cruciferous juices – Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts contain glucosinolates that can help eliminate pollutants.

Citrus juices – Lemon, lime, grapefruit and orange juice contain cleansing properties and vitamin C to support immune function.

Beet juice – Beets contain betalains and phytonutrients that optimize the liver’s detoxification abilities.

Ginger juice – Ginger acts as an anti-inflammatory and can ease nausea associated with juice fasting.

Apple juices – Apples provide hydration and antioxidants to flush toxins from the system.

Chlorophyll juices – Chlorophyll from plants like spinach and parsley oxygenates the blood and promotes cleansing.

Creating your own juices allows you to customize your cleanse with the most cleansing ingredients for your needs.

Making Your Own Juices

While you can purchase pre-made juices for convenience, making your own allows you to control the ingredients and customize the nutrition. Here are some tips if juicing at home:

  • Use organic produce whenever possible to limit pesticide exposure.
  • Drink juices as soon as possible after making them to preserve nutrients.
  • Store juices in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 24-48 hours.
  • Add a spoonful or two of a healthy fat like avocado, coconut oil, or flax oil to each juice for essential fatty acids.
  • Consider adding protein powders or collagen peptides to provide amino acids.
  • Use a slow juicer rather than a centrifugal for less oxidation.
  • Save the leftover pulp from produce to use in recipes once your cleanse is over.

With a little planning, you can make DIY juices that meet all your nutritional needs on a cleanse.

Other Considerations

When undertaking a juice cleanse, there are a few other factors to keep in mind in addition to how much juice you should drink:

  • Individual needs – Consider any health conditions and adjust your cleanse accordingly. For example, those with diabetes or low blood sugar may need juices higher in fruit content.
  • Exercise – Light to moderate exercise can be continued, but intense workouts should be reduced during cleanse programs. Listen to your body.
  • Caffeine – Eliminate caffeine while cleansing to get the full detox benefits.
  • Supplements – Speak with your healthcare provider about continuing any necessary medications or supplements while juicing.
  • Duration – Don’t extend juice fasts for more than a few days at a time, as nutrients like protein, fat, and fiber will need to be reintroduced.

The Bottom Line

So how much juice should you drink per day on a juice cleanse? Most experts recommend consuming 4-6 freshly pressed juices daily, aiming for at least 1,200 calories but not dropping below this threshold. Pay attention to getting a balance of vegetables, fruits, proteins, healthy fats, and low sugar content.

Customize your juices to your tastes and nutritional needs. Be sure to avoid potential nutrient deficiencies or blood sugar imbalances by carefully planning the ingredients and portions. Keep other factors like exercise, medications, and cleanse duration in mind as well.

A temporary juice fast of 3-5 days can provide a nutritional reset. But be careful not to overdo it, and remember to transition back to a balanced diet including whole foods once your cleanse is over.

Drinking the optimal amount of fresh, raw juices while detoxing can help you safely cleanse and reset your health.

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