Learn why to juice cleanse for endometriosis. Endometriosis can cause digestive issues such as endo belly, but can juice cleansing help? While juice cleanses are one of the most popular and growing health trends, research shows some interesting benefits for the gut microbiota.
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Can Juice Cleansing Help Manage Endometriosis?
I do not know if juice cleansing is the best option for every person’s situation, but I will share my own experience juice cleansing as well as why I believe juice cleansing can be really helpful for endo (and endo belly).
You can check out my post on what exactly endo belly is if you need some more info on that.
I first came across juicing back when I relied heavily on the some of the research that supported it from an anti-cancer point of view. In part, it was a way to help infuse the body with high doses of vitamins and minerals without overly taxing the digestive system. Back then, I mega juiced on carrots all day, everyday for close to a year. I wish I had a picture, because I did turn ever so slightly orange, and my skin was fully protected from the sun even on a float trip (no sunburn that year).
However, I don’t recommend that approach at all. It’s not like I wasn’t eating full meals, because I was not using juicing as meal replacements, but I now believe in a more moderate approach.
Negatives to Juicing (or juicing incorrectly):
- Cold: Too much “cold” can impede digestion and may not be appropriate for some women with endometriosis.
- Thyroid concerns: Some vegetables can tax the thyroid.
- Meal spacing: digestive tract may need breaks between meals. Eating three meals each day plus juicing in between can still be fairly busy-making.
- Sugar spike: Juicing can cause a sugar spike. This can be especially harmful for women with insulin resistance, PCOS, or infertility.
- Oxalates: oxalates, compounds found in raw leafy greens such as spinach and kale, can build up in the body when eaten raw and create digestive issues. Vegetables with oxalates need to be gently steamed to help reduce the amount of this compound before juicing.
So, if you are juicing a lot of fruits without making sure you are eating a balanced diet, your metabolism can struggle.
It’s best to work with someone knowledgeable about what it is your body is dealing with, even if that’s an integrative care doctor or your local acupuncturist. Or, do extensive research for yourself and your unique health considerations.
I’m all for massive action and extremes, so long as you know you’re heading in the right direction after all.
I had given up juicing because it had become a bit cumbersome (and I really love smoothies) but after a recent bout with a nasty virus, I’m juicing to help my immune system. After three days of juicing first thing in the morning, about 30 minutes before breakfast, I can say that I found a good way to increase nutrition without breaking the bank or introducing too much “cold.”
I already eat a lot of vegetables (usually 30 plant based foods a week), but with being right in the heat of the holidays, I will admit my diet took a bit of a plunge into sugar land more than usual. Check out breaking the sugar habit if yours has, too.
Research on a Juice Cleanse
I read other blogs as I am sure you do as well. I actually love looking at juice recipes on Pinterest and reading how a particular juice cleanse helped someone fight belly fat, bloating or weight gain. But the thing that confronts me about so many of those posts is that they’re just opinion.
I don’t want to practice something that has no basis at all.
Where’s the research?
So, I looked to 1) how I felt juicing again and 2) what the research literature had to say about vegetable juice cleanses.
Here is what just some of the POSITIVE research shows:
- Changes in the microbiota as a result of consuming vegetables juices play an important role in weight loss, decrease in lipid oxidation, general well-being ratings, and an increase in “good gut bacteria” (Bacteroidetes and Cyanobacteria) and a decrease in “harmful gut bacteria” (Firmicutes and Proteobacteria) after just THREE DAYS.
- Fruit and vegetable juices were found to improve the antioxidant capacity and to prevent the oxidative damage in liver, brain and colon.
- Juice with lemon polyphenols (Citrus limon, or, lemon juice) was found (in rats) to have anti-aging effects on both phenotypes and the intestinal environment. (From Scientific Reports, March 6, 2019)
- You can check out the July 2012 Advances in Nutrition to see which vegetable and fruits for recommendations and nutritional profiles of the respective plant food.
- Juicing may help endometriosis weightloss.
- Juicing may help rebalance the gut microbiome and that may help endometriosis.
- Endometriosis is a chronic inflammatory condition similar to an auto-immune condition; consuming easyto-digest vital vitamins and minerals can help the malnourished endo body.
So according to a human study and animal study, positive changes were found in the microbiome, phenotypically and even impacting one’s mental state.
Now, this research is not exhaustive. While juicing can be extremely beneficial, blending your vegetables and especially fruits can help you still reap some of the benefits while getting your fiber content up. And if you decide to juice, some say it’s best to drink sweeter juices in the morning (turmeric-carrot-orange is a delicious blend) and green juices later in the day.
I personally am going to veer away from juices that have too much fruit because I can feely my blood sugar get a bit wonky. But I feel pretty good drinking a small green juice about 20-30 minutes before a meal. I would make sure it’s at least room temperature (and not too cold which can shock your system according to TCM) and sip it slowly.
My Personal Recommendations on Drinking Vegetable and Fruit Juices (RECAP):
- Juice greens with high water content, such as celery, romaine lettuce, green and red micro green lettuces, cucumber, green apple, cilantro, dandelion greens, etc.
- If you want to juice greens such as spinach, kale and chards, try to gently steam them first so that the oxalic acids dissipate (go away). Other foods with oxalates include cauliflower, broccoli and cabbage. These are best steamed and eaten whole or steamed and then juiced.
- Include ginger root, turmeric root, whole lemons, carrots, and/or a green apple
- If you want to try to juice sweeter fruits, ensure your blood sugar is stable and you aren’t experiencing infertility which can be highly impacted by unstable blood sugars or spikes in blood sugars. Maybe have a nutrition and balanced meal about 20 minutes afterwards that includes protein, fat and complex carbohydrates. See how you feel a few hours later.
- Tune in to how juicing makes you feel. There is some good research which supports the benefits including for the microbiota and helping good bacteria thrive but everyone is different.
- Juicing is helpful with an already healthy and balanced diet and as a way to include a diverse amount of vegetables.
Juice Cleanse Recipes
Here are some of my go-to juice recipes.
(I recommend organic when possible and washed well always).
- 1/2 lemon including peel
- 1/2 green apple
- 1 stalk celery
- 1 medium carrot
- 1/2 cucumber or 1 English cucumber
Beta Carotene Blast (warning, higher in sugar)
- 1/2 mandarin orange
- 2 medium carrots
- 1 inch of turmeric root
- 1 inch root of ginger (to taste, it can be strong when starting)
Metal Detox Juice
- 1 bunch cilantro (it’s a powerful flavor, but I personally feel great all day afterwards).
- 1/2 lime
- 1/2 lemon
- 2 medium carrots
- 1/2 green apple
- 1/2 cucumber or 1 small cucumber
My Favorite Juicing Products
I have used a Breville Juicer since I started, so I am recommending what I personally use.
I hope you consider juicing and give it a try! One of the great things about juicing is that is has kind of caught on mainstream so most large towns have juice shops where you can try different things and see if you like how it makes you feel and what your taste buds prefer before investing funds into a juicer.
I also recommend watching Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead about a guy named Joe Cross who began a daily juicing regime and not only lost weight, reversed his diabetes and other health conditions but saved his own life.
Wishing you light and life!