Why I’m not Against all Cleanses: Reason #1

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Let me preface this by saying that juice cleanses are NOT recommended by dietitians and that they will NOT help you lose real weight or make you “skinny.” You might lose a couple pounds of water weight, but as soon as you eat again, that’ll change. That being said, I am an advocate for cleanses (well, obviously, I make my own and sell it). Here’s one of the few reasons why.

No matter how healthy you are, your body takes in a lot of crap. Everyone has their moments and eats junk now and then, healthy packaged foods are still packaged foods, and even if you are 100% clean eating natural foods, you’re still breathing. As long as you’re breathing, you’re building up yucky free radicals in the body.

Oxygen causes the buildup of free radicals. This is a wholeee long process that takes place in the mitochondria (oh yea, remember high school bio?) that I cannot wait to have the time to write about in an easy-to-understand way. (Look out for that post later this month!) In the meantime, basically, oxygen → free radicals → aging, cancer and other diseases, slower metabolism…the list goes on. If the human body were a bicycle, oxygen is rust.

So, before I get too off-track, let’s answer this: what does this have to do with cleanses?

Well, antioxidants are pretty much free radical killers. You all know berries and other foods have antioxidants, but I bet you didn’t know that your body naturally makes antioxidants without food, called superoxide dismutases. But, the process of eating and metabolizing food turns off these little guys, which further adds to the free radicals running wild.

When you are on a cleanse, a juice one or a calorie restricted one, you give your body the chance to not only cleanse the liver and other metabolic organs, but more importantly, your body has the time to build up its natural antioxidants (primarily SOD2) to alleviate the buildup of free radicals. These natural antioxidants prevent aging, cancer, alzheimer’s, diabetes, and so many other diseases.

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I personally don’t like the idea of starvation and strict juice cleanses. That’s one thing I (and my clients) love about my cleanse: they are never hungry and you don’t have to give up eating food. My cleanse also pairs perfectly with Suja juice. Suja has their own line of cleanse juices that are so. freaking. delicious. I drink them even when I’m not cleansing. You can get Suja juices and have them delivered right to your door here.

If you don’t calorie restrict, I highly recommend a cleanse every month or few months. Not to lose weight, not to look thin, not to avoid dieting, but rather to build up the body’s natural defenses to fight disease and encourage healthy aging. You’ll thank me when you’re a healthy, active old lady!

If you’ve recently done my cleanse, I want to hear about how it went/how it’s going! A LOT of you tried a pre/post-Thanksgiving 4-day TSOH cleanse package and I would love it if you could share in the comments what you liked and disliked about it! If you haven’t tried my cleanse, have you ever tried juice cleanses? What do you love/hate about them?

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I have gotten a compliant about the validity of this post, which I want to be sure to address, especially if anyone else shares this particular reader’s issue. So, dear disgruntled health blogger:

While I appreciate your very passionate enthusiasm in TSOH, it is of utmost importance to me to write with integrity and openness. I would never recommend something to my readers that I have not thoroughly researched and do not 110% believe in. My aim is to explain these concepts in an approachable manner, but that does not discount their place in the world of dietetics and scientific research. To appease your needs and to further validate the hard science and honesty that makes my blog what it is, here are 20 of the many primary and secondary research sources that I learned this information from, which also includes Applied Physiology at USC.  Please, explore them at your own discretion.

Lots of love & no hard feelings,

Lisa <3

Hunt, Nicole D., Dong-Hoon Hyun, Joanne S. Allard, Robin K. Minor, Mark P. Mattson, Donald K. Ingram, and Rafael de Cabo. “Bioenergetics Of Aging And Calorie Restriction.” Aging Research Reviews 5.2 (2006): 125-143. Print.
Harman, D., 1956. Aging: a theory based on free radical and radiation chemistry. J. Gerontol. 11, 298–300.
Chance, B., Sies, H., Boveris, A., 1979. Hydroperoxide metabolism in mammalian organs. Physiol. Rev. 59, 527– 605.
Harman, D., 1972. The biologic clock: the mitochondria? J. Am. Geriatr. Soc. 20, 145–147.
Sohal, R.S., Sohal, B.H., Orr, W.C., 1995. Mitochondrial superoxide and hydrogen peroxide generation, protein oxidative damage, and longevity in different species of flies. Free Radic. Biol. Med. 19, 499–504.
Thannickal, V.J., Fanburg, B.L., 2000. Reactive oxygen species in cell signaling. Am. J. Physiol. Lung Cell. Mol. Physiol. 279, L1005–L1028.
Hagen, T.M., Yowe, D.L., Bartholomew, J.C., Wehr, C.M., Do, K.L., Park, J.Y., Ames, B.N., 1997. Mitochondrial decay in hepatocytes from old rats: membrane potential declines, heterogeneity and oxidants increase. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 94, 3064–3069.
Drew, B., Phaneuf, S., Dirks, A., Selman, C., Gredilla, R., Lezza, A., Barja, G., Leeuwenburgh, C., 2003. Effects of aging and caloric restriction on mitochondrial energy production in gastrocnemius muscle and heart. Am. J. Physiol. Regul. Integr. Comp. Physiol. 284, R474–R480.
Lee, C.M., Aspnes, L.E., Chung, S.S., Weindruch, R., Aiken, J.M., 1998. Influences of caloric restriction on age- associated skeletal muscle fiber characteristics and mitochondrial changes in rats and mice. Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci. 854, 182–191.
Muller-Hocker, J., Seibel, P., Schneiderbanger, K., Kadenbach, B., 1993. Different in situ hybridization patterns of mitochondrial DNA in cytochrome c oxidase-deficient extraocular muscle fibres in the elderly. Virchows Arch. A Pathol. Anat. Histopathol. 422, 7–15.
Wei, Y.H., Ma, Y.S., Lee, H.C., Lee, C.F., Lu, C.Y., 2001. Mitochondrial theory of aging matures—roles of mtDNA mutation and oxidative stress in human aging. Zhonghua. Yi. Xue. Za. Zhi. (Taipei) 64, 259–270.
Bevilacqua, L., Ramsey, J.J., Hagopian, K., Weindruch, R., Harper, M.E., 2005. Long-term caloric restriction increases UCP3 content but decreases proton leak and reactive oxygen species production in rat skeletal muscle mitochondria. Am. J. Physiol. Endocrinol. Metab. 289, E429–E438.
Gredilla, R., Sanz, A., Lopez-Torres, M., Barja, G., 2001. Caloric restriction decreases mitochondrial free radical generation at complex I and lowers oxidative damage to mitochondrial DNA in the rat heart. FASEB J. 15, 1589–1591.
Lambert, A.J., Merry, B.J., 2004. Effect of caloric restriction on mitochondrial reactive oxygen species production and bioenergetics: reversal by insulin. Am. J. Physiol. Regul. Integr. Comp. Physiol. 286, R71–R79.
Lopez-Torres, M., Gredilla, R., Sanz, A., Barja, G., 2002. Influence of aging and long-term caloric restriction on oxygen radical generation and oxidative DNA damage in rat liver mitochondria. Free Radic. Biol. Med. 32, 882–889.
Cohen, H.Y., Miller, C., Bitterman, K.J., Wall, N.R., Hekking, B., Kessler, B., Howitz, K.T., Gorospe, M., de Cabo, R., Sinclair, D.A., 2004. Calorie restriction promotes mammalian cell survival by inducing the SIRT1 deacetylase. Science 305, 390–392.
Kaeberlein, M., McVey, M., Guarente, L., 1999. The SIR2/3/4 complex and SIR2 alone promote longevity in Saccharomyces cerevisiae by two different mechanisms. Genes Dev. 13, 2570–2580.
Harper, M.E., Monemdjou, S., Ramsey, J.J., Weindruch, R., 1998. Age-related increase in mitochondrial proton leak and decrease in ATP turnover reactions in mouse hepatocytes. Am. J. Physiol. 275, E197–E206.
McCay, C.M., Crowell, M.F., Maynard, L.A., 1989. The effect of retarded growth upon the length of life span and upon the ultimate body size. Nutrition 5, 155–171.
Sohal, R.S., Weindruch, R., 1996. Oxidative stress, caloric restriction, and aging. Science 273, 59–63.
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4 Responses to Why I’m not Against all Cleanses: Reason #1

  1. Gorijana says:

    Your juice cleanse was awesome girly! I ended up doing it for 5 days instead of 3 cuz it was easy and yummy! Don’t let the haters bring you down ;) ;)

  2. Leslie says:

    I just finished Lisa’s Starter Cleanse!!! It rocked. My fav smoothie on it was The Staple. + also the one with cinnamon and apples lol. The only thing I didn’t like about it was one of the mocktails, the coconut water+chia seed one, I forget the name. The homemade salad dressings were bomb.com I had a lot more energy on it and still do after it, and I crave more healthy food now too!!! Thanks Lisa!

  3. biomedical enginerd says:

    Just had so many flashbacks to BISC 330. Hahahaha I love it. Superoxide Dehydrogenase right? Or is my memory being radically ripped away??

    • Lisa says:

      haha no you’re right! there are lots of different variations, but as long as it starts with “superoxide” you’re probably in the clear ;)

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