Have a happy Juice Detox • Cat Morley

If you've been mistreating your body recently with food, alcohol or stress, then it might be the perfect time to reset your body with juice detox.

I've wanted to try juice detoxing for a long time and finally decided to bite the bullet and give it a go last week. There are lots claims for why juicing is good for you (from ridding the body of toxins to weight loss) but the attraction for me was being able to get my 5-a-day in one glass.

It's been an interesting experiment with both motivating bursts of energy and sleepy low points. One of the most fascinating things has been letting my body become truly hungry and feeling how it responds to the juice with a boost of energy. Another interesting aspect is discovering which food or drink you crave while you're juicing, making you think twice about having them again after the detox.

I'd suggest doing a lot of research and reading before attempting a detox yourself and make sure to consult a doctor if you've got any worries over your health. But, based on my experience (and mistakes), here are my tips for making sure you're detox is a success:

1. Clear your schedule

It's good to face the fact that you're unlikely to get as much done as you're usual caffeine filled self, so pick a week when you don't have a lot on and there's no looming deadlines, dinners with friends, or boozy nights out planned. Weekends tend to be the toughest time, so I'd suggest starting on a Monday so you can use the motivation built up through the week to keep you strong at the weekend.

2. Plan your recipes

Planning which juices you want to make at the start of the day saves so much time and ensures you're mixing ingredient to get your 5-a-day. Take post-its for each of the recipes you want to try and note down the ingredients for each. Pick the ones you'd like to try throughout the day for breakfast, lunch, dinner etc. Later, when you're lacking energy, you'll know exactly what to make and get your juice fix even faster.

3. Stock up

Being prepared eliminates any excuses not to see the detox out. Go shopping and stock up on all the fruits and vegetables you love. Treat yourself to an insulated plastic cup with a straw and fill the freezer with lots of lots of ice. Everything tastes better with ice!

3. Juice to suit your mood

If you're not a huge fan of fruit and vegetables, then I'd recommend sticking to the ones you like and are already familiar with in the first few days. Start with an apple or carrot base, as these work well with most other fruit and vegetables, and will give your juice a good taste to build from. As the week goes on, feel free to get more adventurous and experiment with new fruits and vegetables you've never tried. It's the perfect way to sneak ingredients that you're not too found of in to your diet.

4. Clean your juicer

Juicers can be annoying to clean with lots of contraptions that get very sticky and messy as you juice. Even though it can be a pain, make sure to clean your juicer straight away. The pulp will rinse and wipe off easily while it's fresh but if you leave it to dry, you'll have to scrub and scrub to get it off. Also, there's nothing worse than fruit flies buzzing around your kitchen. It's also a good idea to keep your fruit where you can see it. If it's out of site, you're likely to forget about it until it's gone bad.

5. Hang in there

Though you'll likely get food cravings and have really exhausting low points, the most important thing is that you stick with it. View it as an experiment and challenge yourself. You won't feel the benefits until later in the week but when you're finished, you'll be able to resist all the horrible junk food you wanted in the first place.

I'm feeling great after my detox and plan to keep juicing daily as part of my normal diet. I would say that the best thing about the detox is that it's a great way to wean yourself off addictive junk food while eating lots of fruit and vegetables quickly and easily - even the ones you don't like!

Make sure to check with your doctor before attempting a juice detox and get in touch if you have any questions.

Check out these links for more info on juicing: