People juice fast for a number of different reasons, including weight loss, an energy boost or detox. While you may be feeling rundown and a bit heavy during your pregnancy, it is not the time to start a juice fast. Your diet needs to be filled with enough nutrients to support not only your health, but your growing baby's as well.
About Juice Fasting
A juice fast is considered a fad diet, according to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, and is typically used for weight loss. Weight loss is not recommended during pregnancy, says the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. On a juice fast, you eliminate solid food from your diet and get all of your nutrition from fruit and vegetable juice. The length of the diet varies: it can last a single day, a few days or several weeks.
Diet and adequate weight gain both factor into a healthy pregnancy. When you're pregnant, you need to make sure you eat enough calories to support a healthy weight gain and adequate baby growth, which ranges from 2,200 calories to 2,800 calories, according to the AND. In addition to getting enough calories, you also need to make sure you eat a variety of foods from all of the food groups to get the nutrients both you and your baby need. That means not only fruits and veggies, but grains; lean sources of protein such as poultry, tofu and beans; and low-fat or nonfat dairy.
Pregnancy and Juice Fasting
A juice fast is considered a starvation diet, according to UPMC. Calories for the fast may vary depending on juice choice; they may be as low as 1,000 calories a day, which is not enough for a pregnant woman. Additionally, the diet eliminates most food groups, making it very difficult for you to get all the vitamins and minerals you need to support a healthy pregnancy. As a severely low-calorie diet, a juice fast may also make you feel more tired and cause dizziness.
Healthy Juicing While Pregnant
You can include fruit and vegetable juice as part of your healthy eating plan. However, you do need to be careful about the type of juice you drink. Pregnant women are at a higher risk of foodborne illness and should only drink juice that has been pasteurized, which means heated to kill any harmful bacteria, recommends the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. You can find pasteurized juice in the refrigerated or frozen section of a grocery store, so that means no fresh juice from your local farmer's market or juice bar.
- Today's Dietitian: Diet and Detoxification
- University of Pittsburgh Medical Center: Fad Diets
- Huffington Post: Do Juice Cleanses Work? 10 Truths About the Fad
- Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Healthy Weight During Pregnancy
- Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Eating Right During Pregnancy
- U.S. Food and Drug Administration: Food Safety for Moms-to-Be: Safe Eats -- Fruits, Veggies and Juices