Juicing involves extracting juices from fruits and vegetables for consumption. Juicing advocates say it is a healthy and convenient means to get the plentiful vitamins and minerals inherent in fruits and vegetables. If you're doing a juicing fast and consuming excessive amounts, however, there are some common symptoms associated with juicing to be aware of, especially if you suffer from diabetes or have a weak immune system.
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Juicing is the centerpiece of many diets that claim it allows the body to more easily absorb nutrients and promotes weight loss. While these claims are debatable, juicing does offer a way to get daily doses of fruits and vegetables in a convenient and concentrated package. A drawback to juicing is that in extracting the juice, you leave the pulp behind and, along with it, the nutritious fiber. Fiber offers several health benefits, including normalizing bowel movements and possibly lowering cholesterol. Moderate juicing is considered safe when used to supplement a healthy and balanced diet.
If you overuse juicing or consume too much of the same fruit or vegetable, your body can react with diarrhea. Some juicing advocates say this is part of the cleansing process that occurs as the juice helps the body detoxify; however, MayoClinic.com denounces the claim that juicing cleanses the body. It's important to drink plenty of fluids, since diarrhea can cause dehydration. If diarrhea is persistent, it is important to consult your doctor.
Symptoms Related to Excess Sugar
Vegetables and especially fruits contain a lot of natural sugars. When you juice, you consume more concentrated servings of the sugars in these foods than if you just ate them. This is most concerning for diabetics who must maintain adequate and moderate blood sugar levels. Hyperglycemia symptoms can include dehydration and more serious complications involving the kidneys and brain. Additionally, because juiced fruits and vegetables can contain surprisingly high amounts of sugar and high-calorie counts, overusing juicing may actually promote weight gain.
Increased Infection Risk
Fruit and vegetable juices you buy at the store undergo pasteurization to ensure consumer safety. Home-juiced products are more susceptible to bacterial growth, so it's important to drink what you juice right away and discard any leftovers. If you're doing a juicing fast, don't make large batches to save for later. For people with weakened immune systems, such as cancer patients, the chance for infection is even higher and more caution should be taken with juicing. Symptoms of infection can range from fever to inflammation.