It’s happened y’all. Celery juice has taken over the world.
Well, it’s taken over the social media world. Celery juice has exploded in popularity over the past few months, with big name celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Gwyneth Paltrow touting its benefits as a detox drink.
In this article, we’ll discuss the potential benefits of celery juice, drawbacks, and whether there is any science to back up this trendy green drink.
Why is everyone suddenly drinking celery juice?
Good question. Celery. Of all things?!
You can blame (or thank) a guy named Anthony William. Anthony is the best selling author of a variety of health books and a self-proclaimed Medical Medium. No, not the Long Island type! As described on his website, a medical medium is someone who has a “unique ability to converse with Spirit of Compassion.” He reports that this spiritual gift “provides him with extraordinarily accurate health information.”
Although celery juice has been around for a while, Anthony basically started the global phenomenon that is the celery juice movement. He recommends drinking 16 fluid ounces of straight celery juice on an empty stomach every day.
But, why? The Medical Medium states that celery juice has “an undiscovered cluster salt that stips down pathogens.” He also explains that celery juice revives liver cells and helps it flush out toxins.
Nutrition Content of Celery Juice
Typically, a “large bunch” of celery is required to make 16 fl oz of straight celery juice.
Estimating a bunch at 8 stalks, the nutrition of 16 fl oz of celery juice provides (1):
- Calories: 45 calories
- Carbs: 10 grams
- Fiber: 5 grams
- Protein: 2 grams
- Fat: < 1 gram
- Potassium: 18% of the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI)
- Folate: 29% of the RDI
- Vitamin A: 36% of the RDI
- Vitamin K: 104% of the RDI
As you can see, celery juice is mostly comprised of carbohydrates (with half derived from fiber). It is particularly rich in potassium, folate, vitamin A, and vitamin K.
Does celery juice help the liver “flush out toxins?”
The Medical Medium argues that celery juice revives liver cells and helps it flush out toxins. Is this legit?
One thing is true: the liver is your body’s garbage disposal and detox system rolled into one organ. Liver detox happens in two phases.
- Phase 1: enzymes turn toxins into water-soluble forms so your body can eliminate them in your fluids.
- Phase 2: the liver takes the water-soluble toxin from phase 1 and binds it with a compound to neutralize it for final excretion.
Does celery juice enhance any part of the liver detox process? Funny you should ask! Some research shows that celery actually SLOWS DOWN some of the enzymes in phase 1 of liver detox (2, 3).
There is no scientific evidence that celery juice “revives liver cells and helps it flush out toxins.” In fact, the small amount of research actually shows that it does the opposite!
Read more about liver health on our blog post about foods that support liver detox.
Benefits of Celery Juice
We now know that celery juice doesn’t detoxify our bodies. So, are there any health benefits to drinking celery juice every day?
Juicing, in general, is a way to get more veggies into your diet.
We all know that vegetables are good for us. They are rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that help to optimize our health. However, eating 5+ servings of veggies per day can seem like a daunting task. Research shows that it may take up to 9 different exposures to a new food before acquiring a taste for it (4). Juicing can act as a great method for incorporating more fresh produce into your diet each day.
Additionally, celery is particularly rich in important nutrients like vitamin A and vitamin K. Although true deficiencies in these vitamins are rare in developed countries, some studies report that the majority of Americans do not meet recommended daily intakes for vitamin A (5).
Veggie juice is better than sugar-sweetened beverages.
Up to 60 percent of Americans drink at least one sugar-sweetened beverage every day (6). This includes drinks like soda, juice, kool-aid, sweet tea, sports drinks, and sweetened coffee mixtures. The added calories and sugar in these beverages are extremely harmful and may increase the risk of unintentional weight gain or certain diseases, like type 2 diabetes (7). Replacing these sugary drinks with a veggie juice blend can definitely help support weight loss or overall health efforts!
Celery has healthful antioxidant properties.
Like most other vegetables, celery contains a significant amount of antioxidants. These are compounds that prevent cell damage caused by molecules called free radicals. Too many free radicals may eventually lead to various conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer (8, 9).
Now, this doesn’t mean that celery CURES cancer or prevents heart disease by itself. Rather, celery contains sources of antioxidants that may protect our cells from damage that otherwise may lead to these chronic diseases.
If celery juice isn’t a magic cure, why do some people feel better when they drink it?
While celery juice may not be a cure-all to human disease, many people report that they feel much better when drinking it every day. Why?
There are a few reasons
- Participant Bias. This is a common bias in scientific experiments. By implementing one healthy habit into your life every day, people are more likely to be conscious of their other lifestyle habits as well. Basically, people likely participate in additional healthy behaviors when drinking celery juice, which of course helps them feel much better!
- You’re drinking a vegetable. Veggies are healthy y’all, and we know this. While we have to admit that celery isn’t necessarily a “nutrient powerhouse” compared to other veggies, it still provides beneficial vitamins and minerals that you may not otherwise eat.
- The Placebo Effect. This is HUGE in research. Some studies show that placebo pills work the same or BETTER than the actual medicine. In fact, placebos may be up to 50 percent effective (10, 11, 12). It comes down to the power of your mind. If you think that you will feel enormously better, then you will.
Celery Juice: Ending Thoughts
If you feel amazing drinking celery juice every day, then great! There is no harm to incorporating this juice into your daily regimen. However, if you don’t drink celery juice or hate the taste, don’t worry. Like we mentioned above, celery juice is a veggie juice but it’s no magic cure by itself.
In the 131 Method, we believe in personalized nutrition. That means that some people may feel excellent eating one thing, while others may have the opposite reaction. It comes down to knowing your body, fueling it with REAL food, and forming multiple healthy habits every day that lead to a fulfilled and wholesome life.