Juice diets in Dubai
Is a juice-only diet the best way to slim down? Discuss this article
- Picture 1 of 2
Every year in Dubai, slimming and fever starts to take hold as the weather cools and the festive season approaches. Some expats are determined to go home for the holidays looking more slender than when they arrived, while others staying in the city aim to squeeze into a designer outfit for a seasonal party. As a result, it’s not only exercise regimes that increase in popularity: diets come under scrutiny too. Some opt for a total overhaul of their eating habits, while others plump for every nutritionist’s nightmare: the crash/starvation diet (we’ve all been there).
But what about the classic juice cleanse or ‘liquid fast’? This involves drinking only fruit and vegetable juice for a set period: claimed benefits range from aiding weight loss to eliminating toxins from the body, while some even promote themselves as an alternative medicine. Several local companies, including Café Baroque and Detox Delight, now deliver juices to your door, with many are touting the health and weight-loss benefits. But do juice diets work, and are they any good for you? We asked two Dubai-based nutritionists to share their views.
For (in some cases)
Kaya Peters, whole food nutritionist and holistic health practitioner
‘While juice detoxes can be detrimental for some people, they can be very good for others. For those who live an extremely toxic lifestyle, with an abundance of refined products, intoxicants, sugars, and so on, a juice diet can be very helpful, especially if they suffer from syndromes that traditional Chinese medicine classifies as “liver stagnation” or “heat”.
‘Juices are detoxifying, and will help you lose weight very quickly, although the weight usually returns straight after returning to normal eating.
‘[These programmes] suit people with a robust constitution, congested livers, a history of substance abuse and overeating of heavy, greasy foods. People who have unstable mental conditions could possibly benefit from a juice fast, mainly because of the so-called spiritual aspect: not eating for several days can help you to turn all your senses inwards and focus on the bigger meaning of life. This can be a powerful experience.
‘Detoxing can definitely be beneficial, although I still believe a holistic approach is much more effective in the long run. We need to be educated about proper nutrition, exercise and taking care of ourselves in better, gentler ways.’
Consultations from Dhs290. Various locations, www.allroundhealthforlife.com (050 212 5878).
Against (in all cases)
Allison van Camp, nutrition consultant
‘I don’t recommend juice fasts for anyone – I think they are at best unnecessary, and at worst potentially dangerous. It’s a romantic notion that if you drink just fresh juice, your cells will start to regenerate, weight will drop off and your body will expel lurking toxins. Based on a lack of scientific evidence, and what I know of the human body, I find it hard to believe. The body is already designed to excrete toxins, neutralising or eliminating them using the liver, kidneys, colon, lymph system and skin.
‘If you normally eat junk every day, you’ll probably see some benefits from a juice fast, but generally this type of dieting is little better than other fad diets. Consuming fresh fruits and vegetables alone is detoxifying, and the fibre of whole plant foods plays an incredibly important role – but when you juice a plant, you eliminate the fibre.
‘As far as weight loss goes, this isn’t exactly rocket science. It’s hard to drink all your energy needs in the form of juice. One cup of orange juice contains about 120 calories, so you would need to drink 16 cups a day to reach 2,000 calories [the recommended daily amount for an average adult woman]. Based on that, it’s no surprise that many will lose weight on a juice fast, but whether that weight will stay off is another question. If a person returns to their normal eating habits afterwards, then the answer is no.’
Consultations from Dhs300. Various locations, www.nutrition-unlocked.com (056 136 6382).
The juice diet: our experience
We limited our diet to juice for three days: here’s what happened
Day 1: The first day on Café Baroque’s three-day juice cleanse starts well: the breakfast smoothie is refreshing and tangy. By 4.30pm, however, we’re feeling lightheaded and pretty weak as we head off to try a CrossFit session.
Day 2: We suffer from heartburn all morning, followed by headaches all afternoon. We’re told this is the toughest day, but once we’ve got through it, apparently day three will be a breeze. During the afternoon, we crack and eat a bag of nuts.
Day 3: Less than three full days in and we’re already sick of the once enjoyable and refreshing juices, and have found it hard to concentrate on work in the mornings without the help of coffee and solid food. All the drinks are quite sweet, and we’re soon craving savoury treats. Unable to face any more juice, we skip the final two drinks of the day and stick to hot water and lemon instead.
We tried Café Broque’s cleanse, which costs Dhs400 for three days. Murjan 5, JBR (055 754 9012).
Time Out Dubai,
- Alternative health(19)
- Beauty and hair salons(20)
- Beauty clinics(8)
- Gym & health clubs(120)
- Health psychology(3)
- Image consultants(4)
- Medi spas(19)
- Nail salons(35)
- Plastic surgeons(11)
- Feng shui(4)
- Hair cuts & styling(30)
- Life coaching(14)
- Manicure & pedicure(38)
- Osteopathy and physical therapy(4)
- Personal training(10)
- Yoga, Pilates & meditation(25)
- Al Quoz(6)
- Arabian Ranches(1)
- Bur Dubai(27)
- Business Bay(2)
- Discovery Gardens(2)
- Downtown Dubai(48)
- Dubai Internet City(2)
- Dubai Marina(69)
- Dubai Media City(20)
- Emirates Hills(14)
- Festival City(16)
- Green Community(1)
- International City(2)
- Jebel Ali(8)
- Jumeirah Lakes Towers(16)
- Knowledge Village(10)
- Motor City(1)
- Oud Metha(41)
- Palm Jumeirah(14)
- Sheikh Zayed Road(45)
- The Gardens(16)
- The Greens(1)
- Umm Suqeim(10)
Most viewed outletsAll outlets
Our favourite features
An essential guide to renting in Dubai Beat price hikes, pick the right area, and know your rights
How to get a pay rise 20 expert tips to bag more cash from your boss
30 top outdoor bars in Dubai As the temperatures cool we round up the best places to drink outside in...
26 wet and wild watersports in Dubai Try kneeboarding, take a frantic ride or go down the world's largest wat...
20 best music movies ever The best music docus, star biopics and concert films ever committed to c...
Dubai: BBQ City How and where to barbecue, and restaurants to dine with the pros
10 Downtown bars and clubs to try True to its name, some of the city’s classiest bars are found in Downt...
Where do chefs eat in Dubai? Celeb chefs and local culinary heroes on where they REALLY dine
18 blow out spa treatments in Dubai Splash out with these once-in-a-lifetime spa packages
Where to watch the Premiership The best spots to catch the new Premier League season
Dubai’s best breakfasts We’ve been rising early to find the best meals to start the day
11 to try: Dubai museum guide The emirate's best museums and sights rated
Top dim sum restaurants in Dubai Recommended restaurants to sample the Chinese dining tradition
83 ways to save money in Dubai Dubai’s experts in cost efficient living share their tips
Dubai's best takeaways Indian, Chinese, Arabic, pizza and more of the best food home delivery