Dental trend spotlight: Juice cleanses

Are you considering detoxing with a juice cleanse after all those holiday sweets? If you are, you might want to think twice before starting.

The idea behind a juice cleanse is that you collect toxins like chemicals and bacteria from the food and drinks you consume along with the air you breathe. This buildup is thought to cause health issues such as headaches, asthma, arthritis and more. Juice cleanses temporarily replace regular diets with fruit and veggie juices with the intention of flushing out toxins. Advocates claim they help organs remove toxins more quickly. They point to benefits such as increased energy, reduced appetite, rehydration and weight loss.

Many health experts, though, aren’t convinced. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health says there’s no data to suggest cleanses remove toxins or improve health.

In fact, because they eliminate key nutrients, juice cleanses actually cause issues such as blood sugar fluctuations, inability to concentrate, low blood pressure and fatigue, among others.

When it comes to oral health, juice cleanses do more harm than good. While fruits have nutritional benefits, they also contain a high level of natural sugars. During a cleanse, all that sugar can damage teeth. By drinking juice throughout the day, you increase your mouth’s exposure. And because you aren’t eating solid foods, sugar isn’t being washed away by regular chewing. Further, cleanses with citrus fruits are acidic and can erode enamel and increase tooth sensitivity.

Our verdict: For the sake of your smile (not to mention your health), say no to juice cleanses. We recommend eating a well-balanced diet to keep your wellness in check.