According to a recent informal poll of our followers, we discovered that 64% of respondents believe celery juice has a higher nutritional value than many other healthy options out there.
But, where does this belief come from? After all, we’re talking about celery. Not some exotic superfood that was just discovered.
And yet, the celery juice explosion is very real and worth discussing because any food that gives you a nutritional advantage is worth adding to your diet — if it really backs up its claims.
There are many things about the human body that we still don’t understand, but a little sleuthing (and a good dose of science) can help us to see why the claims around this craze are a bust.
In this episode of That’s Healthy, Right?, we’ll look at the progenitor of the celery juice craze, his spurious health claims, and the real reason you’re seeing health benefits from drinking it.
tl/dr: Does Celery Juice Really Work?
If you’ve been following That’s Healthy, Right?, you know that we take tremendous pride in our in-depth, unbiased research. But, when it came to researching celery juice, we came away frustrated. Why? Because there is almost no published research that supports any of the claims that suggest celery juices works for many of the proposed health benefits. Celery juice has many antioxidants and it’s not bad, but it’s no different than drinking many other vegetable or fruit juices. And, in many ways, eating raw celery is likely to have more nutritional value than juicing the celery. Sadly, the celery juice diet is a big myth with no scientific backing.
Have a question you want to be considered for the show? To submit a question, email a voice recording that you can do here to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celery Juice: Are the Benefits Real? — UC Davis Health
Celery Juice Will Not Work Miracles, No Matter What You Read on Goop — The Washington Post
Detoxing is a Hoax — Vice
A Forensic Analysis of the Benefits of Lemon Water — That’s Healthy, Right?
The Body Cleanse: Does Juicing Really Work? — Born Fitness
Adam Bornstein: I wanted to open this episode with some fan mail because Patrick in Miami wrote me and asked, “Does anyone actually believe any of the myths you claim to solve on your show?”
Well Patrick, thank you for your support. To try and answer that question myself, when I came and found the topic that I wanted to discuss for this episode, I decided to ask the Instagram audience if they believed that celery juice had additional benefits compared to any other vegetable juice.
64% of people said yes. For that 64% of people, I’ve got a myth that I would like to bust for you, and that is that celery juice has additional health benefits that go beyond what you would see from any type of a normal vegetable juice, or even eating vegetables or fruits for that matter.
The celery juice explosion can … I can’t even believe I said “celery juice explosion” but this is the health world we live in. It can all be pointed to one guy in particular, and that is Anthony William, the man behind the celery juice craze.
A lot of people know Mr. William as the Medical Medium. Now before I go on, I believe there are a lot of things in the human body that happen that we do not yet understand, and science would back that up.
But the things that we do not understand, we can usually hypothesize are happening for a certain reason based on things within the body that we do understand. These are what hypotheses are.
I don’t need to go down a long-winded conversation, but things we don’t yet understand are proven out or explained by things that we do understand. And that’s really where the issues start with so many of the claims made about celery juice, which are quite elaborate.
Everything from weight loss, to killing bacteria and viruses, getting rid of acne, fighting autoimmune disorders – guys, I’ve got an autoimmune disorder, and I’m not pounding celery juice, and trust me, if there was something to help, I would be doing it – digestive issues.
So Mr. William claims that what is happening here is that, it’s hard for me to say with a straight face, but that celery juice has “sodium clusters” – which have not yet been discovered by science – and they cling to toxic dangerous salts that come from poor quality foods and they draw them out of your body and they can bind to viruses and bacteria and break them down and flush it out of your system and that’s why you see all this happening.
Keep in mind that the Medical Medium is, is not a doctor, he is not a nutritionist. And if you ask him where he gets this information from, he is very open that, “Spirits starts talking to me and I write every word exactly the way the spirit wants until I have a stack of notepads, many feet high. It’s a gift that was given to me.”
If you believe in spirits, that’s awesome. When it comes to nutrition and your health, they’re typically the last people I would go to for health advice, and that’s exactly how I feel about celery juice.
It is not devoid of benefits. You’ve got more potassium and more vitamin K than you would find in tomato juice or carrot juice. It’s going to be rather hydrating, but then again, so is water. So there are many liquids. So there is nothing inherently wrong with celery juice.
But if you were seeing benefits from it, in all likelihood, it’s probably because you are replacing a bad behavior with a better one. You are adding this celery juice to your diet and replacing something else and this can set off a chain of effects.
A couple of years ago when this first broke out, someone was telling me that they replaced their daily soda with celery juice and they felt better and had more energy. And I said, “You know what? That’s great and I’m happy. But at the same time, you could have replaced your daily soda with nothing. And you would probably feel the exact same way.”
And that’s how I feel about celery juice. It’s not bad for you. It can fit in your diet, but there’s nothing special about it that would lead to any of the claims other than you are likely to be adding a better behavior or just replacing a bad one.
So if you want to drink it, go for it. But after my assessment of the medical medium, I can say the celery juice doesn’t have any real magic.
Adam Bornstein is a New York Times bestselling author and, according to The Huffington Post, “one of the most inspiring sources in all of health and fitness.” An award-winning writer and editor, Bornstein was the Fitness and Nutrition editor for Men’s Health, Editorial Director at LIVESTRONG.com, and a columnist for SHAPE, Men’s Fitness, and Muscle & Fitness. He’s also a nutrition and fitness advisor for LeBron James, Cindy Crawford, Lindsey Vonn, and Arnold Schwarzenegger. His work has been featured in dozens of publications, including The New York Times, Fast Company, ESPN, and GQ, and he’s appeared on Good Morning America, The Today Show, E! News, and The Cheddar.