Juice cleanses and detox programs have been all the rage for several years. As it turns out, though, it seems like a new fad is on rise: souping. In fact, several companies have even gained rapid success selling either premade soups that make up a complete detox program or “soup makers” so that you can make your own healthy soups at home.
So, let’s get down to it: Is souping worth it? What are the benefits of this new fad? What do you need to now?
The Deal With Detox
The first thing that we need to address is the proposed detox benefits of both juicing and souping. In short, cleanses do not work. Or, if they do, there is no science to prove either their efficacy or necessity.
Your body has natural systems in place for removing toxins – primarily, your liver and kidneys. And these do an excellent job. It is true that some of the more dangerous chemicals are not removed by the liver and kidneys, but that’s because these substances are fat-soluble. This means that even a high-fiber cleanse wouldn’t be able to get to them since they are stored in your body fat. The only way to reliably get rid of any potential toxins, then, is to lose weight. And research backs this up, suggesting that slender people are more efficient when it comes to naturally getting rid of these chemicals.
Any weight-loss benefits attributed to these detoxes are generally because the programs are severally calorie-restricted. One of the most popular soup cleanses on the market right now, for example, provides just about 1200 calories in a single day. The standard juice cleanses would likely be even less.
Souping Vs. Juicing
All that being said, is there any benefit that souping has over juicing?
Depending on the ingredients used, many juices are extremely high in sugars and can carry a considerable glycemic load. Souping, on the other hand, tends not to have the same impact. Again, it all depends on the ingredients used.
Soups will also likely be more filling and made with heartier ingredients, so you may not encounter the same feelings of hunger that you would on a juice cleanse.
All in all, cleanses are unnecessary – regardless of whether they include soups or juices. There is no proof that either approach can effectively help your body remove toxins, or that it even needs help.
It is worth stating, however, that following an extremely low calorie diet for an extended period can be damaging to your metabolism and encourage counter-productive yoyo dieting. In terms of weight loss and general health, it’s much more effective to simply eat a balanced diet and allow your body to do it’s job.