As of this writing, the world is still waiting for a rigorous, peer-reviewed study on the effects of drinking 16 ounces of fresh celery juice daily on an empty stomach.
Those studies that are health-related mostly use rodents. Medical research and science will someday catch up with the millions of people who have found healing with celery juice—who have discovered more energy and stamina than ever, reversed chronic and acute conditions alike, and gotten their lives back.
They will find that celery juice is—objectively—a healing medicine of our time.
The celery juice cleanse
First, you need to commit to at least a full month of drinking celery juice every day when you get up. We tend to have a lot that needs to be addressed in our bodies.
We've got the old, caked, rancid fats and hardened proteins on the intestinal linings; sluggish, stagnant livers filled with pesticides, pharmaceuticals, plastics and stored toxic fats and acids from the gut; high blood toxicity and elevated blood fat; plus the state of chronic dehydration in which most people live. Then there are all of the pathogens like viruses and bacteria sitting in our guts alone, not to mention in our bloodstreams, and more.
Optional lemon or lime water
Before you drink your celery juice each morning during this cleanse, you have the option of drinking lemon or lime water (or plain water) first, upon waking. A good amount is 32 ounces. This gives the liver a cleansing first thing in the morning.
If you go this route, make sure you wait at least 15 to 20 minutes and ideally 30 minutes or so after finishing your water before you start sipping your celery juice so you don't dilute the juice in your system.
If this is your very first time with celery juice, you don't need to start with 16 ounces. You could begin with 4 or 8 ounces and work your way up a little bit every day until you reach the full serving size.
As always, we are talking about 16 ounces of pure, fresh, unadulterated celery juice, not celery added to a smoothie. This is a case where simplest is best.
At least 15 to 20 minutes—and ideally a full 30 minutes or more—after finishing your celery juice, it's time to eat breakfast.
Celery juice is a medicinal drink, not a calorie source, so you're going to need some fuel to get through the rest of your morning. Fresh fruit or a fruit smoothie are your best options.
Avoid foods that get their calories from fat (including nuts, peanut butter, seeds, oil, coconut, eggs, nut milk, soy milk, dairy milk, butter, cream, cheese, yogurt and other dairy, chicken, meat, fish, fish oil capsules, bacon, sausage and ham) for breakfast during the cleanse.
As soon as you eat or drink fats, your liver must switch over to producing ample bile to send to your intestinal tract to help you digest and disperse them.
On top of which, your liver must process fat that's entering it from the bloodstream and also store some, so the heart doesn't get bombarded with too high an elevation of blood fat. All of this interrupts your body's natural morning cleanse state.
Drinking celery juice on an empty stomach with no fats, and then staying fat-free for a few hours after that, leaves room for the sodium clusters in celery juice to deal with gut pathogens and inflammation—problems that are behind symptoms and conditions such as small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), diverticulitis, celiac disease, colitis, bloating and constipation.
With fats in the morning diet, celery juice can lose its opportunity to kill off these bugs, raise hydrochloric acid to benefit digestion, and restore the liver.
To give your celery juice a chance to do all of its jobs, stay away from fats until at least lunchtime and fill up on nourishing, fortifying fruit, with leafy greens if desired. Oatmeal is another handy option.
Later in the morning, some steamed potatoes, sweet potatoes or winter squash could hit the spot, too. Remember, no nuts, seeds, nut butters, oils, avocados or animal proteins in the morning.
Then make sure to stay hydrated throughout the day, and avoid the foods on page 59 throughout the cleanse.
Leaves or stalk?
People often ask about the leaves of the celery—if they're good for you and whether you should juice them. The answer is that celery leaves are extremely medicinal.
They're loaded with minerals and other nutrients and even beneficial plant hormones.
However, the flavor of celery leaves can be very bitter, so if the taste of your celery juice turns you off, try trimming the leaves, either partly or all the way, before juicing and see if that makes the juice more palatable.
Store-bought celery tends to have few leaves left on it. Celery that you grow yourself or that you buy from a farmers market often has an abundance of leaves.
When using local or homegrown celery, I recommend that you trim some of the leaves back and make sure that the majority of what you're juicing is celery stalk.
Too many celery leaves can give juice an astringency that makes it less enjoyable, so you may not want to drink as much of it. Too many leaves can also lead to more rapid detox, again making the overall experience of celery juice less enjoyable and making it less likely that you'll keep going with it.
Since store-bought celery usually doesn't have as many leaves, your choice whether or not to juice them really only depends on your own taste and preference.
Avoid problematic foods
For all 30-plus days of the cleanse, try to avoid the following foods:
• Milk, cheese, butter, whey protein powder, yogurt and all other dairy products
• Pork products
• Nutritional yeast
• Canola oil
• Natural flavors
• Fermented foods
What we know so far
Some studies have been carried out in animals so may not apply to humans, but the evidence on celery thus far is promising.
Slows or stops the growth of certain cancers
Celery contains two flavonoids, apigenin and luteolin. Eating a diet high in flavonoids has been shown to reduce the risk of breast cancer by 19 percent.1
Apigenin specifically appears to protect against leukemia, plus breast, ovarian, pancreatic, lung, prostate and thyroid cancers.2
One small study found that women consuming the highest levels of apigenin had a 21 percent reduced risk of developing ovarian cancer.3 Apigenin can also fight existing pancreatic cancer and promote cancer cell death.4 In lab studies, luteolin appears to halt the progression of colon cancer.5
May prevent diabetes
A large Dutch study found that patients consuming high levels of vitamin K (present in abundance in celery) are nearly one-fifth less likely to develop type 2 diabetes.6
May decrease stomach inflammation and kill gut bugs.
Celery seeds appear to hinder the growth of Helicobacter pylori bacteria in the gut.7 In one study, gerbils infected with H. pylori were given high doses of apigenin, which significantly decreased the proliferation of the bug and any resulting gastritis.8
May protect the heart
High intake of foods rich in vitamin C, such as celery, can help keep carotid arteries from thickening and so keep blood flowing freely.9
Helps with gout
Celery seeds can lower uric acid, which is elevated in people with gout, a form of arthritis, by a whopping 56 percent—at least in rats.10