Wondering what all the hype is about celery juice? Get the details from a doctor before jumping on this trend.
If you’ve been on Instagram lately, you’ve probably seen celery juice in your feed at least once. Celery juice is popping up all over as a supposed cure-all for everything from chronic pain to digestive issues and skin conditions.
People are posting about their experiences with drinking 16 ounces of fresh celery juice every morning on an empty stomach, claiming it has helped IBS, migraines, adrenal fatigue, asthma, sinusitis, and more. But what really are the benefits of this celery juice trend? Hear what Parsley Health’s Gabriella Safdieh, MD has to say.
Is drinking celery juice safe?
Juicing in general tends to get a bad rap, because while eating a variety of whole fruits and vegetables is essential to a healthy, balanced diet, there isn’t much scientific evidence to show that juicing is better than eating whole foods. In fact, it may be worse. “When you eat whole fruits or vegetables, you’re getting the benefit of the fiber, which helps move food through your system and helps feed the good bacteria in your gut,” Dr. Safdieh explains. When it comes to juice, the fiber content is stripped from its ingredients, and while this still leaves you with important vitamins and minerals, you lose one of the biggest benefits of fruits and veggies. Beyond maintaining a healthy digestive system, fiber helps keep you fuller longer, lower cholesterol, and balance your hormones.
That being said, drinking celery juice is certainly safe, just make sure you are getting adequate fiber in your diet in other ways. Dr. Safdieh recommends incorporating whole, plant-based foods, like beans, berries, nuts and seeds, to reach your daily fiber goals. At Parsley Health, we recommend at least 30-40 grams of fiber per day to reap all the benefits.
Is there any benefit to drinking celery juice on an empty stomach?
While many people on the celery juice bandwagon advocate for drinking the magical elixir on an empty stomach, suggesting that it will contribute to improved digestion, there isn’t any scientific evidence to support this claim. And moreover, this may make it more difficult to make sure you’re getting in all of the necessary macronutrients your diet requires, such as essential fiber, fats, protein, and carbohydrates. So if you do choose to drink celery juice first thing in the morning on an empty stomach, make sure you’re getting your fill of whole, nutrient-rich foods later in the day.
Health benefits of celery juice
Much of the buzz around the benefits of celery juice is the claim that it has the ability to actually treat certain conditions, like IBS or cystic acne. And while more research is needed to draw any definitive conclusions, there is a chance of promising health benefits of celery juice. For starters, Dr. Safdieh says, “Fresh celery provides a source of vitamin K, vitamin C, potassium, folate, manganese, calcium, riboflavin, magnesium, and vitamin B6,” all essential vitamins and minerals for a balanced diet.
It’s long been established that consuming antioxidant foods potentially decreases risks of getting cancer by protecting your cells and organs from oxidative damage. Celery has powerful antioxidant characteristics, with at least twelve known antioxidant compounds such as caffeic acid, p-coumaric acid, and ferulic acid, helping it to remove free radicals in the body. It’s also been found to have anti-inflammatory properties, helping to reduce inflammation in the body—the number one cause of underlying chronic disease.
In addition to its anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory properties, some studies have shown that celery can help prevent cardiovascular diseases, jaundice, liver disease, urinary tract obstruction, gout, and rheumatic disorders. Celery can even reduce blood sugar levels, blood lipids, and blood pressure. Celery seeds have even been used in the treatment of skin conditions including psoriasis, and respiratory diseases including asthma and bronchitis.
In one study on diabetic rats, treatment with an extract from celery seed modified their glucose and insulin levels, improved weight, and increased antioxidant enzyme activity. Another study found that celery leaf extract reduced blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglyceride levels, in animals with hypertension, or high blood pressure.
Despite these benefits, there have not been large human studies done using celery juice as a treatment for chronic conditions. So while it’s possible that celery juice may reap some of the same benefits as its whole-food counterpart, it’s certainly not a guarantee. If you think you may have a health condition, it’s best to talk to your doctor about the best course of action.
Final thoughts on celery juice
While there’s no concrete evidence that celery juice will live up to all the hype, it doesn’t hurt to have a glass here and there, or even make it a staple in your morning routine. Celery juice is a healthy and nutritious option for those that enjoy it, but it’s likely no better than any other green smoothie or juice you could opt for—so whatever method you prefer is best, as long as you’re getting in the recommended five to nine servings of fruits and veggies everyday.
If you want to give celery juice a try, our smoothie recipes will help you get all the antioxidant benefits of celery, without missing out on the fiber. Here are some of our Parsley Health favorites: