What’s the buzz?
Celery-juice aficionados swear that a morning glass will soothe, slenderize, and make your skin radiant.
What does the science say?
The humble vegetable best known for crudite platters or the kids’ after-school snack of “ants on a log” has taken center stage in the latest wellness craze. Instagram influencers, wellness bloggers, and celebrities are all professing their love for (or at least their devotion to) a glass full of celery. Yes, you read that right. Started by Anthony William, author of the blog Medical Medium, this latest trend requires that you start your day by drinking 16 ounces of juiced celery (about a head of celery) on an empty stomach. While he says that you can ease into it by combining the celery with a bit of lemon juice or fresh pressed apple juice, it’s best if your green drink contains only celery. He claims that he’s seen people heal all kinds of mystery illnesses with this one dietary change. But he also notes that science and the medical community have not caught up to his beliefs…yet.
There hasn’t been any research to show the effects of drinking large amounts of celery juice, and we’re not holding our breath that there will be. Celery offers a variety of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, all for very few calories. Celery juice, like any other vegetable or fruit juice, is a concentrated form of these nutrients and can be one way to boost your nutrient consumption throughout the day. But you’re also missing out on the fiber that makes celery and other vegetables great for blood sugar control, digestive health, and weight management. There isn’t anything particularly special about celery compared to other vegetables, so it’s unlikely that it contains some magic nutrient that other vegetables are missing. William claims that celery contains “undiscovered cluster salts” that play a role in the juice’s ability to cure diseases, but these are…well, yet to be discovered.
Also, more isn’t always better. We need a variety of nutrients to thrive, so relying on a concentrated form of one vegetable is not a shortcut to peak health.
What’s the takeaway?
If you truly enjoy the taste of celery juice (but really, do you?), it’s safe to drink as long as you don’t have an allergy to celery. However, don’t expect it to cure all of your ailments. Juice of any kind lacks fiber, one of the many benefits of eating fruits and vegetables, and is a concentrated source of sugar. Aim for a variety of fruits and vegetables throughout your day, and for the most benefit, eat them in their whole form.