Celery Juice... the man, the myth, NOT the legend.


For years, there has been an avalanche of green juice loving folks. Slowly people came to terms with the idea that a bottle of anything is never a magic cure for a lifetime of low diet quality. As with everything (don't get me on the vaccine discussion, this is a nutrition rebuttal only), some will always rebel against the science and capitalize people's utmost desire for a quick fix.

In walks, Anthony Williams a.k.a, the Medical Medium. RD rebuttals are not about a person and are not and will not be personal attacks. But I will attack this pseudo-science, for exactly what it is--pseudo-science. For anyone reading this not knowing what I'm talking about, I'm going to take off my Nutrition hat for a second and tell you what this whole "Celery Juice" fad is all about.

So when doing my investigating of who Anthony Williams is (I promise it's relevant), I went to MedicalMedium.com, you can too.

No fables here, this is the about me section: "When Anthony was four years old, he shocked his family when he announced at the dinner table that his symptom-free grandmother had lung cancer. Medical testing soon confirmed the diagnosis." wait, what? I don't get it, he diagnosed his grandma with lung cancer at 4 years old? Is that suppose to give him some sort of credit in the medical world? Is that enough for people to know everything there is to know about him, it is literally the "about me" section of his personal website. Then when you look down you can see the multiple books he has written. Then it's my personal favorite section, the endorsements. Yes, he is endorsed by lots of people that are claiming that he has helped them--which, I'm sure he actually has. But can we just look at these endorsements? Just because he has celebrity endorsements does not constitute him as an expert on anything at all! Sorry, but accurate.

It appears Anthony is not a doctor in any respect, but now I finally understand the "medium" part. That's why the silly lung cancer story was put there. He's a medium not a medical professional--and NOT a nutrition professional AT ALL. Did you hear me? Not a nutrition professional AT ALL. Again, no disrespect Anthony Williams, it's not personal.

Let's move on from this and talk about the juice.

I did a search on celery juice and it is the most fascinating read I've had. People are swearing by the "healing properties" that a bottle of juice can have; some who believe a green juice can fix their evening transgressions. And my personal favorite, people who have gone out to buy a juicer and 3 pounds of celery every few days to drink a 16 oz. glass of juice every morning. Nasty.

From the medical medium blog, "Celery is truly the savior when it comes to chronic illness. I’ve seen thousands of people who suffer from chronic and mystery illness restore their health by drinking 16 ounces of celery juice daily on an empty stomach." Savior? 1 vegetable is a savior? Come one people... Empty stomach is also a load of garbage, your stomach knows how to work. Stop insulting it with this "empty" vs. "full" crap.

"If you drink your celery juice first thing in the morning, it will also strengthen your digestion of foods you eat for the rest of the day." Sorry, gonna need to read that one over again. Morning juice somehow takes over for your stomach's inherent ability to promote digestion? Do I believe a big glass of water in the morning after a long fast (sleeping) is a nice way to welcome your body into the new day of work-- sure. But the fact that it will somehow strengthen something-- no folks, just no. Stop believe this stuff.

This is the best claim yet. "Celery is perfect for reversing inflammation, because it starves the pathogens, including unproductive bacteria and viruses such as Epstein-Barr (EBV), that create it." Excuse me, if you actually believe that a single vegetable can starve a pathogen, than the food we ate would be merely consumed to fight off X disease or X infection. It's not true folks. Food is nutrient, yes. Hippocrates said food is medicine, and I think we're taking that WAY to heart here; food is just, food.

My turn Anthony Williams, my turn.

First let's get into this "savior" stalk. It is a green vegetable, yes. Vegetables are good for you, yes. Sometimes this particular green goddess has been used as a "diet" aid (gasp, the RD said the word 'diet'). For some background, and in case you have no idea what in the world I'm talking about, celery is a long fibrous stalk, some people peel it before eating-- not me, the more fiber the better, yo!

It is relatively low in calories, only about 16 calories per 100 grams, which is about 2 foot long stalks, there is roughly ~70 calories in 16 oz. of celery juice. Celery has long been thought of as having 0 or even negative calories, sorry folks that's not true. For something to have negative calories the thermal effect of the item (the amount of energy required by your body to digest, absorb, etc. the food item) needs to be near and around 100%. The thermic effect of celery is ~ 8%. But also, you need to consider the percent water, which for celery is 95%--woah!

I actually enjoy celery both raw (with peanut butter, my inner kid is screaming), or cooked-- yes, cooked it's a middle eastern stew (recipe soon!). But, juicing it and thinking it will make you healthy? Girl, grab some water, that's some expensive hydration you have there.

Verdict: Drink some water buttercup. Drink it on an empty or full stomach, it doesn't matter. Your body is brilliant, your body is smart, quit belittling it. Your body has brought you to this day, has grown, learned, and needs to be fueled. But there are no silver bullets, no "saviors" or magic nutrients--there isn't. And this, is why people don't like us educated nutrition folks. Because we don't give them an easy out like the health influencers out there. We tell people to "eat healthy", "eat in moderation", "eat well", "nourish your body"-- but, that's not satisfactory for some people. They need to know what, when, how, how many grams... etc.

If you want some truth, drink water. Keep your body hydrated. You want to waste your money and fall into another mindless fad trap, I guess go buy some celery and juice it? What's next, potato juice? BRB I just threw up a little.

Relax. Eat food. Drink Water. Sleep. Love. Smile. & Repeat. But for goodness sakes, stop drinking celery juice.

References:

Medical Medium Blog: https://www.medicalmedium.com/blog/celery-juice Accessed June 5, 2019

About Anthony William: https://www.medicalmedium.com/medical-medium-about-anthony-william Accessed June 5, 2019

"Negative Calorie foods still count", Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: https://www.eatright.org/health/weight-loss/fad-diets/negative-calorie-foods-still-count Accessed June 4, 2019


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All opinions on this blog reflect my own. Please do not borrow without asking, as I promise to do the same. The information in this blog is my own personal experience, research, knowledge, or nutrition expertise. I am a Registered Dietitian and Licensed in the state of Massachusetts, however, none of the information on this blog is a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The information on this website has not been evaluated by the FDA and is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any disease. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should consult with a physician or other health-care professional.