Celery juice is on everyone’s lips: It started with celebrities and Instagram influencers and quickly spread around the globe, with respected physicians like Mark Hyman, M.D., shouting out support, and millions of women gushing about benefits, ranging from fewer headaches to thicker hair to complete remission from autoimmune conditions. Sales of celery have also tripled in the past year, Whole Foods Market reports, and several states have experienced celery shortages. Why has this one ingredient concoction become so popular?
“Millions are healing miraculously just by drinking celery juice,” says Anthony William, known as the Medical Medium. Though not a physician, William credits a spirit of compassion with leading him to cutting-edge advice that women swear by. And as he explains in his new book, Medical Medium: Celery Juice ($10.19, Amazon), the elixir is so powerful because it restores sluggish stomach acid production.
”Celery juice is the one thing that brings back stomach acid like nothing else ever could”, William declares.
Indeed, 80% of women over 40 don’t produce enough stomach acid. “Over time, everybody’s acid production weakens,” says William. “Add the stress of everyday life, and our ability to make stomach acid burns out.”
So why is this a problem? “Almost one-third of the vitamins and minerals that are essential to life can’t be broken down or absorbed without ample stomach acid”, asserts Jonathan Wright, M.D., author of Why Stomach Acid Is Good for You ($15.95, Amazon). And shortfalls of essential nutrients speed age-related muscle loss, causing metabolic slowdowns that lead to weight gain.
Surprisingly, 90% of heartburn is caused by low stomach acid, say Mayo Clinic researchers. The reason: The cap between the esophagus and the stomach is controlled by acid levels in the stomach; when levels are low, the cap loosens and acid flows into the esophagus.
Finally, low stomach acid allows illness-causing bacteria to flourish. “Ordinarily, a whole range of bad-guy bacteria would quickly meet their maker in a pool of stomach acid, but when stomach acid is deficient, many of these microorganisms live to multiply”, explains Dr. Wright. The result? Low energy, sugar cravings, and weight gain.
How does celery juice help with stomach acid?
William credits sodium cluster salts — as yet undiscovered trace minerals in celery — for dialing up stomach acid. “There’s sodium in other foods, but sodium cluster salts are found only in celery,” he says. “These cluster salts also fight off unwanted bacteria.” Research backs up the GI-healing power of celery: An Italian study found that flavonoids in celery improve digestion and promote nutrient absorption, and a Japanese study found that flavonoids in the juice kill harmful stomach bacteria. For women FIRST talked to, these lab results transferred into real-life weight loss— as much as 10 pounds a week!
“And the benefits don’t stop in the gut,” says William, who cites clearer skin, sustained energy, better mental clarity and stable moods. “Celery juice is also helping people heal from acute and chronic illnesses, including Hashimoto’s, eczema, constipation, migraines, and countless others.”
How to Incorporate Celery Juice Into Your Diet
To optimize the benefits of his celery juice protocol, William recommends drinking the juice of one lemon or lime mixed with 16 to 32 ounces of water first thing in the morning. “This flushes your gut to get rid of all the toxins that have built up overnight,” he says. “That way, the celery juice gets to start fresh with a clean slate and is able to go deeper.”
Thirty minutes after sipping the citrus water, you’ll drink 16 ounces of plain, freshly prepared celery juice on an empty stomach (see the easy howto at right). “When your stomach is empty, the celery juice can stay in contact with the entire lining of the gut for a longer period of time,” explains Jonathan Wright, M.D. “It can’t work its magic unless it comes into contact with the gut lining.” Can’t stomach all 16 ounces? Feel free to start smaller by drinking four or eight ounces of celery juice, but William suggests adding a bit more every day until you reach the full 16 ounces.
After your celery juice, William says it is best to wait at least 20 minutes before eating breakfast. “Celery juice is not a calorie source, so you’re going to need some fuel to get you through your morning,” he says. He recommends enjoying a fat-free morning meal that includes some fruit, like a smoothie or a bowl of oatmeal topped with fresh berries. “The minute a food with fat, like eggs, cheese, avocado or nut butter, goes into your digestive tract, the body has to start secreting digestive fluid— and that’s just one more thing that can get in the way of the celery juice working for you,” explains William. “The carbs in fruit, on the other hand, don’t require as much digestive fluid to break down.”
For the rest of the day, you can eat whatever you want, though William recommends avoiding common inflammation-triggering foods, such as dairy, eggs, gluten, corn, soy, canola oil and pork. Be sure to also drink lots of water, aiming for 64 ounces daily, to flush toxins and promote stomach acid production. For best results, William suggests following this formula for at least 30 days.
This method is helping millions of women restore stomach acid production and jump-start slimming. Take Alexis Allen, a 33-year-old mother of five, who suffered with fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, chronic acid reflux, and anxiety. Her conditions required popping prescriptions throughout the day — though none of them provided lasting relief. “Then a co-worker told me about Medical Medium,” shares Alexis. She quickly implemented his advice, drinking celery juice first thing in the morning, and her turnaround was amazing. “After that first day, my anxiety lessened. Within a week, my GI issues resolved. Within two weeks, I lost 16 pounds and within a month my skin was clearer. Today, all of my conditions are in remission. It was life-changing!”
But what if I don’t like celery juice?
“If you don’t like the taste of celery juice, honestly, I don’t blame you,” laughs William. “But people drink it because they get incredible results.” If you find you really don’t like the taste the first time you try it, William suggests keeping with it: “You may have gotten a particularly bitter or astringent batch of celery”, he says. “The next time, you might get some that tastes delicious, salty, and slightly sweet.” No matter how it tastes, William advises against diluting your celery juice or cutting it with another juice — any add-ins disturb the balance of beneficial healing minerals.
Hollywood Loves Celery Juice, Too
Countless actors, athletes, and other famous faces — from Academy Award–winner Robert De Niro to Olympic gold medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings — are fans of Anthony William’s Medical Medium protocol, gushing about the truly transformative healing powers of celery juice. Here, what three stars have to say about the ways it has changed their lives.
Dancing With the Stars alum and Days of Our Lives legend Lisa Rinna, 56, swears by drinking celery juice— and she’s made it a family affair. “[Anthony William] has helped both my daughters and me, giving us tools to support our health that actually work,” shares Rinna. “Celery juice is now a part of our regular routine.”
Will & Grace star and Broadway performer Debra Messing, 51, can’t let chronic allergies slow her down, so she turned to Anthony William. “After introducing his celery juice protocol into my daily routine, I have seen a marked improvement in every aspect of my health,” she cheers. “This past year has been my healthiest yet.”
Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and Little House on the Prairie alum Kyle Richards, 50, turned to the Medical Medium for help getting healthy from the inside out so she could keep up with her four daughters. “Celery juice…is a game-changer. I drink that every single day,” she shares. “It’s made a big difference on my skin and face.”
How to Make Celery Juice
To make one healing glass of celery juice, you need one whole bunch of celery. When you’re ready to make juice, break apart the stalks, rinse, and place inside a juicer or blender.
In a juicer. For best results, William suggests using a masticating juicer, which breaks down produce more efficiently, yielding more juice. With this type of juicer, you can prepare the juice before bed and it’ll stay fresh overnight. (If the juice develops a film on top, skim it off before drinking.) William likes the Aicok Slow Masticating Juicer ($89.99, Amazon).
In a blender. Chop the celery into 1” pieces, place in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Do not add water. Strain the juice, using cheesecloth to remove the pulp, which creates a barrier between the juice and the stomach lining.
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.