For those of you who know me, I am sure you would have been shocked to realise I was indulging in what is perceived to be as a food “fad”. I make a point about ‘jerf-ing’ (Just Eat Real Food) and I tend to steer clear of the latest gimmicks and crazes. So why would I opt for a juice cleanse?
My interest in the process of juice cleansing began when I started to investigate Gerson Therapy. For those of you who don’t know, Gerson Therapy has become a very popular holistic treatment for a number of degenerative diseases, including cancer, whereby patients are put on a strict nutritional program that is designed to activate the body’s natural ability to heal itself. A big part of this program revolves around juicing for extended periods of time. By juicing, patients can take in the nutrients and enzymes from copious amounts of produce every day, in a manner that is easy to digest and absorb. It is designed to detoxify the system and re-boot the body in a healthy way. Gerson Therapy has had some incredible results. After investigating more and more, I realised there might be a lot more to juicing than I first realised. You can read more about the health benefits of a juice cleanse here.
Now, before I delve into my experiences, I wanted to be clear on a few things:
- I did not commit to this cleanse for weight-loss
- The cleanse was not the follow-up after a big weekend (or weekends) on the drink
- This cleanse was not something I designed myself. The juice cleanse contained green juices, smoothies and fermented probiotic elixirs, all designed and tested by the incredible team at ‘The Living Juice Co.’
- This cleanse was made using the highest quality organic ingredients (how can you really cleanse when you are drinking produce sprayed with pesticides?) that were cold-pressed for maximum nutritional value.
- The juices came in 100% recyclable glass bottles, not plastic (no BPA).
For many, many years I have suffered with very weak (and somewhat sensitive) digestion and somewhere along the line (coupled with a whole lot of inter-state travel and lack of routine), I slipped up (yes, I’m looking at you almonds!) and it caused my digestive system to become quite inflamed. The juice cleanse was something I did to enable my digestive system to take some time out whilst my body detoxified and began some repair.
After speaking with the beautiful Nicole at ‘The Living Juice Co.’, I opted for the 3 day juice cleanse, Nicole also has a 1 and 5 day cleanse available. After speaking to Nicole about my needs, I opted for the ‘Pure Deep Greens’ cleanse, a cleanse low in sugar and high in alkalising greens. I was given 8 drinks per day. These were to be consumed as I liked. Because my digestion was struggling, I also opted to include a cup of rich bone broth first thing in the morning. You can read more about bone broth here.
Before you begin a juice cleanse, Nicole recommends you cut back on all the processed foods, caffeine and alcohol to enable your body to do maximum repair and reduce your cravings and withdrawals on the cleanse. Because I don’t consume any of those things (only caffeine and alcohol occasionally), I jumped straight in!
When you are on the cleanse, you are encouraged to drink lots of purified water and as many organic herbal teas as you like. To help boost the health of my liver, I opted to have some Dandelion and Chicory Root tea on hand, you can read more about this here. I also made sure I had enough lemons in the house to help kick-start my detoxification with a glass of warm lemon juice and water; you can read more about this here.
I woke up early and was excited to get started. I opted to start the cleanse on the days I knew Andrew (my partner) was going to be out of the house. This was to reduce temptation and prevent delicious aromas of roasted vegetables wafting down the hallway.
I took my first juice out of the fridge and set it aside (I don’t do that well on really cold foods, so I wanted to take the edge off). I kickstarted my morning with a glass of lemon juice and water and then later, a glass of rich bone broth. I had my first green juice and went for a walk on the beach. Nicole mentioned it is important to keep moving whilst you are on the cleanse to encourage the flush out of toxins.
I returned home expecting to be starving, but I was feeling great. I continued about my day, skipping my next juice, and then the one after, I was feeling fine… until around 1pm. This is when I started to feel a little out of whack and the hunger pangs set in. I was struggling to concentrate and opted to ‘cash-in’ on the juices I had ‘saved’. I returned to some-what normal and moved through the day at around 80%.
That night at university we had a substitute lecturer that did his very best to test my ability to stay awake. I couldn’t concentrate and I fought the urge to rest my head on the desk and take a quick nap. I skipped class and came home. I was feeling hungry and I took it upon myself to opt for 1 tablespoon of avocado and lemon juice (I know I cheated, but I knew I had to get level my blood sugars stat), only to crash on the couch soon after.
When your digestion is struggling, you can find it hard to get out of bed in the morning. This is something I had been experiencing the last few days of travel and the few days leading up to the cleanse. I am pleased to report that Day 2 of my cleanse saw me bound out of bed at 5am (just like my old self). I felt empowered to take on the day and was excited to get started. I followed the same morning routine as I did on Day 1 however, this time I stuck to the schedule: 1 juice every 2 hours regardless of whether I felt like it or not! I cruised through day 2.
That night Andrew was cooking up a storm in the kitchen and a part of me was screaming for the sensation of chewing my food. I am pleased to report I stayed focused and having thought ahead, saved my most delicious juice till last. It satisfied me completely. I went to bed.
Day 3 was a breeze and part of me felt a little sad knowing that I was approaching the end of my cleanse! I was also a little bummed about no longer receiving the beautiful and inspiring daily ‘cleanse support’ newsletters from the team at ‘The Living Juice Co.’ – they were my favourite.
That night, I sipped on my last juice, feeling empowered. I fell into a deep and restful sleep. My first juice cleanse was done.
This is the ‘juicy’ part (pardon the pun). I eat a really well balanced diet, I don’t drink much coffee or alcohol, so my results will be far different from many others. After 3 days of drenching my insides with juice I felt amazing. Specific benefits included:
- My digestion improved dramatically
- My eyes were bright and rich in colour
- I was (and still am) bounding out of bed early, full of energy and enthusiasm to take on the day.
- I had lost all of the fluid that I had been retaining as a result of my inflamed digestion and as such I had dropped 2kgs by the end of the cleanse.
- I am falling into a deep and restful sleep almost as soon as my head hits the pillow.
I loved how I felt on day 3 and a juice cleanse with ‘The Living Juice Co.’ is something I will definitely do again.
I honestly believe that everyone, no matter how clean their diets are will benefit from an organic juice cleanse.
Have you done a juice cleanse? What are you thoughts?