Juice cleanses are everywhere, at least here in Southern California where everyone is on the pinnacle of eating healthy, being healthy, and wanting to look and feel their best. You can’t turn a corner without seeing a new juice shop and that juice shop advertising their version of a juice cleanse. Juice cleanses are advertised to help you loose weight (which is not my main goal for doing the cleanse) and to rid your body of toxins and give your body a restart (this would was my main goal). I have always wanted to do one, but was always finding an excuse not to.
That was until one of my dear friends texted me last week, “You want to do a juice cleanse together?” Let me tell you, I am a sucker for doing things together with friends; when I was 20 my best friend told me we should get braces together and even did that…yeah, I’m a sucker. So of course I said YES to the juice cleanse! Plus I love challenging myself.
So we loaded up! 18 organic, cold-pressed juices for 3 days.
No food, just a juice every two hours. We had three flavors that we rotated, the juice combos were as follows:
- Juice 1:
Lemon, Jalapeño, Apple, Filtered Water
- Juice 2:
Carrot, Mango, Orange, Grapefruit, Ginger
- Juice 3:
Kale, Spinach, Cucumber, Celery, Lemon, Apple
With very little research about what we were doing, and a toast of our juice glasses, onward we went to Day 1 of the juice cleanse.
I was excited, nervous, and was on yummy juice #1! Of course it was yummy…it was my very first juice and juice is yummy! I had read a trick, it was to not let yourself get hungry, to keep drinking juice on a regular schedule so you are not drinking a juice and then crashing, drinking a juice, and then crashing…instead you maintain a consistent level liquids and energy in your body. So I stayed on schedule, every two hours, drink a juice. I think day #1 was the hardest.
- Mid day around 2pm (after juice #3): I was bit hungry, a little light headed, slight headache, a little spacey. Started to doubt if I’m going to be able to do this, but determined to prevail! (Note that 2pm is around my normal lunch time.)
- At 4pm (after juice #4): I got over the hump, back to normal, just peeing A LOT.
- I looked at the clock at 5:30pm (right before juice #5), and realized this was the first time I was not solely focused on my juice cleanse and obsessing about when I was to drink my next juice. Small victories!
- Around 8:30pm (after my #6 juice, last juice for the day) I had a slight headache, slight stomachache, mouth was a little raw probably from all the juice, and tongue was a little sensitive. (Note that 8:30/9pm is around my normal dinner time.)
I had read about this vegetable broth you can make where you boil a bunch of vegetables together and then drink the liquid part. This gives you a little something warm and savory during this time where you are consuming all things cold and sweet. I went to Trader Joe’s that night to buy items for my broth…and that was torture. To be around all that yummy food and not be able to eat it. Note: if you ever do this, plan ahead and buy your vegetable broth groceries BEFORE you start the cleanse.
- That night I put all the veggies in my slow cooker so it could be ready for tomorrow evening
- 10:30pm: slightly hungry but fine. Decided to go to bed early so I didn’t have to face any sort of feelings I’d get if I got extremely hungry.
Woke up great. Kind of loved that I wasn’t depending on my morning coffee, just some lovely juice. Didn’t notice any sort of hunger or anything until 4:30pm. It could have been because I was extremely busy and distracted all day, but I was so happy I was not feeling off about my body.
- Around 4:30 (after juice #4 for the day) I was pretty tired. This could have also been because I had a really busy day and that was my natural crashing point. Who knows.
The carrot and ginger juice was a little heavy for me for twice everyday.
- Around 5:00-6:00pm, it was a little hard to get my juice down, I wasn’t feeling it. And I was just REALLY tired of drinking juice (never thought that could happen)
- At 7:15pm: I was actually enjoying my juice again! haha! My body is feeling good about it, I guess I got over it quick! Actually skipped my last juice of the night and had the broth instead. On any other day I’m sure the broth would taste really bland, but this night, probably because it was just something different, it tasted yummy!
Day #3 – AN INTERESTING TURN OF EVENTS!
Ok, so day 3 took an interesting turn. Since I had been posting on Facebook and Instagram about my juice cleanse, I had a handful of very passionate people message me and tell me I needed to stop the juice cleanse RIGHT NOW. They told me they are SO bad for you and that I am not getting rid of toxins, instead filling my body with sugar, depriving my body of nutrients it needs, and damaging my metabolism. I was like, WHOA, ok ok people we all need to just calm down.
Before I jumped to conclusions and stopped my juice cleanse cold turkey, I decided to do a little research. And for every “Juice cleanses are bad for you” article, there are that many “Juice cleanses are great for you” articles. SO who was I to believe?
After reading both sides of the argument my consensus is this:
A 3-day juice cleanse is not going to be harmful to you but doing them for a longer period of time is harmful to your heath and metabolism. But although a 3-day cleanse may not be harmful to you, it is not really doing anything it claims to be doing (i.e. helping you loose weight or getting rid of toxins), you are simply just drinking juice for three days. It was suggested that if you are trying to loose weight: replacing a meal with a organic cold-pressed juice is fine, but not a hard core all-juice cleanse, you will just gain the weight right back. If you are trying to rid your body of toxins: eat healthier, with a lot of veggies, your liver and kidneys are there for a reason, and that is to help rid your body of toxins…but you have to help them out a little and eat well to keep them healthy. (And remember this is just my consensus, I am not in the health field and have no professional testing on this subject.)
Within reading all of this, on Day #3, I dropped it all and went out and ate a hamburger! Just kidding, haha. Instead of dropping it cold turkey, I did half of my juices throughout the day and incorporated a kale salad in for lunch, and some vegetable soup for dinner. And I felt great!
ALL IN ALL
During the juice cleanse I woke up with great energy and felt lighter on my feet. I feel like I only struggled around meal times, and that could have just been because mentally my body was used to eating at that time. Contrary to all the articles saying Juice Cleanses don’t do anything for you, I felt great after. It could have been a placebo effect, or that I was just proud of myself for doing something like this…either way it was a fun challenging experience to do with my friend! If you are going to do one here are a few tips I have:
- Have a variety of juices, have more than three flavors. I think my biggest challenge was getting tired of the same three flavors over and over.
- Keep on a schedule and don’t let yourself off of it or you might crash. Keep a consistent flow of juice through the body.
- Make a vegetable broth for the evening to give you something warm and savory.
- Stay distracted and busy. Nothing is worse then focusing on how much you want to eat food.
ALSO, I want to give a huge SHOUT OUT to Xanadu Juice for providing the most yummy juices! Check out Xanadu here http://www.thexanadulife.com