Juicing, cleanses, and detox diets are super trendy right now, and by a show of hands (or likes), how many of you have done one? Coach Tim may have already schooled us that Juice Cleanses Don’t Work, but I just had to find out for myself.
After doing my due diligence in researching how to make homemade recipes, online companies, and local companies, I settled on Clean Juice®. Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with this company or its products, but they have a local branch, and I really liked what I saw when I visited the nearest location.
Upon entering the location, I was shown the variety of juices and the fresh ingredients used in creating the juices and informed that when I was ready to sign up, I could do a one-day, three-day, or five-day program. I decided one day wouldn’t really tell me a whole heck of a lot, and five days may be a little too much, so I selected the three-day program. Truth be told, it is a rotation of the same six juice blends for each day, so the only thing you decide on is the duration. Three days seemed doable.
Each day of juices provides roughly 1,060 calories, which for a lot of people is well below their calories for the day, but for me, it sits just about right and may even be a little higher than normal.
My 6 Juice Blends
According to Clean Juice, it’s perfect to drink first thing in the morning because all of the nutrients in the leafy greens help to digest food from the previous day. The ingredients are organic kale, organic spinach, organic cucumber, organic apple, and organic mint.
The claimed benefits are a huge vitamin boost, sharp brain, glowing skin, and regulating pH.
The bottle reads: “Dear Friend, I hope all is well with you and that you are as healthy in body as you are in spirit.” 3 John 1:2
According to Clean Juice, all the fruits in this cold-pressed juice will give you the energy you need to burn for the rest of the day. The ingredients are organic orange, organic carrot, organic pineapple, and organic turmeric.
The claimed benefits are “cold and flu protection, happy digestive tract, joint and bone relief, and reduced inflammation.”
This veggie-loaded bottle consists of water and nutrients for a hydrating juice that will continue the breakdown of food according to Clean Juice. The ingredients are organic spinach, organic celery, organic kale, organic cucumber, organic ginger, and organic lemon.
The claimed benefits are “low sugar/high vitamin boost, hydration, illness protection, and antioxidant boost.”
The cayenne and lemon in this cold-pressed juice, according to Clean Juice, help break down any toxins in the body. The ingredients are filtered water, organic lemon, organic cayenne, and organic maple syrup.
The claimed benefits are “a boost in stamina, improved blood flow, skin and eye protection, and a huge vitamin boost.”
According to Clean Juice, this juice acts as a vasodilator (expands blood vessels and increases blood flow) because of the nitric oxide in beets. This juice is perfect in the afternoon/early evening to avoid a late-day crash. When blood is rushing through the body, you will feel more energized! The ingredients are organic beet, organic apple, organic carrot, and organic lemon.
The claimed benefits are “intense detox, increased metabolism, lower blood pressure, and healthy cell function.”
Finish off with this “dessert” cold-press that is high in protein says Clean Juice. It will help keep you full before bed and the protein will break down overnight. The ingredients are organic cashews, filtered water, organic cinnamon, organic vanilla, organic maple syrup, and Himalayan pink sea salt.
The claimed benefits are “a good source of protein, healthy muscles, promotes heart health, and calms nerves.”
My Juice Cleanse Schedule
- Drink all juices 2 ½ to 3 hours apart. This helps maintain a full stomach throughout the day.
- Drink water. Like lots of it. Clean Juice recommends at least one full glass between each juice.
- If you are starving and really think you can’t make it through… don’t blow it! Have a handful of unsalted, organic nuts, or a small leafy green salad with a small breast of grilled chicken.
- Have drink #6—cult favorite “White”—at least one hour before going to sleep. This allows the body to digest it before you zonk out for the night.
- Turn your cleanse day into a total wellness experience! Cleanse on a weekend and spend some time pampering yourself. Go for a walk, read a book, spend some time in nature reflecting, and have an accountability partner!
My Personal Experience: Day 1
I decided to fast the day prior to my juice cleanse because everyone I have spoken with says you will be hungry while doing a cleanse. I figured why not prepare myself, so it’s like a treat to have some calories. Some of you may be asking yourselves if I’m crazy. Wouldn’t it be a better idea to eat a bunch of my favorite foods since I would be limited to juice beverages for three days?
In my mind, that completely negates the whole purpose of living a healthy lifestyle. I also spoke with a very helpful associate who informed me that if I consumed caffeine regularly, I should stop that a few days prior or at least wean myself off. She also suggested I eliminate processed foods and dairy.
I was super pumped for the first day. I had a whole schedule mapped out of the exact time for each juice. I weighed myself when I first woke up and documented that. I even donated my leftovers to the neighbor so that I a) wouldn’t be tempted and b) wouldn’t waste food.
I headed out the door as soon as the sun rose so I could complete my morning walk of 10,000 steps and raced back home to crack open the first juice.
The first juice was rather delicious. It didn’t even taste like I was drinking a healthy juice/cleanse. I didn’t want to full on chug it, but I was kind of hungry from fasting the previous day, so it went down rather quickly.
The second juice was definitely a little more of what I expected a juice cleanse to taste like. I could taste the vegetables in it, and the color was a vibrant orange. It appeared thicker than the first shake. So far so good.
The third juice was a plain green shake, as opposed to sweet green, so I was noticing a pattern that they start you off with something that doesn’t taste like leafy greens and then slowly bring out the natural-earthy tasting flavors.
Nothing could have prepared me for the fourth juice which was basically cayenne pepper and vinegar. Sure, there were other things in there, but it burned going down, and it was all I could do to take baby sips followed with water. I wasn’t even finished with this one by the time the fifth one was scheduled, so these two basically were one long juice.
The fifth juice was a vibrant reddish-purple color, and it felt very heavy going down. I am not sure if I was full up on juice or if this particular juice was just thicker in general.
The last and final juice of the day was hands down the best juice I have ever had. If I didn’t know it as part of a cleanse, I would have thought it was a tasty protein shake that I whipped up.
Overall, the first day was a success with the exception of waking up in the middle of the night with the beginning signs of a migraine. I attempted to drink a glass of water in the hopes of falling back asleep quickly but to no avail. Despite feeling rather full at bedtime, I questioned if my headache was due to dehydration, but I couldn’t shake the headache. I ended up taking one of my prescription migraine medications, and luckily, the headache dissipated. For those of you wondering, I was using the restroom more frequently, but nothing crazy was happening, and the juice wasn’t loose, if you know what I mean.
My Personal Experience: Day 2
I was still pretty excited about this whole juice cleanse thing, and I am not sure if it was all psychological or what, but I felt like I had more energy rolling out of bed. Even though I was woken up in the middle of the night with a headache, once that passed, I was back to la la land dreaming of sugarplums.
I completed my first walk of the day for 10,000 steps, just as I had the day before, but I felt a little more pep in my step.
That was until I cracked open the first juice. It went down fine, but I began to feel really full. I was mindful to consume plenty of water as I was advised to do by the associate in the store; however, I just couldn’t drink as much as I wanted because I was just so darn full.
I hadn’t even finished the first juice, and it was time for juice #2. The same thing happened with the third, fourth, and fifth…the instructions mentioned to consume the last juice hour prior to bed, but I was still trying to get down the last one past my bedtime. I fought sleep so I could abide by the guidelines, but my eyelids came crashing down about 30 minutes later.
I noticed I still used the restroom excessively, but after the reddish-purplish juice, there was some discoloration to my urine. I chalked this up to the colors of the fruits and veggies. I also noticed that my “juice” was starting to get loose, and it was a very dark blackish color. It could have been a dark greenish color, but to be honest, I didn’t examine it too closely. I think this may already be TMI, but I wanted to provide all the facts of my experience.
To my surprise, at roughly the same time as the previous night, I woke up with excruciating pain behind my eye and on one side of my head. I didn’t want to take a chance of this lingering, so I had to take some medication to prevent a full-blown migraine again.
My Personal Experience: Day 3
Being able to see the light at the end of the tunnel is somewhat reassuring. That is, unless you are still full from the previous day when you wake up and still have a lingering headache. I managed to shuffle my feet for my morning walk of 10,000 steps and then begin my work day. It was all I could do to consume the juices for the day. I barely had any water because I felt like I was going to float away.
I didn’t make it to the last juice because the times got pushed further down, and I actually fell asleep with my laptop still on my lap because I was so exhausted.
The day was full of frequent trips to the bathroom, and I felt super bloated and just very uncomfortable the whole day.
I Did a Juice Cleanse: A Recap
When I woke up on Day 4 and was able to resume my regular meal plan, I started simple with one of my go-to’s—a BIG salad (think Seinfeld).
Surprisingly, I gained two pounds while on the juice cleanse, so I wouldn’t say this is a good tool for weight loss, per se. The headaches were a little troublesome, but I can’t say for certain it was due to the cleanse or something external (stress, hormones, etc.).
I also can’t say that any of the benefits mentioned were visible, such as glowing skin, hair, and nails. I did experience energy the first day but that soon fizzled away the second and third days. Oddly enough, this particular juice cleanse claims to reduce bloating, which definitely didn’t happen for me. I do feel like I was hydrated. Constantly. As in all day long I was drinking something. I do believe it allowed my organs a rest, which was one of the company’s selling points.
Would I try a juice cleanse again? Probably. But I am a glutton for punishment. I don’t think the issue I have is that I was hungry, because I didn’t even think about food at all. I just wish I could have done half the juices each day. Six juices in a single day seemed like a lot to me.
If you have tried a juice cleanse, which one did you try? What did you notice and how did you feel during and after? Share your experiences in the comments below.