A while back I did a juice detox…and this week I was invited to take part in another one. Disclaimer: I didn’t pay for this detox, but my comments are freely my own. So, the Lucky You Cleanse, is a five-day deal where you consume nothing but freshly pressed organic juices and coconut water, and a whole stack of water.
The deal: 6 x juices, plus a shot of aloe vera, are delivered to your door each morning for 5 days. It begins with an aloe vera elixir followed by a green smoothie (banana and chia and kale…not so good on the page, but amazing in the gob). Then comes a range of fruit/veg juices that use high-nutrient ingredients only, plus a “spicy lemonade” made of lemons, cayenne pepper, apple, stevia and celtic sea salt. At 2pm you have a coconut water, one of the most alkaline beverages you can consume and things wrap up with a nut mylk (made from cashew nuts) which keeps you “full” till the morning.
Info sheets come each day giving a very comprehensive rundown of what the ingredients are doing. They’re either flushing or replenishing.
So, the bottom line: well, I’m starting day 5 just now and I feel pretty damn light and clear. But it was a tough haul. My body went through all kinds of detox stuff – sweats, nausea, needing to sleep at 8.30pm, furry tongue etc. It felt like there was stuff coming out that needed to come out.
Day 1: I’m hungry but determined. That night I was soooo tired and cold. And went to bed at 9pm. Which, you must understand, is unheard of for me. I slept 9.5 hours. I woke up sooo damn proud of myself. If there’s anything I get out of this, it’s the reminder that sleep cures all.
Day 2: I’m great in the morning and go to the gym. But by afternoon I’m headachy and achy. Again, cold and dopey at night and head to bed. 9 hours sleep!!! I tell everyone I know THAT I SLEPT 9 HOURS.
Day 3: No poo action. But plenty of wee. Granted, I’m drinking a lot of liquids, but seriously, this is non-stop. It’s also an odd colour. I won’t go further. I scrape my tongue and it ain’t pretty either. But by the afternoon, I’m feeling pretty damn good. I wound up taking a great herbal bowel stimulant (called Lower Bowel Stimulant, I know About Life sells it)…to get things flowing.
Day 4: I’m tasting every single cell in the juices. I’m not craving anything, really, except soup. I’d love some root vegetable soup. One thing I will say, at this juncture: I’m someone who gets very cold during winter. I’m what Ayervedic practitioners call a Vatta type (I get frenzied and too “airy” and need warm, heavy, grounding foods to function at my best, especially when it’s cold) . So I would recommend doing a detox like this in Spring.
Last night I MC’d a cocktail function with Nicole Richie. It had THE BEST FOOD I’VE EVER SEEN. I remained strong. It’s all cool. Someone in the crowd at the function asked me after I got off-stage if I put something in my eyes. He said they sparkled. This is good?!
Day 5: Here I am. Not hungry. But bloody looking forward to a red curry with brown rice. For some reason. But it will have to wait a few days.
And this is how a detox works. When your body isn’t consuming a constant influx of food that requires heavy digesting it turns to other sources of energy in your body, namely stored, releasing fat-stored “toxins” into the blood, which can then be eliminated through the blood, skin, pee, poo, and – oh dear – breath.When we are stirring up and loosening the old matter, if not enough leaves the body, we will feel detox symptoms.
I did this cleanse with my friends Sal, Soph and Angela Hywood. We spent the week discussing bowel movements and furry tongues. Which I secretly enjoyed.
Why do we need it? In the past we probably didn’t. Our bodies detox daily. But the environmental toxins of modern life -the pollutants, chemicals, other synthetic substances -are more than the average body can handle.The body doesn’t know what to do with foreign substances, so it will store them outside of the regular elimination system, so we don’t get poisoned. Those poisons start building up in our body fat….When fat is mobilized, anything that is fat-soluble should be mobilised, too.
For me, I find this kind of thing useful for creating a new baseline. I eat a lot. I eat good food, but occasionally I veer into sugar territory and get in a rut. It’s very hard to avoid living in a big city doing work that requires being out eating with others. So I can start to feel very toxic and stuck. I’ll also get cravings and become obsessed by food and need to break the cycle. So a juice detox kind of clears the decks and gets me back to good, honest eating again. One of the biggest things you learn doing this kind of detox is how often you do get up to eat something. I observed myself getting up, obstensibly to go check out the fridge, every time I encountered an obstacle with work. It was laughable. I lose my mojo for a moment and I immediately seek the comfort of food.
The bits about this detox to love: And there are several that make it stand out from competitors:
* Heidy Jameel, the fanatical and devoted owner is trained by the Ann Wigmore Institute. Ann Wigmore was the pioneer of wheatgrass across the US and a leading voice in pushing the mandate of eating food that is “alive” to maintain health and longevity.
* They hydraulically press the juices, rather than blend. This special extraction method means that the juices are extracted at low levels of heat, protecting the integrity of the juice and its vital enzyme content. A fresh-pressed juice is considered superior to one that is juiced using centrifugal force (which heats up the juice, therefore killing more enzymes). The gist with enzymes: we have a limited number of them in our body for digesting food etc, so we rely on food sources to provide as many as possible (and the more we run out of enzymes, the more we age). Heating food over about 50degrees (which is what normal juices can do) kills the enzymes, say raw food proponents.
*The cleanse is geared at nourishing our cells, not losing weight. Which is good. You don’t really do a juice detox to lose weight. I was impressed that Heidy uses superfoods like chia and kale, and anti-inflammatory aids like cayenne and aloe vera. Very good.
* You’re reminded constantly to CHEW the juices to get digestion going. This is really sound advice and I found myself doing it, if only to extend the experience of the “meal”.Cos, Christ, you want it to last by about day 3. I found the flavours much more intense and could feel my digestion kicking in as masticated away.
I think this is the real beauty of a juice detox – it takes things small-scale so that you can get more mindful of how you’re eating and what your body does/needs when it’s digesting. It instills appreciation and awareness.
* They reuse every bottle. Everything is recycled, which is GRAND.
* They use organic produce and deliver fresh every morning/night.
The cost for the 5-day cleanse is $350. Sadly, the service is only available in Sydney. Sorry. But feel free to contact Heidy and ask her for more info.
PS, Heidy also now runs juicing lessons from her Sydney kitchen.