Juice Cleanse Experience

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All in the spirit of trying new things and exploring how this juicing industry has managed to catch the habits of millions and catapulted into hundred million dollar industry, I started my 1 day juice cleanse.

From detox chains, Buda Juice and Greenhouse Juices in every corner of the PATH from grocery stands to pop-up shops within quick serve restaurants to boutique juicing shops, how did I pick my service provider? Cold-press juices in my opinion doesn’t always taste very good, the less calories it has (the more green), the less tasty. Before committing to 8 bottles of this stuff as the only thing jolting my taste buds for the day, I should have tried them out more carefully. However, since Greenhouse Juices’ 1-day detox was available for purchase at the charity auction, my “trying something new” is contributing to a “good cause” (Children’s charities in Toronto).

After scolding me for not having pre-ordered my crate the day before, the staff at Greenhouse finally gave me the pack as well as a couple of letters outlining the order to drink things in and some encouraging words for the detox. A letter from a Naturopathic Doctor suggesting that I make a “love and leave” list and alter my diet for one week to 10 days before and after the cleanse. Detox T-1: Ate a greasy sandwich in the morning from Panago that made me sick all day (definitely a “leave”) and Detox T-2: at a pool club sipping on drinks all afternoon (“LEAVE”).

So I didn’t exactly start the resetting process right, but maybe this one day change will shock my body, curb my cravings and help me become healthy again? Not too likely. However, I am encouraged by the meditation like prose of the cleanse, “to help peel back layers of excess” and see how much my body really needs in terms of food substances.

Detox start:

I first tried to chug the 500 ml bottle of Clean-Zing which tasted like a lot of lemon in filtered water and a bit of spicy cayenne. It was super hard to drink and I don’t believe I’d finished the last drop until late in the afternoon.

However, it was sour enough and reset my palette so that when I had the formal breakfast juice: East of Eden (filled with Romaine, Kale, Celery, apple and Lemon), it tasted better, but still quite sour.

By late morning, before taking my booster shot of E3 Live, I went to grab a container of cucumber slices (100 Calories). It’s true, the non-juice element to this may seem like a bit of cheating, but the woman at Greenhouse did say carrots and cucumbers were allowed. Better that than a slice of chocolate with equivalent calorie count.

I’d read online (on Yelp) that the booster shot were like “tequila” shots, and I indeed needed some Brazil Nut milk to help chase it down. The E3 Live one tasted like dirt…

The Brazil Nut Milk had a subtle sweetness from the Vanilla that was actually quite appetizing. It also has the most caloric count, 400 Cal vs. the 80-140 Cal of other bottles. The slight fattiness also made me crave the usual meaty fatness in foods, sherried lobster bisque and chocolates. It was definitely a hard walk back from lunch looking and smelling the aromatic “normal people” food around me.

Upon coming back from lunch, I found this message from one of my colleagues in my inbox:

juice fasting

(verb) a crazy person who eliminates all food from their diet and only drinks juice. and then when you call them on the phone nothing they say makes sense because all they can think about is eating food. and sometimes they speak about cleansing their colon, which is always lovely to hear.

“shannon called me i didn’t make sense because i am juice fasting and i cleansed my colon and i have to interview. haha ha hahha. and i can’t stop thinking about food. how was your new years?”

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=juice%20fasting

THIS IS CRAZY! I am not hungry! I actually didn’t feel quite hungry. But all that juice chugging motion and runs to the bathroom has made the process quite fatiguing.

Time to keep my mind focused on the healthy outcome with some light research. Another colleague thought I was juice “fasting” all week, to which I said, “there must be way too little calories in this diet to maintain it healthily for a week.” However, upon perusing the Greenhouse Juice website for a while, I couldn’t find any of the nutritional facts. Labels are a must these days no? Instead I found reading material on house juice cleansing started, its strong celebrity proponent, Gwyneth Paltrow and some backlash saying that it has 2x the amount of calories as the raw vegetables it is juiced out of.

I e-mailed the staff at Greenhouse and later in the afternoon, after my 10th attempt to sip through “The Good” one of the most green (and not tasty) drinks I’ve had, I got a reply:

Hi Anna,

Thanks for checking in! Please see below for the calorie count of the cleanse, as well as the individual juices included.

We hope your cleanse is going well!  You are almost through the day!

Best,

Annika and The Greenhouse Team

The Good, 500ml= 80 kcal

Deep Roots, 500ml = 185 kcal

Brazil Nut Milk, 500ml= 400 kcal

Chia Seed Hydrator, 500ml= 110 kcal

CleanZing 500ml= 70 kcal

East of Eden 500ml= 140 kcal

One day of the Standard Cleanse is approximately 1000 calories.

Finally, an answer! That’s half of the calorie daily recommended calorie intake. Even with my banana in the morning and cucumbers at lunch I’m still below 1,200 Calories (probably ~1/2 of my daily intake). And I am almost done.

They ran out of the raw aloe booster so I took a really spicy ginger one in the afternoon before finishing the rest of my milk and heading to hot yoga.

MISTAKE. The bikram hot yoga class with floor heating was actually so hot, and I felt so weak that I left 15 mins before the end to very easily this time chug my juice. I did reap the detoxing benefits though as I’m sure I’ve sweated a bucket or ~2L of what I drank in juice already. The Deep roots juice went down very easily and smooth, a real chug, and it was actually quite sweet. By the time I finished my Chia Seed Hydrator, I was ready to pass out as my total day calorie count was probably negative given the barre class I took in the morning, and hot yoga at night.

Overall experience: I was left feeling pretty good this morning, my body functioned well during reformer pilates and I am no longer hungry midday. Knowing my body can run on very little shows for sure that it doesn’t need all of that excess and treats once in a while shouldn’t become a habitual part of my diet.

Juice cleanses are a good way to reset, more mentally, in my opinion. Throughout my day, I’d never felt so happy about eating a cucumber! Let’s see if I can keep up the good eating habits in the summer cocktail, party and patio months!

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