Last week my hubby and I embarked on an exciting challenge together – we completed a 3-day juice cleanse with Raw Juice Guru! Being blessed with healthy metabolisms, we’re able to enjoy all kinds of foods without working hard to stay slim. Unfortunately this means that we often overlook eating healthy and staying active – taking advantage of our bodies and long-term health. Luckily, we’re still young and it’s not too late to change our habits!
So we’re making it our priority in 2013 to eat healthier (with rewards of course) and stay active in 2013 – kicking it off with a shiny new gym membership and a juice cleanse. I’ve been following Raw Juice Guru on Twitter for a while and keep hearing great things from other bloggers and media who’ve tried it.
A “juice feasting cleanse” involves replacing all of your meals with freshly-made, cold-pressed vegetable and fruit juices. By skipping solid foods for a period of time, your body conserves energy and heals itself on a cellular level. Some people go into it hoping to loose weight, increase energy, recover from illness or heal ailments – I’m interested in kick-starting a healthier lifestyle and resetting my metabolism to absorb nutrients more efficiently. The benefits are truly impressive.
After a few emails with the Guru herself, Eliane Bejjani, I knew I was making the right choice. Eliane is passionate about all things health and fitness and a true raw food chef – she assured me that the 3-day juice cleanse would be easier than I thought and we’d feel great afterwards – so off we went!
Pre-Cleanse: We described our goals, concerns and needs to Eliane via email so that she could customize our juice menus each day. She instructed us to eat only raw fruits and veggies the day before the cleanse and of course, no caffeine or alcohol, just lots of water. As someone who admittedly doesn’t eat enough fruits and veggies, this day was pretty hard for me, but great preparation for the cleanse.
Day 1: As promised we awoke to two coolers of fresh juices on our doorstep! Juices are cold-pressed in the wee hours of the morning and delivered between 4 and 9am – of course you can specify the timing that works best for you – even if that’s in the evening. The coolers were labelled with our names and contained different varieties of juices (6), two elixirs and one detox rooibos tea. Everything in environmentally friendly glass bottles.
Just to give you an idea of the menu, these were my Day 1 juices:
- Juice 1: romaine, celery, cucumber, kale, parsley, lemon, apple
- Juice 2: lemon, filtered water, cayenne pepper, raw coconut nectar
- Juice 3 (elixir): aloe vera
- Juice 4: apple, kale, fennel, lemon, ginger, carrot, dandelion
- Juice 5: beet, carrot, lemon, ginger
- Juice 6 (elixir): chlorophyll
- Juice 7: apple, kale, fennel, lemon, ginger, carrot, dandelion
- Juice 8: romaine, celery, cucumber, kale, parsley, lemon, apple
Each bottle was labelled and drank in order every 2 hours or so; the rooibos tea can be enjoyed anytime as well as lots of water. The menu changed slightly each day, with repeats every now and then. Tom’s juices were always a few ingredients different than mine based on his specific needs. They tasted so fresh and flavourful – a testament to cold-pressing the fruits and veggies with their skins, avoiding the oxidation that lowers their potency and nutritional value. I enjoyed all of the juices except for those with beets, but I chugged those down anyway because beets are powerful antioxidants (I’ve just never liked beets).
How did I feel? I definitely felt tired on Day 1, but luckily I was able to work from home to adjust. I had a slight headache, but surprisingly no hunger pangs. Lots of healthy trips to the bathroom and a good night’s sleep. We left the empty bottles in the coolers outside before bed for exchange the next day.
Day 2: I woke up with a thick film on my tongue and bloodshot eyes. Slightly concerned, I emailed Eliane to make sure this was a normal side-effect. She assured me that everyone dispels toxins in different ways and this was perfectly normal (albeit a little gross). A quick tongue scraping and a few eye drops later, I was feeling great and on with my day. I definitely felt more energy today, perhaps even more than normal – Tom experienced heightened mental clarity and focus in his work. Still not feeling hungry, but definitely battling the craving to chew and fall back into old snacking habits. Overall a great day!
Day 3: We made it to the last day! In addition to enjoying the juices, we loved how easy it was to forget about food planning and cooking for a while. I still experienced the film on my tongue, but my eyes were clear and my energy was normal. Eliane indicated that light exercise would be fine at this point, but we avoided it since this is our first cleanse and we didn’t want to push ourselves too hard. We clinked our glasses together at 9pm to celebrate our last juice and the end of our 3-day juice feasting cleanse!
WE DID IT!!!
Post-Cleanse: The day after the cleanse, we were told to stick to just raw fruits and veggies again – a pizza might send your system into shock! We followed orders and looked forward to our first real meal.
Did I notice any changes? Physically, the changes felt minimal, although I’m sure a lot more is going on internally that I’m not aware of. While I didn’t do this for weight loss, I shed 4 pounds and haven’t gained it back yet (6 days of solid meals later). For us, the biggest challenge and reward was the mental hurdle. We feel proud to have accomplished this cleanse together – beating our cravings and confident that we can make healthier choices going forward. In the days since, we’ve indulged ourselves once or twice, but we’re definitely making healthier choices and seeking balance in our meals. Last night we shared a bowl of baby carrots instead of chips while watching TV! It’s the little things…
I’m back at the gym this week and feeling more powerful than ever. I have a long way to go in terms of my endurance, specifically within regards to cardio, but I’m excited to work on it! So if your New Year’s resolution related to health or fitness, consider a Raw Juice Guru cleanse to get the ball rolling. Eliane is a wealth of knowledge and you can seek more information on her website, Twitter or via email.
If you shop for organic produce, you know that healthy choices aren’t cheap – well, neither is a juice cleanse, but it’s worth it if you’re able to afford it! You can choose from a 1-day cleanse all the way to 28 days – check out the prices (taxes, glass deposit and delivery are extra). I would recommend starting small for your first time and working your way up if you choose to cleanse again. I can see myself doing a juice cleanse annually after the holidays and would probably opt for the 5-day cleanse next time around.
Such an empowering experience! Happy Juicing