Sunday, The Day Before Starting the Juice Cleanse
I have decided to do a three day juice cleanse. Why? Numerous reasons, including that I have Crohn's Disease and I'm tired of how my stomach feels... no matter what I seem to put into it (I've tried eliminating this, that and the other, and the pain is still there). I've spent a lot of time reading about juice cleanses and their benefits and it really made me want to give it a try. Dr. Oz has a good video here on the benefits of doing a short juice cleanse like this. I'm doing this hoping that it will help my stomach feel better.
At first I planned to do the Joe Cross three day juice cleanse. He is the guy from the "Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead" documentary. If you are not familiar with it I highly recommend watching it. It's about his quest to get healthy by going on a juicing diet. But while doing my research online I also came across (from Dr. Oz's site) the Suja Juice three day juice cleanse. It's a pre-bottled juice cleanse where they send you everything for the whole three days. Super easy! Dr. Oz also has a cleanse out, but it's not a juice one. It's more of a three day smoothie cleanse.
Anyway, I printed the Joe Cross three day juice cleanse grocery list. I went to the store and started filling the basket. I wanted to make sure all of the produce was organic, of course, because the goal is to get any toxins out of your system (not add more in with non-organic produce). Wow! I could not believe how this basket was filling up and the costs were mounting. All in all it was going to cost around $140 to buy everything that was on the list and ensure it was all organic. My husband and I both looked at each other and agreed that it was a lot of money. Not only was it not costing me much less than the Suja Juice cleanse, but I started thinking of how much time I was going to spend doing this for three days. All I could picture was three days in the kitchen all day long cutting, washing, juicing, cleaning the blender, etc. Six times per day. A lot of work!
So I decided at that moment to put the produce back (and we did put it all back in its proper place) and to order the Suja Juice cleanse. I started to order it from their site and was blown away that the shipping charges were $109. Wow! I was going to say "forget this all together." I was not going to spend $109 on shipping charges. Then I took a look at Amazon.com and sure enough, Suja Juice themselves offer the same three day juice cleanse on there. With free shipping! Yes, free shipping if I order from them through Amazon, or $109 if I order through the company website. Of course, I ordered through Amazon.com. I paid $175, although I have seen the price fluctuate from $165 to $180, depending on the day of the week (and it always has free shipping and is being sold on there by the Suja Juice company).
The box of juices ships out to you via UPS and takes two days. It arrives all packed in dry ice and everything is still very cold. All the juices are freshly made, quickly shipped, and have a short expiration date on them. Below is the picture of what arrived via UPS. I am really looking forward to starting the cleanse in the morning and hoping that it helps my stomach to feel better. I will be writing about my daily experience. Oh, and I was at my GI doctor two weeks ago and spoke to her about this, just to make sure it was something that was okay for me to do. The Joe Cross book suggested that if you have Crohn's Disease you should get your doctor's approval. She gave the thumbs up to give this a try and see how my stomach feels. Until the first juice tomorrow...
(Note: All bottles will be recycled, as well the box they were sent in.)
Monday - Day One
I didn't want to start this juice cleanse on the weekend. We had plans and they did not include me not being able to dine out (or eat solid foods for the most part). So after receiving my juice in the mail I planned on getting started on Monday. I woke up early this morning excited to get started. The juice cleanse comes with a little informational booklet that explains what order to drink the juices in. It also says to start your day with a glass of warm water with apple cider vinegar or lemon. I started with the warm water and apple cider vinegar. Surprisingly, it tasted better than I thought it would, although I kind of felt a burning sensation as it went down my throat. Now at 8:30 I'm having my first bottle of juice, which is the one called Glow. It is made from 2 apples, 6 celery stalks, 1/2 a cucumber, a handful of spinach, 3 collard greens, 3 kale leaves, and a sprig of mint. Being that I like veggies more than I like fruit, I like the taste of this juice. It's very "green" and healthy tasting, but what stands out the most to me is the cucumber.
10:30 am - Although I woke up with my stomach feeling bad (common), it actually feels pretty good right now. I'm a little hungry, but it is time to have my mid-morning juice. This one is called Fuel and it is made with 9 carrots, 1 orange, 1 apple, a slice of pineapple, 1/2 a lemon, and an inch of turmeric. It's really good! It tastes like a nice combination of carrots and a hint of orange and pineapple. Yum!
1:15 pm - Just had the Purify juice for lunch, which is made using 7 carrots, 1 apple, 2 celery stalks, 1/4 of a cucumber, 1/2 a beet, and 1/2 a lemon. I liked it! I could really taste the beet in there even though there was only half of one in there. At this point I'm a little hungry, but my stomach is feeling pretty good today. And it seems that I have to pee every 15-20 minutes.
3:15 pm - Just had the Fiji juice, which contains 2 apples, 6 celery stalks, 1/2 cucumber, a handful of spinach, 3 collard greens, 3 kale leaves, a squeeze of lemon, and a hint of ginger. This one is just "okay." To me it's a little spicy for some reason, I believe it's the ginger (and I don't care for spicy). But it's down and I'm moving on.
5:30 pm - I'm a little on the hungry side, but my stomach is feeling great! No pains, discomfort, or bloating that I typically live with. That makes me happy. Their plan states that if you are hungry you can eat some fruits or veggies. From the start I had planned on having a baked potato each day at dinner. Earlier today I put the potato in the crock pot so it would be ready now. I had my baked potato and the Green Supreme juice, which is made from 5 apples, 1 bunch of kale, and 1/2 a lemon. This juice was pretty good and on the refreshing side. I feel full now after a baked potato and the bottle of juice.
8:00 pm - It seems like every time I turn around it's time for another bottle of juice! That's probably a good thing, because then you never become really hungry. End of the day, they recommend you have your last bottle 2-3 hours before bedtime, so I just had the Vanilla Cloud. This one is considered to be kind of like a "dessert" drink. It's made with 1/2 a coconut's meat, a spoonful of honey, 12 almonds, and a pinch of cinnamon, vanilla, and nutmeg. I liked it! I thought it was pretty tasty and it did seem like a dessert. With the exception of this one having honey, all the Suja Juices in this cleanse are vegan. You did read that if you want to avoid the honey you can swap out the Vanilla Cloud for another flavor when placing the order.
Day one is in the books. Overall I felt like I had more energy than usual and my stomach actually felt really good today. The juices all taste pretty good. I love how convenient it is to just grab it from the fridge and shake, rather than washing produce, juicing, and doing clean-up six times per day. I've been a little hungry here and there, but for the most party I have felt fine. It seems like every time I'm feeling hungry it is time to have another bottle. Two more days to go...
Tuesday - Day Two
I woke up this morning with the stomach discomfort that I so often wake up with. So nothing was new there. I'm not going to list each drink again, because day two and three is essentially going to be a complete repeat of day one. The juices and food stay the same. The only thing that may change is how I feel. I went to bed at a decent time last night, but it's only 9:30 in the morning and I feel really tired. I feel like I need a nap and the day is only just beginning. Also, I feel really cold. This is highly unusual for me, because it's rare that I feel cold (plus we are still in the days of temperatures that are 88-90 degrees). I will probably take a short nap to try to lose some of this tired feeling. 2:00 pm - I did take a 30-minute nap. This afternoon I'm feeling tired, hungry, and I have a slight headache (caffeine withdrawal). 7:15 pm - The last couple of hours I have had more energy, but I also had my plain baked potato. Coincidence, I don't know. I did go through a couple of hours earlier today of feeling really cranky. Going to have my final drink of the night here soon. Looking forward to tomorrow being the last day.
Wednesday - Day 3
8:30 am - I had the most restless night sleep last night. Wow. That doesn't usually happen to me, but I was tossing and turning all night. And I woke up so hungry! I'm glad that this is the third day. I drank my water/apple cider vinegar this morning, followed a little while later by the first juice of the day. I'm already planning what I want to eat tomorrow and looking forward to it. 3:00 pm - I went through a crabby period again this afternoon. And I've pretty much felt hungry the entire day. My stomach, hunger aside, feels pretty good and I do have more energy today. 10:30 pm - Today I think I felt hungry nearly the entire day. It just seemed to linger all day long. I'm headed to bed now and so looking forward to eating in the morning! But... I made it! Yay!
Thursday - Day 4 (post cleanse)
The juice cleanse is behind me and I can eat again. Yay! Overall I can say that my stomach felt great for the most part while juicing. I woke up each morning with it not feeling good (typical), but that went away early on. I also had more energy most of the time, although there was a couple of hours each afternoon when I felt really crabby (hangry!). I had periods of feeling up, then feeling more down, but overall I had more energy and my stomach felt good throughout the three days. My stomach went down 1 inch and I lost 6 pounds. During the three days I only had the six bottles of juice per day, one plain baked potato (no skin), water, and some tea.
If you are going to do something like this it is a good idea to try to get someone else to do the cooking for your family for those three days (or make the meals ahead of time). I planned ahead to make two meals that I'm not a fan of (but they are) and sent them out to Moe's one night. If you are hungry it's challenging to stand there and prepare your family a meal and not be able to eat it. If you are doing the cooking (as I did), I recommend drinking your juice about 15 minutes prior to doing the cooking, so you are not as hungry.
Using the pre-bottled juice cleanse makes it quite convenient, and even something you can do if you work out of the home (I work at home). But I can say that I had to pee every 20 minutes, so be prepared to be near the restroom if you are doing this cleanse outside of the home.
Doing this cleanse was easier than I thought it would be, but during the last 1.5 days there was periods of lingering hunger. Overall though, I'm glad that I did it. The whole reason that I did this was to see if it helps my stomach to feel better. It did during the cleanse, but time will tell as to whether or not it does in the following days as well.
Pictured below is all the juices you drink in one day, in the order they recommend you drink them, along with the information guide they send with the juices.