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My Juice Cleansing Journal

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Disclaimer: This is not meant to be an instructional guide on how to perform a detox cleanse. I am not a dietitian or physician. I am simply sharing my experience with cleansing detox regimes. Consult a trained health professional before starting a cleansing regimen.

After my alternative health makeover in 2006 and before I had Marlie, I would regularly go on a cleansing regimen every 3-4 months. Sometimes I did 10 days, sometimes on 3 days depending how "junky" I felt inside. One of the greatest lessons you will learn from cleansing your system is how your body should feel...light and energetic (body), relaxed and clear (mind), peaceful and free (spirit). It is about connecting with your body.

Unfortunately, cleansing has become very popular on the crash diet circuit. I personally don't recommend using it as a weight loss solution. Yes, you will lose weight but most of that will be water weight that your body has been retaining in an attempt to flush out toxins. Your system will let the water go with the help of a internal cleanse as it naturally detoxes. You will also lose the built up waste that your body was storing (that can be a significant amount in people who have diets high in processed foods). While a cleanse is not meant to be a magic diet pill, it is effective as a jumping off point in a long-term weight loss program (lifestyle change) that includes good diet and exercise.

For me, cleansing is about giving my digestive system a break, ridding my body of toxins and other nasty stuff, and resetting my immune system. I immediately notice the difference in my skin, which is your body's largest organ and main filter. Pimples and other skin conditions can be signs that an internal cleanse is needed.

I do several things when I am on a cleansing regimen:
  • I ease into it. I eat lightly a couple of days before I start so I don't shock my system by suddenly taking in only liquids. I avoid foods that tax the digestive system like starches, simple carbohydrates, refined sugars, and fatty meats.
  • I write out my regimen on a calendar so I can stick with it. I also plan my cleansing around my social calendar so I am not tempted to eat at parties, weddings, etc...
  • I take it easy. The 800-1200 calories/day I get from drinking liquid fruits and vegetables is enough to fuel me, but not to run a marathon. I do not exercise while I am cleansing.
  • I gently break the fast. I don't go gobble a hamburger and milkshake the day after the cleansing period is over. I slowly incorporate solids back into my diet starting with fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts, dairy, then finally meat.
  • I take probiotics afterward to restore the balance of good bacteria in my digestive system.
This round of cleansing lasted three days. As usual, I was very hungry the first day. I had to keep telling myself that it's all in my head. I drink water when the hunger intensifies. The first night, I literally dream about food. I read somewhere that this is common. I feel better the next morning. The second day is hard only because I still have to make regular meals for Marlie, and I have to stop myself from licking the almond butter from my fingers out of habit. The upside is that Marlie is loving the juices we make and drinks it up and asks for more. Love her! Some of my favorite juice combos are: apple-beet-carrot-orange, sweet potato-celery-ginger-orange, and pineapple-lemon-beet. By day 3 I am feeling sublime...hunger has dissipated, energy is up, and my stomach has shrunk. I know if I want this feeling to last, that I have to eat wholesome foods. I'm not perfect though. I am going to eat pizza and cupcakes occasionally, and when I overdo it I can always cleanse.

photo credit: Chelle's View
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.

7 comments:

Maureen said...

Interesting! I've never done a cleanse, but have considered it frequently. It's interesting to hear that you don't feel hungry by the 2nd day. How do you decide how long you do it for (3 vs 12 days)? Also, what type of juicer do you use and do have a go-to place for juice recipes?

angie said...

I've done a few cleanses and they make me feel so much better. Great tips to ease into it and keep a journal/calendar!

Debbie said...

I've never done one. I am sure I should and I only read great things about it.

Brandy said...

Where do you get the juice recipes from?

Jessica said...

I've never done a cleanse, but I would like to someday. I love your regimen. What type of juicer do you use?

Kim said...

I'm so glad you wrote this post. I've asked a few people about cleansing they've done and some of the suggestions scared me a bit. This sounds really do-able and realistic. Hey and anything that might get more fruits and veggies into my kids I'm all for!

luvlymskrissy said...

I've never done a cleanse but I am thinking about trying one.

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