10 things I learned while being on a juice cleanse

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Two weeks ago, I embarked on my first ever juice cleanse. I was really excited about it, and all the juices arrived beautifully packaged and organized with pamphlets and guides on which juices to take on each day. The pack included day-specific tips, information and supplements. Here’s what I learned, and what I took from the whole experience. Note that I used Juice Revolution for the quality of their juices, as they extract the juice using a state of the art hydraulic  cold press juicer, which I learned allows them to retain the highest possible levels of nutrients. They imported their press from the US in Jan this year, it’s the 1st of its kind in Africa, used by all the big and famous cold press juice companies in the States. I was not paid to do this cleanse nor was I paid to write this blog post. The following views are my own and not those of Juice Revolution. Here’s what I learned!

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1. Day 1 and 2 are a bit tough. You are never hungry, but coming ‘down’ from refined sugar and caffeine was tough. I felt a bit… spaced out. I was really glad that I started my cleanse over a weekend because on day 1, all I wanted to do was couch it – which I did. And I went to bed early. I didn’t feel nauseated or hungry, I just felt… weird. On day 2 I had the odd piercing headache, but nothing hectic. I also skipped a juice because I was unorganized, and had my first food craving. Do NOT skip a juice, you will want to eat your own family.

2. By day 3 you feel completely normal, just with more energy and your caffeine cravings are a thing of the past. I don’t crave or want coffee at all anymore – it’s bizarre. You wake up feeling awake, and you have much more energy at night. I usually have a dip in energy at around 3pm every day, and I didn’t have any fatigue while I was juicing – nothing after day 2.

3. You can still exercise and go to gym. Hundreds of athletes and rugby players use these juicing programs, so please don’t think that you won’t manage. I still did my treadmill sessions and took the dogs for long walks every day. Juice Revolution encourages you to keep moving, so do!

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4. You might crave salt. By day four I really wanted Pretzels – something I’d never enjoyed before. I don’t know why I was so after the salt. I didn’t want sweets or coffee or bread or pasta or cheese or anything like that, but I was ready to shove a teaspoon of salt in to my mouth. This craving was only once, and lasted maybe an hour. The juices are all incredibly delicious, except the Super Juice because I don’t like lime. Graeme (and Ben) freakin loved those, so that’s where those went. People will want to drink all your juices, so prepare to stand your ground.

5. In MY opinion, it’s okay to cheat even when you do it by accident. We don’t realize how often we snack during the day without even noticing. Like when I pour the kids’ cereal, I’ll always grab a piece or two. Or when I dish up food for them, I’ll end up licking spoons or pinching a cucumber wedge. Of course the entire point is to cleanse your system, but don’t beat yourself up if you slip up – just keep going. You are still a winner.

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6. A lot of people asked about my erm “metabolism” or “movements”. Can we just be straight and call it a colon? Some people keep going as usual, and some people get a bit blocked up for a few days while your system re-adjusts. My COLON emptied every day and I felt super light the entire time, so no issues or horror stories there. Your stools are a lot lighter, and have more erm… texture. But you’re not going to be sitting in your office cubicle with the runs for 7 days straight – don’t worry.

7. You will lose weight. Your body isn’t working as hard to digest food, so it starts digesting your thighs and ass instead. NOT complaining. I lost 2.8kg in 7 days, and my jeans are really loose around my thighs. On day 3 you wake up with a flat stomach. I put on about 500g again since I stopped juicing, so my ‘real’ weight loss from juicing was about 2kg, if we’re being honest.

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8. You are never hungry. For real, I only drank half my juices on some meals. I don’t understand why you are never hungry, but I learned that your body is being nourished by vitamins and nutrients, which your body sucks up like a happy sponge. When your body is being ‘fed’ by vitamins, it does not need to be fed by empty foods like mac and cheese that serve practically no nutritional benefit, but leave us feeling full non the less. I felt satisfied every day as long as I took my juices within the recommended times so that my blood sugar levels didn’t drop.

9. Your eyes and skin will brighten. I literally always feel tired and like I don’t get enough sleep. I put eye drops in on most mornings, especially if I’m going to see clients. I also get break-outs sometimes, so getting ready in the morning for me is a bit of a mission. By day three, my eyes had cleared up and my skin got very supple and plump, like I’d been drinking 10 liters of water every day. You drink more water while you’re juicing (I think the supplements made me thirsty too) so you’re boosting your body in every direction.

10. The main thing that I learned is that I want to keep juicing. I’ve ordered a “Lifestyle Box” from Juice Revolution (starting today) to use as a meal replacement every day. Sometimes lunch, sometimes supper – depending on how busy we are. Their lifestyle box is R390 plus VAT for 10X 500ml juices. By drinking just ONE of these juices, I’ll be filling my daily 5 portion requirement of fruit and vegetables. The convenience of grabbing a juice ‘meal’ out the fridge and sipping on it while I work is a luxury that I’m not ready to let go of. Below is the Lifestyle Box menu for the two Boxes that they offer. Ive’ ordered Box 1 today, and below that is the option for Box 2. They have an online shop, and apparently my order’s gonna be here tomorrow! (happy dance)

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So that’s it! I’m super in to juicing now. I personally find it to be affordable, with excellent health and weight loss benefits. I’d much rather drink a vitamin dense juice every day than swallow a handful of pills, so this is my new vibe. You can find out more over at Juice Revolution’s site. They deliver all over South Africa. Please let me know if you have any questions, I’ll answer them from my personal experience! Mail Fiona from Juice Revolution – she’s amazing and also really nice > fiona@juicerevolution.co.za

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