Detox Diary: My 3-Day Juice Cleanse

Detox Diary: My 3-Day Juice Cleanse
Hi guys, its Allison from Team LC. The first time I heard about juicing was about four years ago. I had read about this age-old diet approach in several health books, including Fit for Life, Skinny Bitch, and Crazy Sexy Diet, to name a few—and it sounded almost too good to be true. Drinking freshly squeezed fruit and veggie juices will detoxify your body, give your skin a glow and boost your immune system? “No way,” I thought to myself. But when I started hearing about juice bars popping up all over the Southern California coast, I was tempted by the accessibility and popularity of this rumored miracle cleanse.

I decided to take my first dive into the world of juicing by attempting a 3-day pressed juice cleanse from my favorite neighborhood juice bar. There were ups and downs, moments of euphoria and moments of major irritability. Throughout the cleansing process, I documented what I was feeling and going through just so I could share my experience with all of you lovely LC readers. Without further ado, here is my 3-day detox diary…

Pre Cleanse:

  • I wanted to make sure my body didn’t go into extreme shock when I started to feed it only 6 bottled juices a day, so I did my homework before starting the cleanse. I read that it is best to eat a mostly vegan diet for three days before the cleanse, as well as the three days afterwards. So…
  • I stocked up on fruits and veggies, vegetable soup, lentils and brown rice, and even picked up some green juices to get my palette accustomed to the taste. I weaned myself off of my morning coffee and opted for green tea instead.
  • I also made sure to get 8 hours of sleep the night before I started my cleanse so I wouldn’t feel tired or groggy. That way, my coffee cravings wouldn’t creep up on me on the very first day.

Day 1:

  • I started my day by waking up at 7am and walking to the juice bar down the street to pick up my 6 juices and 2 flavored waters. Afraid of feeling exhausted during the day, I didn’t want to workout while cleansing. Since I usually head to the gym in the early morning before work, I decided that taking a brisk walk was a nice cardio substitute.
  • My first juice was a delicious blend of green veggies, apples, and lemon. This gave me tons of energy and I didn’t even miss my cup of coffee.
  • By about 3pm, my energy levels were starting to crash a bit and I felt like I needed something with protein. Luckily, my fourth juice was a mix of figs, vanilla bean, and almonds. The protein from this almond milk was filling and it gave me the boost that I needed to get through the rest of the day.
  • By about 5pm, I felt pretty darn good. My eyesight was clearer and I felt really proud of myself for not succumbing to the vegan cupcakes one of my fellow LC bloggers brought into the office (they were red velvet!).
  • I kept busy at night to stave off any sweet or salty cravings. After doing laundry, a little late-night blogging, and reading for a bit, it was already time for bed. I made sure to finish my last juice 2 hours before I settled in for bed so that I would sleep through the night with no disturbances. I gave myself a mental pat on the back and drifted off into a very deep sleep…

Day 2:

  • On day 2, I woke up before my alarm even went off feeling so refreshed and rejuvenated. I walked to pick up my day 2 juices, and instead of craving coffee or breakfast, I was excited to start my day with the green juice.
  • I figured out how to space out my juices perfectly. I learned from day 1 that I should drink one juice every 2 hours in order to have my last one finished 2 hours before I went to sleep. I enjoyed the taste of the fruits and veggies even more on the second day. I also noticed that my taste buds were more in-tune to the flavors that popped out in the different juices.
  • By about 2pm, I started to crave solid food. I was working on a project on Pinterest and in the future, I would NOT recommend going on any food blogs (or Pinterest) when you are cleansing. It was torture! I saw photos of blackberry crisps, margherita pizzas, and butternut squash ravioli. The magic feelings I had been experiencing from the cleanse suddenly disappeared and I realized I was starving. But was it enough to make me break my fast…? I grabbed my root veggie juice and by the time I finished it, my cravings had passed and I did my best to focus on anything but food.
  • When 5pm rolled around, I felt hungry again. I was noticing food all around me—restaurant advertisements, food photos on billboards on my drive home, I even felt a pang of jealousy when I saw people walking into my neighborhood Whole Foods. But I had come too far…I was almost done! I made sure to get to bed early in hopes that sleep would cure my solid food cravings.

Day 3:

  • I woke up on day 3 feeling rested and unaware of the hunger pangs I experienced the night before. My skin was glowing, my eyes were sparkling, and I felt light and lean. I was excited about having my green juice for breakfast and I couldn’t believe I was already on my last day of the cleanse…24 hours to go!
  • The day went by quickly and I felt so good that I almost extended my cleanse for another 2 days. My energy was good and my body had learned how to regulate energy levels while juicing.
  • That evening, I had no late-night cravings and I felt satisfied by my evening juices. In fact, I decided that I would walk to the juice bar for a green juice the next morning since I had come to love my routine so much.

Post Cleanse:

  • I felt so good after I completed my cleanse, and I even continued to drink juices in the morning for a few days afterwards. I stuck to a vegan diet for the 3 days after finishing the cleanse and eventually went back to my regular, healthy diet. But I definitely felt cleaner and gained a sense of accomplishment.

Pros & Cons:
Now that you’ve read my detox diary, here are some of the good and bad things I learned from my cleanse.

  • Cons:
    • Cleanses are a bit pricey. If you are trying to pinch your pennies one month, it might not be the time to splurge on a cleanse, which can range anywhere from $45 per day to $75 per day. Instead, look into buying your produce from local farmer’s markets and juicing yourself! Check out this kale smoothie recipe to get you started…
    • Bottled juice cleanses like the one I tried have a ton of sugar in them, according to Everyday Health,. Even though fresh fruit juice is natural, it will still send your energy levels on an insulin rollercoaster. This is why I crashed in the late afternoon! Having a protein drink like my almond milk will help regulate your blood sugar, but it is still not healthy to have this much sugar.
    • Working out is difficult. I couldn’t get my cardio fix because I didn’t have enough energy to do my regular workouts. If you remember my post about how to fuel your workout, you might remember that I love running, hot yoga and weight training. I also can’t stand missing a workout, so I felt a little rusty getting back into the swing of things after the cleanse.
    • Cleansing is not a solution for long-term weight loss. If you are looking to shed a few pounds permanently, then a juice cleanse is not the answer. Drinking juice all day might help you to loose some water weight, according to The Huffington Post, but you might gain those pounds back post-cleanse when your body starts retaining calories from solid food again. Instead, give one of Lauren’s fitness + meal plans a try. These are my favorite: Get Fit Plan, Bikini Boot Camp, and 7 Days to Skinny Jeans Plan.
  • Pros:
    • I have never felt so hydrated! When I wasn’t drinking one of my juices, I was drinking a ton of water. I made a goal to finish a 1.5 liter bottle of water each day in order to feel full and flush out any extra toxins. This probably has a lot to do with the glow I saw in my skin on the third day.
    • Cleansing gives your body a rest from digestion, according to Livestrong. Our bodies are used to breaking down and digesting food all day, every day, for years and years. So once in a while, it’s nice to give your body a break by only consuming nutrient-rich fluids. Especially if you are a junk food junkie, a cleanse will help reset your system and flush out tons of toxins. (Just make sure to eat mostly vegan in the days leading up to your cleanse or else you might be in for a pretty harsh change.)
    • Because most bottled, pressed juice cleanses use fruit juice along with vegetable juice, I found that I wanted nothing to do with sweets when I finished day 3 of my cleanse. My sugar cravings were gone!
    • One of the biggest benefits I found from completing my cleanse was that it motivated me to stay on a healthy path for weeks afterward. Mentally, I was so rejuvenated by the 3 days I spent cleansing that the last thing I wanted to do was throw it all away. I continued to replace my morning coffee with green juices and green tea (sometimes even an apple), and I noticed major negative side effects whenever I ate something unhealthy, like pizza or cookies (oops!).

Overall, my juice cleanse was a positive experience for me and I plan on trying one again sometime soon. I think that cleansing for 3 days is plenty of time—I would not suggest doing a longer cleanse because, according to Women’s Health, your body goes into starvation mode after about 4 days. The next time I cleanse, I plan on going to a gentle yoga class or spending a few minutes in a steam room to sweat out additional toxins. But enough about me! Let’s hear what you have to say…

Have you ever tried a juice cleanse? If you have, what was your experience? If not, is it something you would be willing to try?

Leave your stories, reviews, and experiences below. I’d love to see what you guys have to say about “getting juiced!”

xx
Allison
Team LC

P.S. If you’re ready to start juicing, I suggest trying one of the 3-day cleanses from Kreation Juice. All of the juices are delicious and energizing! It’s my personal favorite. Kaeng Raeng also makes a great detox cleanse. Read more about it by clicking here.

Sources: WellAndGoodNYC.com, EverydayHealth.com, WomensHealthMag.com, Livestrong, Huffington Post

Photo: Allison Norton for LaurenConrad.com
Categories: Allison Norton, Health
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  • Melissa Panici

    I have never tried a juice cleanse but it sounds like a good idea so I would give it a try!

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  • Alyssa

    I wish I lived near a juice bar to do this kind of cleanse! Most of the people I know who have done cleanses haven’t made it through and were VERY irritable. I want to give this one a try. I have the worst sweet tooth, so it would probably benefit me if it will lessen my sugar cravings! Thanks for the incite. :)

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  • Lenka

    I’m really glad you posted about your cleanse because I failed the first time I tried to do a 3-day cleanse, read my blog post here: http://www.healthyfitgoddess.com/2012/08/juice-cleanse-fail.html . I really want to try to do it again and I think one of the problems the first time was that I did a tough CrossFit workout in the morning of the first day of the cleanse and I felt like I couldn’t replenish myself. I already eat a very healthy, mostly vegan diet, so this shouldn’t be that hard me! Thanks for inspiring me to try again!

  • Ambi s

    I love the LC blog, but from a health perspective (from my knowledge as a medical student), there is absolutely no medical benefit to juice cleanses.

    In fact, that ‘kick’ you speak of is your body in ketoacidosis (this is not a normal bodily process), which is associated with renal problems and bad breath. Juicing means your body is not digesting fibre, which is important for a healthy gut.

    As a future doctor, think it’s important to point this out before readers go and splash out on lots of expensive juices!

    However, I’m glad to see you’ve stressed this is not a lifestyle choice, and merely a short-term plan if people did want to try it.

    Ambi xx

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  • Leanne

    Sounds really interesting! I use juicing to supplement my daily diet for additional vitamins. I always have a juice after working out too.

    Love from South Africa

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  • tiffany newman

    can i make my own juices

  • hooleywithaz

    i don’t think i would ever try a juice cleanse, although i do know some people who have done them. i would be more likely to replace a coffee with a juice, or to use one as a supplement to my diet.
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  • Rachel Trampel

    I have definitely thought about doing a juice cleanse, but I never know the right way to go about it. I would be willing to give it a try at least.

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  • Taanjaa

    Seems like you had a really good experience! Don’t know if i could ever do it!

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  • My Style Diary

    Very interesting post! Unfortunately a cleanse would be too expensive for me.. would there be a way to make them myself?

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  • Vee

    I have always wanted to try a juice cleanse, once I highly considered the lemonade cleanse.. That said, I have also heard of lot of negative feedback about these cleanse.. It’s nice to hear about a positive experience.

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    This is so encouraging! I’ve always wanted to try a juice cleanse, and based on your positive feedback I’m even more excited to try it! It’s not really in the cards financially at the moment, but hopefully sometime in the near future I can give it a go!

  • Chelsea Beck

    I did the BluePrint Cleanse around last November and loved it! The juices were delicious, not crazy with the sugars and I never felt tired. I was so hydrated, no headaches or drowsiness. I wish I had the funds to do the cleanse at least one day every week.

    Since then, I’ve bought a Breville juicer, but can’t seem to make anything taste as good as BPC does. I cannot wait to do another cleanse, but up it another level and exercise during it. I definitely recommend Blueprint!

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  • JennaLee

    I would love to do something like this. Is there any place that you know of that ships their smoothies? I am in upstate NY and there are no juice bars around me but I think my body could truly benefit from a day of no digestion.

  • Kelly

    Inspired like so many others by the “”Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead”" documentary, I decided to go ahead and try an juice fast for 3-5 days. I wen out and bout and juicer and all the fruits and veggies I would need to begin this. And seriously, I have felt the exact same things as stated by you above. I actually “”lol’d”" when I got to your day 2 bc it was the exact same thing. Day one was amazing. Couldn’t believe that juice would fill me up and satisfy me. Also. On day 2, I woke up before my alarm went off and was not one drop tired at that hour like I normally would be. I made my juices for the day and went off to work. Later on my way home is went it also went down hill. I felt like I was turning into a food monster and wanted something to freaking chew. But I powered trough it and survived.
    I am on the morning of my day three. I feel great. Like you said, no hunger pains like last night. I even made bacon for my Fianc

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  • Amanda McKinney

    juicing has become such an important part of my life!

    juicing shows your digestive system some love, helps you load up on energy-inducing nutrients, gives your skin a pretty glow, gives your cravings the middle finger, and helps your pants get a little looser. read more about those benefits here: http://amandafrances.com/whyjuice

  • TinCity

    This is a very informative article, but you should read the great reviews for the ACAI detox cleanse system on Amazon: http://amzn.to/19vv5xh – this is what help me may a great choice.

  • kas

    I’m absolutely hooked on juicing since I was introduced to it some years back as an alternative to buying juice at the supermarkets. I must admit I’ve thought of it as a cleanser.

    http://bowtrolwarning.com

  • zarahi

    Is the wrap that everyone is talking about that you buy or is it a self made wrap?

  • soufian yahyaoui

    You can lose weight by following some very nice and easy tips. I personally found them very beneficial. If you

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  • Rachel

    I always wanted to do a juice cleanse,but its so expensive. I tried juicing myself and I was so happy, was working great. Great alternative if you want cold pressed juices at a reasonable price try ourisfruit.com They advertise a $99 cleanse for 3 days which seems great. My friend told me about them, she said it was great but I haven’t tried it myself

    • http://dreamliveandrepeat.blogspot.com/ Ashley

      Thanks for sharing this- looking into it now! :)

  • http://dreamliveandrepeat.blogspot.com/ Ashley

    Thanks for the insight! I’ve been curious about trying a juice cleanse and you’ve given me a clearer picture of what happens on one!

    http://dreamliveandrepeat.blogspot.com/

  • Krishyl

    This is truly inspiring!
    You know what, I really want to try this out. But I am still doubtful if I can really make it since I have tons of work to do. And If I’ll go for detoxifying my body, I am afraid that I might not be able to do my work effectively (I might faint or something) since I am used to eat rice and viand all the time (3x a day). Will you be able to help me on how to start without sacrificing my workload? Thank you!

  • Bo Wong

    I’m on Day 10 of my juice cleanse and feel pretty amazing! My aim is to inspire others to do the same :) I’ve been so busy, been doing my normal gym workouts and the first three days are the worse you have to get over. I’m going to keep going as it seems really easy and my body and mind are loving it! I’ve lost 5Kgs so far and it’s also winter here, so if I can do anyone can. I have two of my guy friends doing it to that have never done one and they are also feeling great. One even sent me a message last night saying he had a random burst of energy and had to do dance do chin ups and pushups to get it out. You can read my 10 day blog here http://myorganiclife.info/featured/10-day-juicing-cleanse/ and along with your insightful article it might get others to give it a go :)

  • Krish

    Great article! Indeed, it is one of the best way to cleanse your body. What matters most is that both of your mind and body are conditioned.
    http://www.amchara.co.uk/juice-diet/

  • Happy Healthy Girl

    Juicing is always fun it keeps you refreshed, energetic and healthy. But it is important to follow a proper juice cleanse diet in which you take juices as well as some healthy meals. I recently tried a 5 day body detox diet plan and i really feel fresh. My mind is more creative and my skin has that glow =) If you want to try it too for five days then you can get your diet plan from http://www.stayhappynhealthy.com

  • Haifaa

    I love these kind of Articles But with my sorry i hate veggies and i don’t know How to drink them cause i hate their taste :/. But Overall love this article , so encouraging ! XoXo Haifaa

  • Elizabeth

    I’m on day 2 of a 3-day juice cleanse and after reading a bunch and talking to my doctor I totally agree with you, three days is really the minimum and maximum for a juice cleanse. Last night (end of day 1) was pretty hard but similar to your experience, I woke up this morning and I felt great! My skin was glowing and feels super soft and I felt like I had plenty of energy. Also, the green juices for some reason taste the best to me. The cleanse I’m on has an orange/red blend the first day, green the second day and purple the third day. The red tasted ok but you could definitly tell there were beets in it and I’m not a fan of beets. The green tastes great because all you’re really tasting is apples and maybe a little cucumber. I also enslaved my husband to do this with me and we even went to SpaWorld (http://www.spaworldusa.com/) yesterday to sweat out the toxins. Having him by my side through the ups and downs is definitly key.

  • http://capturinginspirations.com/ Catherine Carrigan

    Reading your experience about your cleanse is very encouraging! I’m not even through day one and I’m struggling! I do feel my love growing for more fruits and veggies though – so I think any experience where you embrace plant food is a good one :)

    http://capturinginspirations.com/2014/04/11/time-for-a-juice-cleanse/

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