I decided to do a 3-day juice cleanse / detox / diet (whatever-you-want-to-call-it) this week because a) timing was good – my housemates are away so very little chance of food temptations; b) I wanted to see what the fuss was about; c) I needed something new for the week, and d) well, why the hell not?! 😉
So last week I spent a huge amount of time researching into this whole thing and was absolutely gobsmacked at the cost of it! Some of these 3-day detoxes start at about AED700 for just 3 days worth of JUICES! I barely spend AED1,000 a month on food (excluding going out to restaurants for dinners etc.) so spending that in 3 days on juice was not going to happen.
I began to dig deeper and looked into doing it myself… but decided against that too because a) I’m too lazy to be juicing the fruits etc. up every morning, noon and night; b) I’m too lazy to go out and buy all the ingredients; c) I can’t keep the juices fresh during the day and have no way to juice for lunch at work, and d) it too was going to be very costly.
So, further digging was done and eventually I decided to make Jamba Juice, a juice store located in my office building, my daily juice-masters. I could get the juices made for breakfast, lunch and take-away dinner fresh throughout the day, I would be spending less than AED300 for the 3 days, and the only thinking that would go into it would be to decide what flavour I would have for each ‘meal’. Done.
Most of the research I did advised that you have a cleansing period of up to 2 weeks prior to doing a detox. Well, that wasn’t going to happen. I had a whopping one day (and had a brunch the day before that!), but I made it worthwhile by having very healthy, light meals for the day on Saturday. I got a good night’s sleep and mentally prepared myself for what was to come.
I started the day with 30 squats, 20 push-ups and a 3km run and then headed off to work.
I decided that I would continue each day with my regular cup of tea when I arrived at the office, so I had that, and then at about 9:30 (my normal breakfast time) I went down to buy my first juice – So Berry Strawberry.
Lunch time was a Pomegranate Paradise, afternoon ‘snack’ was a freshly squeezed apple juice from Carrefour, and dinner was a Berried in Peanut Butter (with a soy protein shot added in). I normally drink a large amount of water during the day so I maintained this for the entire detox period.
That evening I did no exercise and tried to keep my mind occupied by watching a very intense movie. By this stage I felt no difference whatsoever to a normal day of eating regular food, other than needing to use the toilet a bunch more times than usual, and had no headaches, lack of energy or moodiness during the day.
Total calories consumed – 1,355
I woke up feeling pretty normal, headed to work and started my day off with my cup of tea.
For breakfast I had an Orange Berry Antioxidant, lunch was an Acai Berry, snack was a freshly squeezed tropical fruit juice from Carrefour, and dinner was a Date & Avocado juice.
I went to gym that evening where I did 20 mins of core and 15 mins on the bicycle. I felt totally normal during and after my exercise, even to the point where I was able to really push myself on the bike.
Again I felt pretty much normal throughout the day, with no headaches, moodiness or lack of energy. However, I did get very hungry that night at about 9pm which I ignored and went to bed – I had already consumed a large amount of calories for the day and didn’t want to overdo it.
Total calories consumed – 2,030
I woke up very hungry, got to work and had my cup of tea.
Breakfast was an Apple-ocado, lunch was a Mango-a-go-go, dinner was an Apple ‘n greens. I had no snack during the day as I had just had enough of juices and couldn’t bare the thought of more.
Today I started feeling effects of the whole thing in that I had stomach cramps in the morning from too much acidity in all the juice, I was feeling slightly irritable during the day and I was getting extremely bored of drinking juice (thankfully still no headaches). I kept myself very occupied at night by working on photos, watching another intense movie and staying away from people. I also skipped any form of workout as just was not in the mood.
I drank my ‘dinner’ very slowly while sitting at home, and I followed it with a coconut water a short while later when the hunger started to creep in again… but I once again went to bed feeling hungry. However, this was the last stretch – I would sleep through this all and get to enjoy a proper breakfast in the morning!
Total calories consumed – 1,120
I woke up the next morning, went to work and had my regular cup of tea. I was hungry but I didn’t want to break from my normal routine of breakfast at around 9am… luckily the tea often helps keep the hunger at bay. And then 9am struck and I was straight into the pantry and making myself some delicious oats for breakfast!
The rest of the day was spent eating healthy, ending the day off with scrambled eggs and meat balls for dinner – and not going to bed hungry!
So, what are my overall thoughts on the 3 days?
It’s a total waste of time and money! There I’ve said it.
I felt no different during the 3 days other than extremely hungry and then unnecessarily irritable on the 3rd day. It has made no difference in how I feel overall, yet I spent at least triple what I would normally spend on food during the day at work. I was clever in my spending on this, though, and I used entertainer vouchers and was also given a loyalty card which entitled me to one free drink during the 3 days. My total spend was AED200.
Yes, I did lose 1kg in the process, but I’m not sure it was worth the hassle, money and moodiness. I can lose 1kg over a week by just adjusting my eating habits, and have it done in a more healthy way.
However, I am glad that I went through this because now I can give people an honest, experienced opinion if ever anyone wants to do this (and the ladies at Jamba Juice are now my best friends 😉 )
I also get to tick off something completely new for this week 🙂