There’s been much talk about juice cleanses over the past few years. I’ll admit, I was a bit of a sceptic, but, as always, decided it would be best for me to try it for myself.
I entered into the cleanse with a few questions, but before I even had a chance to type them out, Fiona sent me a comprehensive email telling me everything I could have possibly wanted to know. And, that would be a theme thoughout my five day experience – apart from fantastic, delicious juices, the customer service component of the cleanse was also a highlight.
So, I thought it best to try it out first-hand. Juice Revolution was started by Fiona, who moved from a corporate career to one dedicated to bringing health and wellness to SA. From the moment I signed up, I felt 100% supported and like Fiona was only an email away. She managed to take any scepticism I had away from her very first email, which answered all the questions I had:
- The juices are made from the freshest fruits and vegetables, local and organic wherever possible.
- The produce is pre-washed in pure ozone water, a powerful cleansing agent with no harmful by products.
- The extraction process results in an extremely high quality juice with more vitamins, minerals and enzymes intact due to very little heat friction and oxidation.
- Since fresh juice rapidly loses its nutritional value they immediately blast freeze the juices, thereby preserving the all-important nutrients. It is then stored at -20˚C to guarantee that it retains all of its nutritional qualities until it is delivered to your door.
- The juice is unpasteurized and you will find no added sugars, preservatives, flavourants, additives, chemicals or nasty E numbers present anywhere.
What is included?
- Daily emails of encouragement, helpful tips and information.
- Daily supplements of spirulina, barley grass and acidophilus
- A selection of detox teas to enjoy daily
- Four x 500ml juices per day, as well as a 50ml apple and ginger zinger shot and a 340ml “apple pie” juice to enjoy, warmed, in the evenings.
The juices change and progress throughout the five days – starting with pure green juices, before moving on to berries, bananas and richer, sweeter fruits and vegetables. Ironically, the very first juice was my absolute favourite – the 8 A Day. Made from cucumber, celery, pineapple, spinach, lime, apple, avocado and ginger, it was sweet and earthy and tangy and just fantastic. I could have happily had this for the full five days.
The juices arrive frozen, in an insulated foam box. Simply transfer them to your freezer and defrost the next day’s juices at room temperature the night before. I made the mistake of trying to defrost them in the fridge (spoiler alert – they don’t), which meant I had to delay my start by a few days. Lesson learned: pay attention to instructions. You’ll also receive a handy booklet which gives suggested times to drink each juice and a few tips to keep in mind for when you’ve completed your cleanse.
What I learned
The difference between food and nutrition
This was the biggest area of learning for me. Although I wasn’t having food, as such, by body was receiving optimal nutrition. On the opposite side of the spectrum, it made me think of what I generally put in my body – and whether it tends to err on the side of ‘food’ or ‘nutrition’ – ideally finding a delicious balance between them both. More than simply calories, we all know that some foods are more nutritionally dense than others: whether it’s as simple as lettuce vs spinach in a salad, or quinoa vs rice – I’ll be making more informed and responsible decisions going forward. I noticed that I was relying too heavily on processed, vegan-friendly meat substitutes and bread-like substances, so have made a concerted effort to cut down on these since completing the cleanse.
How food has become such a big part of socialising
“Let’s grab a coffee before work”, “Keen to meet for brunch this weekend?” or even a simple “Pop over for a glass of wine” were no longer options during these five days. While I love the social aspect of food, and having friends over for dinner is one of my favourite ways to spend an evening, becoming aware of this has made me think of a few non-food based ways to spend time together.
What is hunger?
I’ve learned that thirst, boredom and every emotion under the sun masquerades as hunger. Even though my body was getting more nutrients that ever before, it still thought it was hungry simply because it wasn’t ‘chewing’.
While this is marketed as a cleanse, I think it’s also a good way to give your body a fresh start – easily delivered, optimal nutrition for a few days will quickly show up any bad habits you’ve happened to fall into, and likely also make you re-evaluate your relationship with food.
Note: I was invited to try the 5 day cleanse at no cost. All images and views are my own.