WHY THIS TREATMENT?
I’m already a signed-up member of the pro-juice club. It started when I did a five-day juice detox about a year ago. I had a brand new Philips juicer that pulverised any fruit or vegetable in a matter of seconds (which was a very satisfying thing to do) so I went out and bought a trolley load of fruit and vegetables. When I had drunk that pile by lunchtime of day two, I thought, “Wow, it would have taken me weeks to eat my way through that load – these juicing geeks are really on to something.” However, fast forward a year and my beloved juicer is dead, defunct, no more. So, after a particularly gruelling month, I decided my health and immune system needed a little pick-me-up. Enter Essentially’s three-day juice cleanse.
WHAT'S IT ALL ABOUT?
Wiebke Katsoudas, from Germany, set up Essentially Juice Shop after visiting California and seeing the juice buzz over there. As a fully fledged juicer herself, she says the benefits of drinking organic, fresh juices are real and instant. According to Wiebke, it is not just about loading up on great nutrients, but about giving our digestive systems a break.
She says, “Our body has great self-healing mechanisms, which are designed to combat toxins. But put under too much daily strain, it can’t cope. Considering most of us consume three meals a day plus snacks, our digestive system works non-stop. If you take away the work of digesting food, you allow your system to rid itself of toxins while facilitating healing.
“A three-day juice cleanse is a great way to start gently ridding your body of impurities and toxins, in order to regain an alkaline balance and normalise digestion and metabolism.”
On the evening before the juice cleanse started, I received a delivery of three days’ worth of juice. Like the good student I am, I had read Wiebke’s guide and was ready for action.
Day one started with a mug of warm water (to wake the digestion system up slowly). About half an hour later, I tucked into my first green juice, containing cucumber, celery, apple, spinach, parsley, lemon and ginger. I know many people would turn up their nose at such a concoction. But as a fan of veggie juices, I drank it down, relishing the fresh taste, imagining all the great vitamins flowing into my cells (they are absorbed into your bloodstream within 15 minutes, according to Wiebke).
Does it taste nice? Well, it tastes exactly as you would expect a small bag load of vegetables (and an apple) to taste. No, it might not be as comforting as a hot chocolate, or as zingy as a cold can of Coke, but that is because it wasn’t created solely to tickle your taste buds. It is actually doing your body some good.
I had a juice every two hours until bedtime. They included two more green juices, a fruity number in the morning, a zesty lemon with paprika in the late afternoon, a beetroot-based juice and a yummy, silky cashew milk before bedtime. I enjoyed them all and didn’t feel in the slightest bit hungry. I also increased my water intake and swapped my caffeinated drinks for green teas – and no I didn’t cheat, because I truly didn’t want to.
The next two days I followed the exact same programme.
DID IT REALLY WORK?
At the risk of over-sharing, by lunchtime of day one I was pretty much urinating pure water. I know that is too much information, but the speed of the effect was so impressive, this review would not be complete without that detail.
I was expecting headaches, which never came. The only side effect was that on day one I was quite light-headed from about 2pm to about 4pm. I’m not sure why that happened, but it certainly made for an interesting giggle-heavy afternoon. On day two, I was slightly less light-headed in the afternoon, and by day three I wasn’t light-headed at all.
I didn’t suffer from the hunger and food deprivation that I have experienced during previous juice detoxes, and I didn’t feel the need to cheat even once. In fact, I felt less hungry – by day two I was just having my mug of water before leaving the house, and having my first juice later at work. I felt absolutely fine and full of beans. On day three I jumped out of bed as soon as my alarm went off, feeling more sprightly than I had in ages.
A couple of weeks on, I still feel great. I have a cup of tea each day, but I don’t go near the dispenser of pure evil (the office coffee machine), my eating is less erratic and I’ve lost a couple of kilos. So, yes it did work – it kick-started me in to a healthier way of living. And it’s inspired me to buy a new juicer.
A three-day juice cleanse from Essentially Juice Shop costs Dh897. For more, visit www.essentially.ae.