When I started telling friends and clients I was doing a 5-day cleanse I was met with resistance from some and support from others. Mostly people wanted to know why I was doing the cleanse “you already look great!” “Your body is strong and perfect” (Their words, not mine). I know my body is strong (it’s far from perfect) and I don’t want to lose weight (ok, maybe a few pounds, but who doesn’t?) My reason is to reset and detox my body. I eat fairly well compared to most people, however I have my vices and when I let those vices creep into my life, it’s really difficult for me to push them out. When I want something (namely a chocolate chip cookie or buttery, salty popcorn), I’ll have it. Even if I know it will make me feel like crap, I’ll have it. I suffer, but I don’t care. It is essential to break the cycle of dependence on saturated fats, refined carbohydrates, processed foods, and excess caffeine and alcohol. That’s what this cleanse does for me.
The benefits of a cleanse go far beyond losing weight and looking good, it breaks the cycle of cravings of food that undermine your health. Below are the 8 reasons I chose to do this cleanse and will choose to do this cleanse again 6 months from now. I’m hooked! I feel amazing. In my next post I’ll elaborate a little more on how it went for me and tell you more about Chef Veronica, the cleanse creator! Keep reading and thank you.
1. Reset your stomach
The stomach doesn’t have to work so hard extracting nutrients from your food when you’re on a cleanse. Give it a little time off and notice your digestion improve almost instantly.
2. Reset and repair your gut
Toxic foods, taking medications and stress can impair the intestine’s functioning. Plant-based, nutrient-rich food (or juice) absorbs quickly through the intestine with less energy and the nutrient-rich food (or juice) repairs the gut as it passes through. Win-Win! I feel less bloated, gassy and much lighter by day 2.
3. Reduce your appetite
The dark leafy vegetables in the green juice are great for achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight thanks to being high in fiber, which keeps your blood sugar from spiking and you feeling full. Despite what most people think, your metabolism is unlikely to slow down in just 3 or 5 days because you are still taking in calories, carbohydrates, and vitamins and minerals. It’s really the digestive system that slows down since there’s less to digest.
4. Eliminate harmful foods and floods your body with super nutrition
On a cleanse you eliminate all of the toxic, inflammatory foods we love to eat. Things like dairy, wheat, gluten, as well as coffee and alcohol and replace it with nutritional powerhouses like collards, dandelion greens, parsley, chard, green leaf lettuce and all types of kale.
5. Lose weight
Cleanses are naturally lower in calories, so you will most lkely lose weight on them. Most of it water weight that will come back when you return to normal eating however it is possible to keep the weight off if you continue to adopt the healthy habits you establish during the cleanse. I’m not typically trying to lose weight necessarily, however I do like how the cleanse trims me down a bit and jump-starts a healthier pattern of eating. I know for sure I’m going to continue to drink green juice every morning and start my day with an influx of delicious veggies to keep my body trim and my mind sharp.
6. Improve Energy
This is a big one for me because my job is so active (I’ve been teaching upwards of 15 classes per week recently) so having enough energy throughout the day is very important. After the first day (the worst day in my opinion) I feel surprisingly energetic and clear headed. Much more so then when I drink coffee or espresso all day. You wake up feeling lighter since your digestive track hasn’t been up all night working overtime to digest the garbage you gave it and so that energy is available for you to use throughout the day. Your new, renewed energy on a cleanse could also be explained by an undiagnosed allergy. Since you’re in elimination mode, you might not have realized you had a food allergy until you started the process and now feel great. If you feel dramatically better on your cleanse, it’s worth investigating further to identify what your trigger or allergy might be.
7. Reduce physical or mental problems
I’m lucky to not have too many chronic aches and pains or headaches, however, I’m no stranger to stress. Much of the time the body is fighting off the things we do to it that it manifests in physical pain or mental stress. A cleanse allows your body to take a little break from all of that hard work and just rest.
8. Repair your cells
Switching to an organic plant-based diet allows cells to work optimally to re-establish efficient internal messaging and manufacturing processes, allowing the mitochondria to create energy without having to fight off a plethora of free radicals and inflammation.