I can’t even believe I did it–my first juice cleanse!! Juice cleanses were basically all the rage last year, and I know I might be late, but timing for me was basically perfect: I had a lot of classes and didn’t have time to make a lot of food for myself while over the weekend my parents were away and couldn’t cook, so when RAW Generations was so kind to send me their Skinny Cleanse, I was totally in!
RAW Generations was born from a loving father-daughter relationship in 2012. Bill Geier decided to start his own juice line to inspire he and his daughter Jess to incorporate healthy choices into a lifestyle, specifically eating raw, unpasteurized fruits and leafy green vegetables. As a result, Jess became a Certified Holistic Health Coach and works alongside her father to spread the RAW Generations love! What I love is that they named their ah-mazing juices after members of their family and created them according to their personalities. You can check all of them out in the package gallery below with everything I got!
To make one of my long stories short, the guidelines said that the day before the cleanse you eat vegan and plenty of raw fruits and vegetables along with lots of hydration. So for the day right before, I ate completely plant-based foods but I felt as if I could’ve made more of an effort to eat raw. What can I say? I love my sweet potatoes and beans. Plus I’m not at all a fan of raw zucchinis.
Rules of the 3-Day Skinny Cleanse
- Choose a time where you have little to stress about and little to no emotional, physical, social or mental pressures.
- Do no or very light exercise such as yoga, casual swimming or walking.
- Drink at least 6 juices a day, but listen to your body. If you get full, you can save the leftover juices for the next day.
- Hydrate yourself with plenty of water. Add cucumber, lemon, lime, or any other fruit slices/berries is a great way to spice things up a bit!
- If you are still hungry, eat some fresh and raw fruits and vegetables to get more fiber.
- You are allowed to drink coffee and tea without milk, sugar, creamers or any other flavor additives.
- If you are skipping a day, eat light and healthy during that day.
It was pretty relieving to not worry about going all out in my Pilates routine, and I was very excited about my delicious breakfast! Not only did I love the fruit platter but I also chugged the juices down happily! The Jessica juice was refreshing, bitter and sweet in a very complementary way. If you want to have a high-quality green juice that doesn’t taste like it was made with just spinach and flaxseed oil, then the Jessica is definitely for you! As for the Cecelia–OH MY GOD I cannot even start. It is slightly tangy, pretty sweet and VERY hydrating. Hands down it was my favorite juice of the day! I felt a liiiiiittle overstuffed after breakfast but I went along with it because my lunch wasn’t going to be supplemented with any solid foods.
For lunch I had another Jessica juice and my first Carolyn juice. I initially thought I wouldn’t like Carolyn because I normally don’t like beet juice, but I was pleasantly surprised upon how amazing it was! It is basically the love child of the Cecelia juice and watermelon juice. You sort of taste the beets, but it’s pretty subtle, so if you don’t like beets you should be fine. I ended up finishing ALLLL of the Carolyn juice and a little less than half of the Jessica. I also made sure to drink my second liter of water for the day.
I’ll admit that I did experience some hunger pangs and a mild headache in between my afternoon snack and dinner, but I decided to not let them bother me because I knew that A) they are very common symptoms of the body removing toxins and B) I didn’t have any tea. After drinking some jasmine tea I felt much better but by dinner time I was seriously craving savory and cooked foods. Literally, I almost cried when ordering my kale mushroom salad and carrots because I couldn’t even order bean chili, butternut squash or quinoa. However, my salad definitely satisfied my salty tooth just fine along with the Elizabeth juice (which was not bad, but my least favorite of the juices because I loved the other three so much) and the last Jessica juice. I didn’t finish the Elizabeth juice and felt pretty guilty of not doing so because I was worried I didn’t eat enough, but hey, you gotta listen to your gut. By the end of the day I was eager to rest and I happily slept well with very few interruptions at night (with the exception of bathroom trips).
Day 2 was both the best AND worst day. In the morning, I felt amazing. My bloated belly was gone from yesterday (for some odd reason, I woke up on Day 1 [before cleansing] with horrible bloating that didn’t go away until nighttime) and I had plenty of energy to fuel myself for a morning hike (of course, after drinking a liter of water). Breakfast was the delicious Cecilia and Jessica juices with a large acai bowl made of berries, acai and what was left of my bulk nana ice cream. I topped the smoothie with white peaches, berries and raw almond butter since my body was craving for the fats that I didn’t eat the previous day. I didn’t finish all of the Cecelia juice, which was fine since I could drink the rest of it at the next meal.
Unfortunately, my energy after lunch went downhill. First of all, I couldn’t finish the entire dragonfruit nor the Carolyn juice since I was stuffed from everything else and the breakfast smoothie. Because of this I felt super ashamed of myself for not finishing so many juices. Even after stopping I still felt like I overate since I was too late in stopping while eating. I drank some tea and my second liter of water and BOOM–right after that I got a 2-hour long headache where I had to lay down and attempt to meditate for a few minutes along with a 3-hour long stomachache and a tummy as large as a pregnant woman’s. I just wanted to lie in bed and sleep for 40 hours and eat nothing at all. At this point I was craving cooked foods and I wanted to stop the juice cleanse immediately. My body felt so uncomfortable I almost attempted to throw up but stopped myself because doing so is NOT healthy. After a little research and patience I drank some tea and felt much better, but still dealt with a little dizziness and a slight headache.
By dinner I was pretty much done with the sugar of the fruits and the juices but I finished the Elizabeth juice and most of the Jessica. I basically rummaged around my kitchen three times to see what was allowed and what wasn’t, and I didn’t have enough time to dehydrate some veggies. To curb the sweetness I had a seaweed salad and a sliced yellow bell pepper with my spicy chia cheese–which BTW was crazy addictive! By the end of the day my headache and stomachache disappeared but I almost wanted to discontinue the cleanse due to the anxiety I felt because I was restricted to only raw vegan food for dinner and would’ve died from the idea of having another sweet SWEET meal. For some odd reason, I felt great by the time I was ready to sleep.
By this day I felt as if I was pretty used to the gist of juicing. I was very worried about feeling horrible and sick throughout the day, only to repair myself late at night when I’d go to bed and not be able to fully experience my energy. This morning I woke up very lively and refreshed, ready to conquer the day. I strangely felt much better throughout the day, since my body might have flushed all of the toxins it needed to get rid of.
I managed to finish both the Jessica and Carolyn juices and all of the fruit. I was also very glad to have at least one ripe banana since I’ve been craving bananas for the longest time! I did wish I could make a smoothie but it was Monday and I had a summer prep class in the morning. Luckily I felt pretty darn full enough until lunch when I came home around 12-ish. Since I wanted to save the sweet Cecelia for the night as “dessert juice” I chugged down two Jessicas along with leftover berries. I felt this was a much better meal since it was lighter and I felt a bit weighed down by the dragonfruit from breakfast. Seriously, I love the taste of dragonfruit but there’s something about it that makes me feel kind of bloated and full after eating more than half of one fruit (Don’t know if a slight intolerance is impossible, but who knows?).
Drinking tea in between meals also helped warm my stomach and not bloat like crazy. To tide be over before dinner I drank the Elizabeth juice around the afternoon, plus I didn’t have one the second day after stuffing myself with that dragonfruit. With that experience I learned that I NEED a snack in between, otherwise I overeat at dinner and go to bed with an overly full food baby. Speaking of dinnertime, I had a fairly early dinner (around 6 PM or so) that consisted of a raw Romaine lettuce bunch, a Jessica juice and a Cecelia juice. The Cecelia tasted DIVINE with the Jessica and I thought the simplicity of the Romaine lettuce complemented the sweetness and vibrancy of the juices very well. I used to think that lettuce by itself would taste awful. It does, but having it with the juices definitely helps. While I had very simple and somewhat “boring” meals I felt the best today, because they were mentally less stressful for me to prepare. That was one of the most truly detoxifying parts of the cleanse and I ended very well. Simplicity is what juicing is all about.
POST-CLEANSE & TIPS
Strangely enough I feel a lot more focused and motivated to complete tasks. My brain is clearer, my thinking is sharper, my bloating has disappeared and I generally feel lighter. I’ve lost a little weight for sure, but I do not have an exact number of how many pounds I’ve shed since I did not weigh myself at the beginning of the cleanse.
It is just as important to ease out of the cleanse as it is to ease into it. After my first bowl of Greek yogurt with one of the juices, I bloated like a 28-week pregnant woman and the full-blown belly lasted for at least two or even three hours. I can easily blame it on poor food combining, but my body has been used to combining Greek yogurt and fruit for years (Balanced Bowls, parfaits, etc.!) that my money is more on the fact that I avoided dairy for three days straight and temporarily lost the ability to digest animal proteins. What I suggest is to start slow: eliminate either half or even a whole juice per day, and increase your intake of grains, animal proteins, legumes and cooked foods. While the cleanse is over, I will continue to incorporate my leftover juices in some way, whether on the side, in smoothies, oatmeal, etc.
To be completely honest, I was not 100% in tune with the juice cleansing process. While I expected it to be a detoxifying and relieving regimen I actually found it nerve-wracking and confining since I was limited to not only one food category but also the way those foods were cooked. I guess that because I’m not used to eating raw and vegan so frequently throughout the day, I found it very difficult to stay sane and happy. I’ll admit I was beyond disappointed with myself when I wanted to give up. Cassie, you’re better than this. You usually have so much willpower to keep going. Why are you even thinking about giving up? I almost experienced a sense of orthorexia when trying to convince myself to keep going–I practically implied to myself that I would be a failure in this world if I stopped. In this case, it wasn’t like I didn’t care because I did, and I got myself to suck it up and pull through the last day, which ended up not being so bad after all.
Let me just make the main point loud and clear that you need to plan accordingly if you want to begin a juice cleanse. Do it during a time where you have very little pressure, workload and worries. Another important note is to eaaaaaaaaaase into the cleanse and educate yourself. Look at other people’s stories, find advice and inspiration and make sure that you really know how to juice cleanse correctly. Hey, even though I didn’t like the cleansing process entirely, I might’ve done some things that actually violated the juice cleansing rules and unintentionally harmed my experience. Maybe something I ate when out and about was cooked. Maybe I ate too much on the side. It’s also possible that I accidentally ingested something from an animal or an insect.
That being said, RAW Generations deserves FIVE out of FIVE stars. It is still one of the best and most accommodating juice companies I know so far and makes super delicious and fresh drinks that are not only crazy nutritious but also very filling! I am absolutely in LOVE with all of their drinks and I would not hesitate at all to get more of their products and just ignore the cleanse by using it in smoothies or having it whenever I want to while I eat normally. (Besides, I wouldn’t mind drinking cold-pressed chocolate peanut butter protein shakes from the physique cleanse!) I don’t blame RAW for my juicing experience because it was my first time and my body isn’t used to such a regimen, and every juice program potentially follows the same rules. I don’t think anyone is to blame. Anyhow, I hope you enjoyed the video I made and I highly recommend the RAW Generations Skinny Cleanse if you are a juice cleansing expert or if you feel 110% ready for trying out a juice cleanse. If not, the RAW juices are seriously still worth purchasing.
P.S. Do let me know if you like the gallery format of the pictures more than my typical list of photos!