Marie Claire (South Africa) - - BEAUTY -


The weekend’s ca­sual drink­ing was fun but it’s now etched across my face – de­hy­drated skin, puffy eyes and an­gry spots; this cer­tainly feels like the ideal day to start this cleanse. Juice Revo­lu­tion’s info pack is bright, cheer­ful and id­iot-proof, thanks to its timetable that de­tails the name, num­ber and drink­ing time of each juice and its spe­cific sup­ple­ments. Juice one, with its re­fresh­ing lime, ap­ple, pineap­ple, cu­cum­ber and av­o­cado blend, is de­li­cious – so far so good. At work I fol­low the daily tips and at­tempt to ‘chew’ each mouth­ful of juice two, hop­ing my col­leagues don’t no­tice my cheeks bulging like a chip­munk’s with each gulp. Later, I nose­dive into an af­ter­noon slump, bom­barded by a con­stant headache.The tips ex­plain that I’m not ‘detox­ing’ (which the body does nat­u­rally all the time), but ‘with­draw­ing’, mainly from su­gar and caf­feine. Al­though the smell of my part­ner’s roast chicken is tor­tur­ous, I sip my Hot ‘n Spicy tea – a warm ap­ple and cin­na­mon ‘soup’ – curled up on the sofa, con­tent that I made it through the first day.


I peel my­self out of bed early, into my train­ers and off for a run. Sur­pris­ingly, I have the en­ergy to jog for 30 min­utes and feel mo­ti­vated af­ter­wards. This morn­ing’s ex­er­cise and juices have re­ally in­creased my nat­u­ral en­ergy lev­els and con­cen­tra­tion. It’s both strange and con­ve­nient not to have to or­gan­ise meals dur­ing the day. How­ever, by the af­ter­noon I plunge into ir­ri­tabil­ity and, de­spite drink­ing wa­ter, juice and tea all day, strug­gle with an­other headache. Thank­fully, as soon as I be­gin to feel hun­gry, it’s time for the next juice – each en­sures my blood-su­gar lev­els don’t crash. While queue­ing in the su­per­mar­ket, I am aware that the check­out temp­ta­tion aisle is at­tempt­ing to erode my willpower, but I stay strong. I haven’t ac­tu­ally been phys­i­cally hun­gry for two days – it’s my ‘mind hunger’, as the daily tips in­form me. They also ex­plain that I’m feel­ing lethar­gic not be­cause I am on the juices, but be­cause I ate the junk. Fiona’s words re­mind me to stop moan­ing, get on with it, drink the Hot ‘n Spicy tea, sleep and let my body re­pair.Yes, Ma’am!


I haul my­self out of bed for an­other 30-minute run dur­ing which I feel the en­dor­phins and bask in the morn­ing sun­shine. Get­ting ready for work, I no­tice my skin is glow­ing for the first time in weeks and the re­cent flare-up is sig­nif­i­cantly fad­ing. En­cour­aged, I start the day with a more pos­i­tive mind­set and for­get my usual de­sire for a morn­ing caf­feine fix. To­day, a new banana, pineap­ple, lime and yo­ghurt juice is in­tro­duced and the thick­ness of its tex­ture is a wel­come change. Dur­ing the day, I feel calmer and less re­ac­tive in stress­ful sit­u­a­tions and by the af­ter­noon my en­ergy slump and headaches aren’t as se­vere. Re­lin­quish­ing all so­cial obli­ga­tions due to ‘the cleanse’, I en­joy an­other quiet evening in. While sip­ping my evening juices, I read over my day three tips for in­spi­ra­tion, one of which fo­cuses on de­vel­op­ing an ‘at­ti­tude of grat­i­tude’ when con­sid­er­ing that we live in ‘a world of abun­dance with an at­ti­tude of lack’. I must put my ‘stress’ into per­spec­tive, as Fiona so neatly puts it, and re­mem­ber that I am ‘too blessed to be stressed’.


I bounce out of bed and ac­tu­ally want to go for my morn­ing run. Ar­riv­ing at work, I don’t even think about break­fast and fo­cus on my work with sur­pris­ing clar­ity. To­day’s juices are greener, in­tro­duc­ing in­gre­di­ents like pars­ley and kale. By 5pm I’m flag­ging, so I con­sult my day four tips, which tell me not to put ev­ery lit­tle thing – like feel­ing tired or get­ting a headache – down to the ‘detox’. ‘How many times have you felt tired in the af­ter­noon?’ Fiona asks, so I try not to over­anal­yse the process. By evening, I stum­ble at the cru­cial mid-week hur­dle and join friends at a tapas restau­rant.The smell of their grilled cheese and meat dishes tor­ments me and for the first time this week I want to throw in the towel. But I don’t. I just tell my­self to try avoid­ing these tempt­ing sit­u­a­tions.


Within min­utes of wak­ing, my stomach is growl­ing and I’m too tired to run. But, to my ut­ter de­light, my acne is dis­ap­pear­ing with no fur­ther signs of the sore, recurring pim­ples I’ve come to ex­pect. My skin doesn’t even re­quire foun­da­tion, so I use a BB cream.Yet, de­spite the post-cleans­ing eu­pho­ria, I be­gin what is un­doubt­edly the hard­est day of the cleanse. Phys­i­cally, my dis­sat­is­fied stomach grum­bles all day, de­spite drink­ing the juices on time. Men­tally, I’m so ir­ri­ta­ble I want to throw my juice bot­tle at some­one and end up ly­ing down on the of­fice sofa, try­ing my hard­est not to whinge, yawn or eat. Later, at a din­ner party, I have to SMS Fiona for sup­port and an­nounce to friends that af­ter five cheat-free days I’ve proven my point and that to­mor­row I am eat­ing again.


Thank good­ness it’s the weekend. I’m now over the worst and feel­ing in­cred­i­bly fresh for a Satur­day morn­ing (while my part­ner deals with a hang­over). This morn­ing’s juices con­tain both banana and yo­ghurt, a more sub­stan­tial and sat­is­fy­ing tex­ture than yes­ter­day’s wa­tery green blends. My en­ergy lev­els are back to nor­mal, even af­ter a two-hour browse round the shops and, un­like yes­ter­day’s near-melt­down, I feel men­tally stronger, haven’t felt hun­gry and (thank­fully) have been in a great mood – my ‘juice high day’ as the daily tips de­scribe it. With brighter, blem­ish-free skin, I man­age to leave the house wear­ing only tinted mois­turiser and a coat of mas­cara – a rare oc­cur­rence thanks to my in­creased con­fi­dence – and my part­ner notices my fresher look.


I’m so thrilled by the clar­ity and smooth­ness of my skin, I gawp at both my cheeks, strug­gling to re­call the last time I washed my face with­out feel­ing at least one sore pim­ple. De­spite the wind out­side, I lace up my train­ers and set off on a run to get some fresh air. My body feels light and en­er­gised and I feel up­beat and happy all day. Hav­ing elim­i­nated ar­ti­fi­cial stim­u­lants and pro­cessed foods from my diet for a week it is amaz­ing how much I ap­pre­ci­ate the flavours in each nutrient-rich sip.As the cleanse comes to an end, I am proud of my­self for demon­strat­ing im­pres­sive willpower de­spite some chal­leng­ing mo­ments. I feel a sense of achieve­ment from hav­ing made it through the full pro­gramme and be­gin en­vis­ag­ing the foods I’m go­ing to en­joy as I en­ter a new week.

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