Three Day Juice Cleanse

I used to think people who did juice cleanses were a little crazy.

Well, last week I entered the world of crazies and did a three-day juice cleanse along with my husband. At least we’re crazy together.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

I briefly mentioned that I was doing a cleanse and the biggest reason why is because I wanted to hit the reset button. I’m largely a desserts blogger and I make and eat sweets, desserts, treats, and sugar 365 days a year and I sample it all. Some recipes I sample more than others.

For 3 days, I wanted to give my body, mind, and spirit a break and chance to allow it to re-center, realign, and restore. Like pressing the reset button.

MY OTHER RECIPES

My husband, Scott, had been talking about wanting to do a juice cleanse for ages and we decided to try Urban Remedy’s Three Day Signature Cleanse together.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

For a few days leading up to the cleanse, you’re supposed to eat as high raw and vegan as possible. No caffeine, alcohol, watch your sugar, processed foods, gluten intake, and common sense things that will make the transition to juice-only for three days as graceful as possible.

I estimate that 80% or better of my diet is very clean and is vegan, lots of raw foods, gluten-free, and so forth. The other 20% is worlds apart. I don’t deny myself sugar, chocolate, coffee, treats or what I’m craving. But going into the cleanse, both of us really cleaned up our acts, including that pesky 20% stuff. The one thing I couldn’t eliminate was my coffee intake. I’m hopelessly addicted to caffeine.

The juices arrived at 10am on our start day and every three hours or so, you’re supposed to drink one bottle. The bottles are 16-ounces each and there are 6 bottles per day. They’re labeled one through six, drink them in order.

The total daily caloric intake per day is about 1250 calories. However, as the Urban Remedy site indicates as well as other authorities and experts on juicing, 500 calories of juice is almost all usable calories; whereas 500 calories of a bagel and cream cheese is not. It’s like mainlining pure nutrients so you require less, in theory.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

If you’re wondering, neither my husband or I lost any weight. We both thought we would, but mathematically after I stopped to think about it, it’s not likely to pencil out. For example, if on an average day I consume about 2000 calories (I don’t count but am just guessing here), and on the juice cleanse I consumed 1250, that’s a 750 calorie per day deficit. Over 3 days, that’s a 2250 calorie deficit. One pound of fat = 3500 calories. So, mathematically you’d have to juice for awhile to lose true fat.

And with all that liquid we were drinking, we didn’t find we were losing water weight either. Everyone’s experiences vary, and we didn’t go into this to lose weight, but neither of us did.

On Day 1, we both did well during the day. By dinnertime, I was going through gnarly caffeine withdrawals. I had a pounding headache and was also cold from drinking cold juice all day. Although you’re not ‘supposed to’, Scott told me he drank a small coffee when he was out and that it helped him tremendously. I had a cup of warm herbal tea, which is reluctantly ‘allowed’. It wasn’t coffee, but it was warm and it got me over the hump.

Drinking the last juice of the day, which is more like dessert-in-a-bottle, was enough fat and substance for me to hop into bed and sleep like a baby.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

On Day 2 both Scott and I were up and down, hour by hour, as to how we felt. Some hours were good, full of energy, not hungry, really thriving. Other hours were hard and we’d text each other ‘So hungry I want to eat my arm off’. By evening, after going 48 hours without any solid food and my caffeine withdrawals as bad as ever, I had a small cup of coffee and a rice cake. It was the best tasting cup of coffee and the best tasting rice cake of my entire life. Those two very small things were enough to propel me into Day 3 with zest.

I woke up on Day 3 ready to tackle the world and did great the entire day. I had been going for runs each day because I am a lifelong runner and it centers me and helps me quiet my mind. When I don’t run, I am a mess. The last thing I wanted to do was give up my runs while trying to get through the cleanse. I didn’t have as much energy as usual and ran much slower and gentler than normal on the first two days, but on Day 3 I powered out a great run. By the time nightfall came, I was ready to go to bed, knowing that when I woke up on Day 4, I was going to eat!

Overall, I feel the cleanse gave my body a chance to reset and in the week since the cleanse I’ve been eating less sugar, less processed snacks, and more fruits and vegetables. I’ve drank far less coffee, probably 50% less than I had been drinking, and I am more mindful of what I’m putting in my body. The cleanse provided an opportunity to re-examine food choices and habits and make tweaks and adjustments accordingly.

My husband particularly loved it. He felt like it gave him mental clarity that he otherwise wouldn’t have gotten. In removing solid food, your senses really heighten and hone; smells, sights, experiences, and everything is intensified. He said it helped him realize that he doesn’t need to have a bagel with cream cheese, an apple, a banana, a glass of juice, and a cup of coffee all before 10am. He rationally knew this, but said actually doing the cleanse proved that he would be fine without it. Ironically, this week he went out of town for the week to a Transcendental Meditation retreat. This is not the man I married 13 years ago and watching his evolution into a juicing, meditation man has been a gift for me. And it all helps makes him the most patient Daddy ever.

If you’re interested at all in doing a juice cleanse, just do it. You have nothing to lose. If you get wickedly hungry after the first day and want to eat, do so. There are no absolutes. This is your body and you shouldn’t feel shame, guilt, or negative if you have to tweak the cleanse in order to get through it.

That said, three days was definitely my maximum. I wanted to chew, I missed solid food, and something about just juice and all the liquid left me feeling full, yet vacant and unsatisfied. However, it’s suggested that the more cleanses you do, the easier they get and that the first couple days are always the hardest.

We went with Urban Remedy rather than making our own juices and I cannot say enough good things about them. The juices are just so very good, and the more you drink them, the more you want to drink them. The juices are made without adding sugar, compared to many other companies who do, and they also don’t use much agave. Everything is organic, made fresh before shipping, and they make the whole process as easy and effortless as cracking open your next bottle. They have different levels of cleanses and we went with the signature and they have deeper and harder core cleanses and you can cleanse for as many days as you choose.

My favorites were Number 6 (cinnamon cashew milk with vanilla) – What’s not to love. It’s like dessert, complete with 310 calories and about 35 grams of fat in the bottle. Nuts are not low-fat. This is the juice I had have in order to make it through the day as it’s the only significant fat or protein source.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

And Number 4, After Party (beet root, carrot, ginger, apple and lemon) was my other favorite. I chugged this juice every day in like 15 seconds. Loved it.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

I also really liked Number 3, Flush (cucumber, mint, ginger, apple, and lemon). At first Scott said he hated this one but by Day 3, he liked it. I liked it on Day 1 and on Day 3, I loved it.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

The only downside to Urban Remedy or other companies who provide juices to your doorstep is that it’s not cheap. It’s about $60 per day, per person. Each bottle of juice is $10.

However, each bottle of juice contains about 2 pounds of fresh, organic produce. That would have required me to purchase and then juice 24 pounds of organic produce per day, which not only would have cost a pretty penny, it would have taken lots of time. No thanks.

Not to mention, I am woefully under-researched in the how-to-put-a-successful-cleanse-together department and having the guesswork taken out was beautiful. I stocked the fridge and we drank them in order.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

If you want to start juicing, I recommend checking Craigslist or Ebay for used juicers until you know it’s something you can see yourself sticking with. Cleanup is time-consuming and it’s not cheap to juice because you need so much produce in order to produce a significant volume of juice, very different than smoothie-making in a Vita-Mix or blender where you use everything, pulp and all in say a Tropical Green Smoothie

Tropical Green Smoothie (vegan, GF) averiecooks.com

The juicer I’ve used is this Breville Juice Fountain Elite 1000-Watt Juice Extractor and although it’s fine as juicers go, cleanup is still tedious.

Will I do another cleanse? Yes, one day. And now that I know what it’s like, I can better prepare for it, including trying to eliminate coffee beforehand, which was the hardest thing about the cleanse for me. Not the lack of food, but the lack of caffeine.

Scott told me that he wants to try a Five-Day next time.

Three Day Juice Cleanse averiecooks.com

Have you ever done a juice cleanse or juice fast? Any interest?

What do you do when you feel like you need to press the reset button? What helps you get back or stay on track?

This post was written to share our experiences on the cleanse. In no way am I am expert on juicing, and this is not intended as medical advice. I am not telling you to juice or not to juice and am unable to answer detailed medical questions about if I think juicing would be a good idea for you. Do your own homework and research.

100 comments on “Three Day Juice Cleanse”

  1. Juice cleanse sounds very interesting. I am not sure how I could go through a day without a coffee… but surly it’s possible. I think I could use cleanse like this as well. Thank you for this informative post.

  2. I did a three day (homemade) juice fast about 6 months ago. I like to cleanse every so often for a healthy ‘reset’ and to get cravings back in check but that was my first go at an all juice fast. It was a little brutal – I think I ended up having light raw salads for lunch a couple days because I missed the “chew factor” also. I definitely felt light and energized by the third day, but also ready for a ‘real’ meal. :)

    The Urban Remedy juices look so colorful and yummy! Thanks for the review!

  3. I have done a “juice day” with my own concoctions a couple of times, but never longer than that. I think I would much rather go with a pre-made program if I were going to do a few days. The convenience of grabbing a bottle, no mess, and not having to do all the research and prep would be nice (and probably less stressful)! A cleanse is supposed to be a positive, healthful thing…so I could justify the cost with the mindset that I would be treating myself to some high quality products for a few days. Besides, the Urban Remedy juices look so good! Glad it went well for you (and Scott) and that you liked the products. Oh..the coffee thing..yikes..3 days?!?..ouch!

    • “so I could justify the cost with the mindset that I would be treating myself to some high quality products for a few days.” — and that is the best way to look at it. It’s like getting a massage or acupuncture or anything else that’s not truly a life’s necessity but does have so much benefit; that it’s an investment in your health and wellness, on many different levels.

      And the coffee/caffeine situation, yes, ouch!

  4. I looked into this recently, but was disappointed to see that they’re not nut free… not to mention the imo heft price for a cleanse. I may consider it for the future though. Love the in depth review!

    • There’s only that one juice, #6, that includes nuts. And I’m sure that you could talk to them about a suitable replacement. I know other services who have nuts in their juices when I was doing my research on the various companies, that many said if you need a nut-free juice, we can work with you. Also, as you move up into the deeper levels of cleanses (we were doing the signature/intro level, but there are two more harder core/advanced levels – I don’t believe from memory they use nuts. It’s all on their website).

  5. Thanks so much for all the feedback on your cleanse! I start mine on Tuesday! We’re also doing 3 day. One friend who works for a local juicing company told me that the 3 day cleanses always leave him feeling “hungover” so he does the 5 day ones always. Doesn’t sound like that was your experience though! I think for my first time, 3 day is definitely the way to go. I’ll let you know how it goes!! :)

  6. You are brave. I’m not sure if I could do just juice for three days….unless I had the flu. Ahaha!

    I do a 21 day “cleanse” that comes down to no gluten, alcohol, sugar, caffeine, meat or dairy. It’s amazing, I have so much to eat but at the same time I feel completely trasformed after about 4 days. I sleep better, I have an obnoxious amount of energy, my mood is lifted, and after the 21 days is up I’m usually about eight pounds lighter (12 pounds being the most).

    I can eat so many things, rice, indian, beans, corn tortillas, rice milk with gluten free cereal, fruit, veggies, etc. At the end of the 21 days my palette is completely reset, and that’s what I love the most about it. Things I taste are brighter and I want less of it, especially things with sugar and salt. I usually continue it for much longer after the 21 days automatically, but I add cheese, eggs, and coffee. The three things I cannot live without.

    Do you think you all will do that 3 day cleanse regularly?

    Thanks for all the information and well done you two!

    • no gluten, alcohol, sugar, caffeine, meat or dairy = that is impressive! The caffeine would and is the hardest part for me. Dairy, meat, gluten, alcohol are all very easy for me to not have and meat I haven’t had in 20+ years. Sugar is harder but do-able. Caffeine…so hard.

      Do you think you all will do that 3 day cleanse regularly? = To some extent, yes. But it will be on our own since the $$ to do these services is a luxury we couldn’t afford on a regular basis. And maybe just doing a one-day juice fast or anything is better than nothing type of thing!

    • Briana, What is the name of that 21 day cleanse that you do? That sounds like something I could really pull off!

  7. Such an interesting post! I still don’t think I could?would do it. I am also surprised you didn’t lose weight. When I need to detox – which is pretty much bound to happen when you blog about dessert, just try to eat really clean for a few days and it works quite well. I

    • I try to do the same; just eat super clean for a few days but this was a bucket list item of sorts, too, that we had both wanted to try. Mathematically the weight thing as I outlined isn’t logical consequence. You think you would but you can’t trick physics and this is largely a scientific matter about input/output and deficit and how great or small the deficit is over time. Basically not significant enough deficit in just 3 days to truly lose any weight; for us as least. I always temper these things…this is what happened for us but everyone is unique :)

  8. I’ve never been able to make it through one day of a juice cleanse… By lunch I’m so hungry I always eat. So I end up using the juices as additional supplements to a very cleaned up vegan diet for a few days, which makes a lot more sense to me – if I want to move things out of my body, fiber will help! I did have success with an Ayurvedic kitchari cleanse … Five days, only kitchari and some fruit. That was an awesome fall/winter appropriate cleanse, I guess… I just like eating. Maybe the juice hunger is a mind over matter situation.

    Ok, done rambling, now I want juice!!

    • It is mind over matter in large part and the hunger cravings they say are the most intense on the first two days, which I believe. That said, it’s not for everyone and I am with you…that I’d rather clean up and already quite clean diet and supplement with juices, etc as it makes sense!

  9. I’m not a juice cleanse type, but when I scrolled down to see your tropical green smoothie, I changed my mind. That looks so amazingly good to me!

    • Ok that smoothie and green variations on it is something I drink (well the whole family drinks actually) many times per week as breakfast or a snack. But that’s totally different than juicing.
      Smoothie = drink the whole plant, put everything in Vita/blender and blend and drink
      Juicing = drink just the juice, put everything in juicer and juice it and pulp comes out and is strained off from juice and you need 10x more raw materials since there is so much pulp and unusable plant product

      Just reiterating that for anyone reading the comments that my green smoothie I showed is NOT part of a juicing plan/cleanse. Totally separate thing!

  10. I am impressed you and your hubs did this! We’ve talked about it but haven’t yet done it. We got a juicer for our wedding and have really enjoyed making juices with it, so we figured that was a good place to start… Maybe someday we’ll commit to doing a cleanse like you did!! Also, that vanilla and cinnamon cashew one sounds DELISH.

  11. I have no interest in doing a juice cleanse but my hat is off to you and Scott for pulling it off. When I’m feeling like I need a reset I try to eat green salads for lunch and dinner for a week.

  12. I’ve done a few juice cleanses when I felt my sugar cravings getting out of control. They are never easy. I have the same Breville juicer you have, and I also find the cleanup to be tedious. I think I would juice more often if it weren’t for the cleaning!

  13. DId you say caffeine withdrawals? Um. Not sure I could do a juice cleanse ~ but you do make me very curious! Great review :)

  14. Great review! Juice cleanses have always intrigued me! I have managed a 2 day green smoothie cleanse, but that was as far as I got ;) I was just diagnosed with a peanut/egg/soy sensitivity. I would love to know how you are able to enjoy these foods again after avoiding them for so long. 3 weeks in and I am dying for peanut butter!!!

  15. Loved this post, Averie! I like to do a juice cleanse about once a quarter for the same reason that you mentioned: I really feel that it helps me to reset my body and even my palate, too! When you’re tasting stuff for a living, I personally derive alot of value from sort of starting from a clean slate every once in a while. That said, I’ve never heard of Urban Remedy so I’ll look into them when I’m ready for my next cleanse. Great post!

  16. I was never interested in cleanses, but have fasted (for religious reasons) on and off during my adult life. Usually this means juice and herbal tea for about 24 hours (and on a few occasions, longer). Between pregnancies and nursing, I really haven’t done much for about 2.5 years along those lines. I’m not sure I ever thought of it as “resetting” – I found it was easier to focus on quiet/meditation during what would normally be mealtimes, plus the lack of food has an oddly focusing effect.

  17. It sounds so hard to me! More than anything, I would miss coffee. But I think you’re right about letting our bodies rest. We are one of the few cultures that don’t do regular fasts. I need to do something soon!

  18. I have a smoothie every morning and I sometimes wonder if I could do for all three meals, multiple days in a row. I was nice hearing your honest opinion. I am still fascinated by the whole juicing notion. I am sure I would be with you on the whole being cold experience.

  19. I know this is all about the smoothie and cleansing, but must say, I also really love the packaging of these little bottles. just so adorable! also, good thoughts about fasting. I really believe that there is no best way to eat because evrybody’s body is different, and even for one person, his or her body will need different sorts of food at different times based on your stresses in life etc. I say, listen to your body ,and do what feels right and love your food x

  20. I didn’t know Scott was doing it with you – that’s great!
    My gosh, your photos make those juices look like…I don’t know, jelly beans, or gumdrops, or something else candy-like and delicious! The colors are just amazing…they really POP.
    Overall, excellent and thorough review! Glad to hear you liked Urban Remedy as much as I did. I really think they’re one of the best…and I would know, haha!

    • Yes, you WOULD know, after what…15 cleanses that you’ve blogged about and way more than that off the blog. I bow down to thee :)

      And yes, they did look like bottles of jelly beans or gummy bears or something…so vibrant and they just POPPED off the table with light bouncing and glowing everywhere and I’m glad I was able to show that in the photos!

  21. I’m impressed and not at all surprised by your results. The thing that keeps me from doing a cleanse, even now that I have a juicer, is the money. All that produce is $$$$. And the cleanup.

    But those three jflavors you mention sound delicious. I may have to try them out on my own. Someday.

  22. Thanks for sharing your story of your juice cleanse. My goal this spring break is to complete 5-day one, great inspiration.

  23. So proud of you, Averie, for getting thru your juice cleanse! I’ve never done juice like this, but I have done some other tough cleanses. Always feels refreshing…something we bakers should do from time to time. I’m an 80/20 girl, too. By the way…nominated you for the Saveur Best Food Blog Awards 2013 for Best Baking Blog!! This is what I said, “Averie is one of the wickedest bakers out there! Her blog is a feast for the eyes…treats of all kinds! Photography is pretty wicked, too.” LOL! Hope you’ve gotten other nods! Your blog is “the bombe”. ;) Have a great holiday weekend, girl! xo

    • Ohmygosh you are so sweet! I didn’t even know polling was open for that. Will be googling here in a minute to check but to my knowledge, no one else has mentioned anything to me and that you did that…so awesome. You rock!! And I hope you have a fabulous weekend! :)

  24. Good job sticking with it, Averie! These juices look so delicious, but I don’t think I could do it! I do appreciate you giving so much insight into juice cleansing though… something to consider. Thanks!

  25. Glad to hear you made it through the cleanse! That cinnamon-vanilla one looks delicious! I’m going to start experimenting with cashew cream :)

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