I love fresh servings of fruit and vegetable juices. There is something about the natural freshness that hits your taste buds, sending all your cells into a happy dance that no other Peel Fresh or other packed, pasteurized and sweetened juices can do (sorry Peel Fresh!). If I have the patience to peel, cut and wash every single vegetables and fruits on a daily basis AND still have enough willpower to wash the juicer thoroughly after, I would gladly have my 5 servings of vegetables and fruits in liquid form every day.
Lucky for me, the owner of La Juiceria got in touch last week to offer a 2-day Juice Cleanse pack to try over the weekend. YIPPEE!! Of course, I eagerly accepted before it dawned on me that I would be attending a 2-day Ashtanga Workshop, a wedding, and teaching 4 yoga classes on the same weekend. But I took this as a great way to experiment with the juice cleanse and its effect over an energetic and busy weekend.
The Juice Pack
The pack consists of 12 bottles of fresh cold pressed juices. They were delivered to the studio where I teach on Friday nights. It arrived in its own travel-sized La Juiceria Cooler Bag which I thought was an awesome addition as I move a lot between yoga studios and clients’ houses. It was a great way for the juices to stay cool as natural enzymes in juices tend to expire faster in warmer temperatures.
6 flavours included (repeats on 2nd day):
- Goodness Greens
- Mint Lemonade
- Tropical Greens
- Turmeric Gold
- Beet Aid
- Almond Mylk
Why Juice Cleanse?
Any time you take a break from solid food, you also give a break to your digestive system, liver, and kidneys. With a juice cleanse, these organs are still required to work but much less and the nutrients are more readily absorbed.
Your digestive system will benefit from that break after working non-stop for years. Juicing gives a ‘cleaning’ boost to your digestive organs, allowing it to work more efficiently the way it’s suppose to without having to take care of annoying things like breaking down meat proteins.
Despite not being able to carry out a full juice cleanse (which is strictly drinking the juices only, supplemented by plain water) due to the extremely demanding weekend I had planned, I still wanted to share my experience over the 2 days with hopes that it would inspire some of you to try out a juice cleanse too!
Day 1: Saturday
The mini guide that supplements the pack recommends starting your day with a glass of warm water, either plain or with a squeeze of lemon. Since I have recently begun to experiment with oil pulling, I spent the first 20 minutes swishing sesame oil in my mouth while I showered and got ready to teach my first Saturday yoga class.
There is very little thinking required with the juices as Annabelle and her team had done all the hard work for you. Each bottle was numbered clearly so that the different types of juice would be consumed in the right order.
Each bottle is taken roughly at two-hour intervals, supplemented with plain water in between. By 12:30pm pm I am done with 3 of the 6 bottles – Goodness Greens, Mint Lemonade, Tropical Greens.
Having made last minute plans to attend a 2-day Ashtanga Workshop held at Upward Studio in Saujana, at 1pm I began practising LED Primary Series with the entire class.
Three rounds into my Sun Salutation A, stars were dancing in front of my eyes, a sign that my blood pressure was running low and I knew I would have to break this liquid diet once the workshop is over.
Though I never felt weak throughout the strong Ashtanga practice, I decided to take in my first solid food of the day at 3:30pm.
Surrounded by my other fellow yogis, both practitioners and teachers alike, they thought it was rather ambitious for me to attempt a juice cleanse over a weekend of yoga workshop. And I was served with a healthy dose of laughter as they watch me chow down my grilled vegetables Panini.
I had 3 more bottles to go and according to the guide, I should take the last bottle 2 hours before bedtime. I went through bottles #4 and #5 before sunset (Turmeric Gold & Burdock Beet) and bottle #6 at dinnertime around 7:30pm.
Before heading out for a wedding dinner, I took the final and last bottle of the day, Almond Mylk. Being a lover of anything cinnamon, this turns out to be my favorite of the 6 flavors.
Day 2: Sunday
I brought the first 4 bottles with me knowing it would be a mad dash between teaching classes, attending day 2 of the Ashtanga workshop and another run to teach a prenatal yoga class. Thanks to the cooler bag, the juices stayed cool long enough for me to drink it at its prescribed time.
It was only on the 11th bottle did I feel the need to resort to some solid food. Amazingly for the first half of the day, teaching two yoga classes and half of a Primary Series practice, I did not feel the need to eat.
At 5pm, I had my first solid meal followed by the last bottle of Almond Mylk at around 8pm.
A big part of a cleanse, be it juice cleanse or any other type of cleansing system is to tune into your own body’s need and to always respect what it is trying to tell you.
What does it taste like?
As I had been quite accustomed to the taste of green juices and other herbs taken in liquid form, all 6 juices were pretty easy to my taste buds.
1. Goodness Greens
The start of each day consisted of a bottle filled with organic kale, organic spinach, parsley, celery, lemon, apple and japanese cucumber. The lemon and apple takes off the edge of the greens in the juice though having had experience with stronger ‘all-green’ juices, this was actually very pleasant to drink.
2. Mint Lemonade
Serves as great pick-me-up by mid morning. Made from the juice of lemons, mint and agave nectar added as a slight sweetener. This was like a healthier, non-carbonated version of a great lemonade. Extremely easy to drink and I would dare to say palatable to everyone.
3. Tropical Greens
Yay! More greens. I am happy that they include a healthy proportion of greens in the whole program. This was made from organic kale, organic spinach, pineapple, apple, ginger and lemon. Because this was to be taken during lunch, I felt the ginger in the mixture works to satisfy that ‘lunchtime’ hunger pang and even felt like a full lunch on its own. The standout taste for this one is obviously the ginger, and since I love to make my own ginger tea, the strength of the ginger was exactly to my liking. Strong, bold and impossible to ignore.
4. Turmeric Gold
The turmeric root in this bottle brought me back to my childhood and a memory of when our stay-in house helper would pound away on a fresh turmeric root to extract its juice and after mixing it with a tiny amount of honey, convince me to drink the homemade ‘jamu’ as a natural medicine to my persistent bronchitis as a child. Turmeric, both in its fresh or powdered form is said to be particularly good in expelling phlegm. At the same time the active elements in turmeric is antibacterial, promotes wound healing as well as anti-inflammatory.
5. Beet Aid
Beetroot is just beginning to take a hold in my diet lately, sometimes taken as juice and sometimes grilled and added to salads. In this bottle there is carrot, beetroot, apple, lemon and (more) ginger (yay!) Beetroot gives a nice sweet earthy taste and is most distinct than the rest of the ingredients. A lovely taste actually, but don’t be alarmed if your pee turns slightly pink for the rest of the day. That’s just the pigment from beetroot making its way out.
6. Almond Mylk
The best out of the lot only because it has cinnamon in it, which surprisingly brings out the wonderful taste of the almond milk. My last experience with almond milk was maybe a year ago, taken from one of those ridiculously expensive imported almond milk range which ended up tasting like water more than anything else. So this bottle was really great in changing that perception I had on almond milk. Other ingredients included in this bottle is Himalayan crystal salt, agave nectar and alkaline water. The fact that this one is to be taken last is a great end to the day – it’s sort of like drinking a cup of warm creamy milk that signals your brain to wind down, relax and prepare for bedtime
In some ways I wish there is perpetual supply of La Juiceria juices within arms reach in my refrigerator to refresh after a class or just on the way out to the studio.
Drinking 6 bottles of juice in a day was a pleasant change to my daily food intake though given the meals I did take over the two days; it certainly does not qualify me to share the full ‘cleansing’ experience as yet.
However, with the amount of activity I did in the two days, I felt like I was not as tired as I should’ve been. I can also attest to the quality of the juices, the sustained satiated feeling (which I assume would be great for those trying to shed some excess weight) and a sense of ‘lightness’ that comes with an intake of fresh living enzymes.
If there were something that I could change, it would be receiving the juices in glass bottles instead of plastic bottles. I did however clarify this with the La Juiceria team and they gave a great explanation as to why they moved away from glass bottles (it did not come with a safety seal) towards plastic bottles (BPA free). With that said, I would still love to see them switch back to glass bottles, safety seals included with perhaps a recyclable incentive for re-orders.
A pack of 2-day juice cleanse consisting of 12 bottles of freshly cold pressed juices starts from RM 198. A 4-day, 6-day and 10-day options are also available. For more information head to La Juiceria’s website.
What’s your say on juice cleanses? Let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook page!