By Jonathan Albert
Editor’s Note: Contributor Jonathan Albert is a professor of theatre at Union College in Schenectady, where he teaches acting and playwriting. Full disclosure; He is also the Owner of Putnam Den, a sponsor of Daily Planet Arthur. His contributions are not part of their sponsorship – it is just excellent writing! Jon received a complimentary 3-day Purify Juice Cleanse in order to write this story (value: $100) from Healthy Living Market and Café- also a sponsor.
Who doesn’t want a little purification in their lives? Healthy Living Market and Café is offering a 3 or 5 day juice cleanse called “Purify.” This new program being offered at Healthy Living is just what anyone needs to reboot after a long winter season and spring themselves into health and wellness as the weather gets warmer.
Here’s how it works: Choose the length of your program- 3 (retail: $100) or 5 days ($170). These juice blends are made fresh every day. Give Healthy Living a daily pick up time that works for you. Follow the program that comes with times to imbibe and supportive foods to supplement with your cleansing juices.
Juice cleanses give your digestive system a rest while cleansing and detoxifying your body with vitamins and minerals supporting self-healing. What does all that mean? It means nothing but juice and tea for the next three days (with supplemental food options if you so choose).
Over my three day cleanse, I made notes and kept a journal . Here’s a look at my experience.
Today starts a three-day juice cleanse with Healthy Living Market and Daily Planet Arthur . It is 10 am, I am already hungry. I am waiting for the intense coffee withdrawal/caffeine headache that will inevitably come but I’ll get to that in a bit. Let’s start with the positives, shall we?
My daily schedule looks like this:
8:30am – Green Tea or hot water with lemon
10:30 – Juice #1: Parsley, spinach, carrot, celery
12:30pm – Juice #2: Kombucha, beet, carrot, ginger
2:30 – Juice #3: Spinach, ginger, carrot
4:30 – Juice #4: Carrot, honeydew, beet, lemon, ginger
6:30 – Juice #5: Carrot, honeydew, lemon
8:30 – Juice #6: Kombucha, melon, spinach, ginger
Juice #1 – Awesome. The celery is so fresh. And I would never think to juice parsley but it adds a really nice flavor. Curiosity struck (with all the time not spent eating) and I am researching parsley. Vitamin K in parsley aids in bone health. It has vitamin C, an immune booster. It is also a source of beta-carotene. The best part for a runner and totally unknown to this particular runner- Parsley has been linked to relief from joint pain as it has anti-inflammatory properties. Good to know.
Surprised how much energy I have. I am already finding that I am breaking up my day into two hour chunks. Thirty minutes until next juice. Then two more hours and I get to drink again! I do the same thing with running. A marathon is only 7 miles three times over…… and after that there’s only 5.2 miles left.
Juice #2. Beets are delish! There is an alcohol-ish aftertaste to this juice but it also might be the looming withdrawal that will inevitably come- maybe later, maybe this weekend.
I thought my stomach and my energy level would be much more effected. My caffeine headache has not surfaced.
Hungry hungry hungry but….
The schedule of juices is very systematic. Hunger pangs come but are assuaged quickly with the first sip.
Juice 4. Ok. I’m hungry. But…
The mindful part of this is starting to kick in. I just made my kids a snack. Any other day I would be tossing goldfish or apples and peanut butter into my mouth as I sliced and scooped and put out their snack. I’m curious what my caloric intake of “kids” food is- finishing the last few bites of morning eggs or “tasting” the macaroni and cheese- and I won’t mention the cookies or the M&M bribery snacks that have a tendency to find their way into my mouth.
Another awareness. I would probably be on my third (if not fourth) cup of coffee. I left my house today at 8:40 and haven’t been back so that would mean a drive-through or a coffee stop somewhere.
To be completely honest- I have felt very little in the way of hunger. What I have felt is the habit and normalcy of mindless eating. In boredom I usually feel the pull toward food. I find myself with a bit of downtime during what would have normally been dinner. I answered some emails and caught up on some work I had been putting off. More than once I mindlessly walked over to the refrigerator and opened it. Not until I began looking for food did I recall my commitment to the cleanse. I closed the door and sat back down. Any other time I would have reached for mindless calories or empty intake.
Day 1 conclusion thoughts. I’m saving- calories, money and time.
As my wife took my children for dinner, I chose to get some work done instead. I am of course missing this time with my family but am dedicated to this cleanse and we all have a plan to meet up in an hour or two. I knew it would be hard to sit at one of my favorite restaurants and not partake.
Advice: It will be important when doing this cleanse to choose a few days where you have some space to take your own time, time to reflect, time to rest and take care of yourself. Today was a day of running around, work errands and taking care of the kid’s afterschool activities. When I do this again I might more carefully choose my three days.
Last juice of the day. Feeling good. Naturally getting tired at the end of the day- tired but not hungry.
Purifying with a juice cleanse for an active person can prove to be someone difficult. I did not want to miss my favorite yoga class at the Wilton Y so I did yoga at 6am. Late last night, on a whim, a friend of mine called and declared today a spring ski day at Whiteface. So I am currently headed up to Lake Placid, my morning green tea in my cup holder. Any other time this would be a hot coffee with a shot of espresso but not today. But again, I am surprised by my high level of energy.
My teeth feel fuzzy. What is that?
Maybe it’s a beautiful day. Maybe I am doing one of my favorite things- skiing. Maybe I got some really great news today and I am riding high. Maybe it’s the juice!! But the colors seem brighter today. I know I know it’s been 36 hours or so of this juice cleanse but it’s got me thinking. My day- everyday-starts with on unwavering consistency. Coffee. Caffeine and sugar- glucose fructose sucrose. So my morning goes from fog to “eines” and “oses” and there’s always the impeding fog once again when that lull hits around 3 or 4 o’clock.
Purifying thought of the day: No eines and oses in juice or water or raw vegetables.
I keep having the same thought over and over. I’m shocked and pleasantly surprised about the energy I have. Once again, this moment as I get back in the car for an hour and a half drive home would start with coffee and probably a sugary snack but instead I am on juice #3 and a bottle of water.
As I reflect… today would have been a day of “I went to yoga- I can have home-fries with breakfast.” Or “there’s no good food at the mountain- I’ll just get chicken fingers- make it a deluxe I like French fries.” Yes I am participating in this juice cleanse so my choices about “food” are being made for me, but in the moments where I would otherwise reach for food and make my choices, I was simply aware that in these moments we have just that- choices about what we put in our bodies.
Tonight is a little difficult. I was home by 4:30 and played with my two children, 5 and 3, for an hour before starting dinner. Smelling tamari chicken and not tasting it was near torture. When it came time to see if the macaroni was done I had to call in my 5 year old to be the “roni’s tester.” And if I am completely honest, my mood is slightly altered. I feel a little short-tempered but the simple awareness of it is allowing me to purposefully change my reactions to my kids. More truth – I probably overdid it a little today.
Sipping my last juice of the day as I lay down with my kids… And… I’m guessing my next entry will be at 8:30 tomorrow morning!
Sleep awareness: Without coffee or wine or disruptive foods my sleep was deep and restful. As prophesized I passed right out with my kids. I often don’t sleep well and as I work nights and wake up with my kids most days, often I sleep from 4am-7am and then have a full day. Along with the dietary restrictions of this cleanse I have allowed myself some latitude. I had some work to catch up on last night but chose the health of a good night’s sleep. Obviously I needed it.
The final leg and final thoughts. I’ll get busy later on the afternoon so this will probably be the last of the diary portion of this post. I am really happy to have this time and opportunity to cleanse. I highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in finding some awareness about food and drink and our habits of eating. I feel inspired to keep a food log and track energy levels. I feel inspired to do a more intense cleanse. The one things I would have added to this experience would have been a laxative agent to the cleanse. Smooth Move tea or a salt water cleanse would provide more of a detoxification effect. But other than that the juices were delicious and very well planned out. I am excited to research the beneficial effects of what I just did and what each other these juices provide. The convenience of picking up the juices and everything being laid out for me was simply wonderful. I would not have had time to do it otherwise.
Thank you to Healthy Living Market’s, Richie Snyder, Jim Nokes and Tayler Burnside. Thank you to Saratoga.com and Arthur Gonick. Go purify yourself people! It certainly couldn’t hurt to have a little bit more purity walking around.
OH! And the teeth fuzzy thing. The natural abrasion of eating food takes care of this usually. Additionally, the acidity of the juices can sometime effect the enamel on your teeth. In case you wanted to know…. Happy juicing!