It’s no secret that I love food and wine. However, at times, a body needs a break from both of these to reset. In my younger years I tried to do the Master Cleanse once a year for seven days and always hated the process but loved the after-effect. I had a flatter tummy, was usually about 5 to 7lbs lighter, felt like I could conquer the world, and keeping healthy habits was so easy. But, two years ago I did the Master Cleanse for the last time because that time, my body did not respond to it. I actually felt awful throughout, was terribly bloated, and I didn’t lose one pound. It just did not have the same effect as it did in previous years… but why? I concluded it was because of my age – things change as you get older and your body has different reactions to things.
Since then, I have seen naturopaths, undergone hormone testing, and discovered that I do not respond well to sugar (the Master Cleanse involves drinking a lemonade drink 6 to 12 times per day). Last year I was feeling a little hefty so my naturopath put me on a liver detox and had me follow a diet for four weeks that included no sugar, no processed food, no alcohol, no caffeine, no wheat, no overall carbs, no red meat, no dairy – pretty much lean protein and greens is all I was allowed to eat. I felt outstanding. But life was pretty boring, and it made reviewing restaurants a little more difficult. However, I did lose a healthy 10lbs and have managed to keep most of it off.
This year I’ve been dealing with other issues relating to stress and while I try to eat well, I find myself indulging a little too often and experiencing severe stomach pains. So I thought I should try to cleanse again – but not my usual Master Cleanse. I called my friend Mike Chalut, who is both an expert in cleansing and poutines, to see which one he prefers. He introduced me to OTG3, a juice cleanse that he uses regularly and loves. So two weeks ago I gave it a go…
The OTG3 cleanse follows a specific formula that is three days of pure juice cleansing while re-introducing clean eating for four days after. If you want to continue, you can follow this schedule for three weeks to do the 21-day cleanse, or you can just do the three-day juice only or seven-day formula. The juices you drink include a lemonade (same recipe as the master cleanse), an acai berry juice, a green drink and a super tasty cashew milk. I was going to do the seven-day and then Playa Cabana Hacienda decided to host their media opening on day four and foiled my plan. I did try to keep my diet clean but I can’t lie, I drank a couple mojitos… yep, booze is my weakness.
But what happened during the three days of cleansing? Well, it wasn’t very long, but I can tell you this much: day one was easy and day three was easy – day two I wanted to murder someone. Mostly because on day two all you drink is the lemonade and acai berry juice – no green, no cashew. Day three was easy because I knew it was my last day, however, I had a terrible reaction to the cashew milk and was unable to finish it. Overall during the three days, my stomach was bloated to the point of pain and I could barely move. I had read reviews saying this was an easy cleanse that gave you more energy, however, I was exhausted the entire time. All I wanted to do was sleep. This said, on day four my tummy was flatter and I lost 4lbs, probably mostly water as I’ve gained most of it back.
I have since received results of allergy tests I had done and discovered that I have food sensitivities to a lot of things, many of which I was drinking in my three day cleanse. Overall I shouldn’t be having too many fruits and I cannot handle nuts or dairy at all. This explains my severe reaction to the cashew milk… Would I do it again? Probably not. Not because it’s not a good cleanse, but what I’ve concluded is that everyone is different. Some probably react very well to the ingredients in the cleanse, however, others not so much.
In conclusion, I remain believing what I’ve always believed – there is no miracle cure for feeling like crap and gaining weight. Diets, cleanses, theories – there are many that work, but probably not all work for you. It’s about figuring out what does work for you and trying to maintain this as often as possible so you feel your best. I personally feel that only drinking juice for three days doesn’t do much for me, however when I cut alcohol and eat a clean green-heavy diet while keeping my food sensitivities in mind, I feel better, have more energy and no bloating, which at the end of the day, is exactly what I want.