After several months of pizza, candy and 3-4 cups of coffee per day, I decided to try one of the cleanses I kept seeing all over Pinterest. I had never done a detox before so I did a little research. I’m not a fad diet kind of person, I just wanted a quick way to clean my slate and start eating more responsibly again (before I turn into a whale). After reviewing a bunch of ridiculously impossible ones, I settled on the popular Dr. Oz 3-Day Detox.
I chose this cleanse because you get 3 filling smoothies to drink per day plus another smoothie of your choice if you need a snack. There’s also a little caffeine involved each morning with the green tea so I wouldn’t have to quit cold turkey. The chart made it easy to shop for all the ingredients and put the smoothies together. I skipped the detox bath, so maybe this was my mistake, I’m not sure. But I thought, “it’s only three days, I can live through this.”
Well…I did live. But barely! Here’s why I wouldn’t recommend this cleanse to anyone:
1. It’s expensive. According to my research, this whole shebang should have only cost me around 45 bucks. What my research didn’t tell me was that the handy-dandy chart doesn’t include any of those “snack” smoothies. Oh you want a snack? That’ll be another 10 bucks per day. When all was said and done, I spent about 90 dollars on the cleanse and that doesn’t even include the baths! I could’ve eaten Lean Cuisine’s for a month with 90 dollars.
2. The smoothies are disgusting. The kind of disgusting that pops up in abandoned garage refrigerators or in expired canned goods from your grandmothers basement. I’m sure they are very filling but only if you can manage to drink them! The only smoothie I could drink was breakfast. The lunch smoothie (the dreaded green one) was so gross I could only choke down about a 16th of it the first day. I didn’t want to give up though, so I waited it out until dinner…only to find out dinner wasn’t any better! Dinner literally looks like soupy barf. I drank about half (with a straw) and then opted for water.
So there I was, one day into a 90 dollar three-day detox and I could only stomach breakfast. I was determined to find some tips and tricks to make it doable because I was not about to waste all that expensive food. I only found 1 tip…to not use any skin on the cucumber for the dreaded green lunch smoothie of death. On day two I drank maybe half of the modified pile of ground-up Grinch, but it was too late. I was already nauseous at the smell of celery and cucumbers (yes, they have a smell) and couldn’t take one more sip without barfing the only nutrients I had in me. I modified dinner and added more mango and less blueberries. I hate blueberries (and avocado, which is also in dinner) so I figured it was better to make it drinkable than have nothing. Somehow, I forced the entire thing down. I decided on day three I would make the breakfast shake as a snack (in addition to breakfast) just incase I had another run-in with the Grinch. As it turned out, I couldn’t get down ANY of lunch and only a quarter of dinner, but since it was already day three I stuck it out and sipped on breakfast to make it through. Long story short, I probably only drank about 1 1/2 smoothies per day because they were SO BAD. I literally wanted nothing to do with them or any other food for that matter.
3. Major withdrawal symptoms. On top of my starvation and borderline barfing, I went through major caffeine/sugar/nectar-of-life withdrawal. I normally drink about 2-3 cups of coffee per day during the week and one or two total on weekends. During grad school, my coffee addiction got a little out of control (another reason why I wanted to do the detox), but I didn’t want to give up coffee completely (spoken like a true addict). I assumed going from 3 or so cups a day to 1 cup of caffeinated green tea would be doable. WRONG. If I was just withdrawing from coffee, I probably would have been fine, but my body was apparently full of toxic waste! It didn’t go well.
On day two I could barely drive home from work. My head was pounding, I was very dizzy and sensitive to light and sound. I started to get a serious migraine…which made it easier not to cheat because I was rendered completely useless. I couldn’t watch TV or blog or talk to anyone. I didn’t want to take any headache meds because that sort of defeated the purpose of the detox. I was exhausted. One day I even went to bed at 9:30! For those of you who don’t know me, this never happens. I had become a zombie.
Alas, I made it out alive. The good news is I am three pounds lighter, back down to one or two coffees a day and I’m feeling much better. I can’t say it’s all because of Dr. Oz though. Personally, I think it’s because I starting eating real, healthy food again and stopped starving myself.
Have you ever done a detox or know of any good ones?