New juicing craze is no pulp fiction
Rebecca Eckler goes liquid
to purge the pleasure pounds
A day and a half into my “cleanse,” or “juicing” as it’s also called, I left a message for one of my best friends, yelling, “I am so hungry. I am going to come over and eat your baby!” I was only half kidding.
Cleansing is the new dieting. Everyone in Forest Hill and Yorkville seems to be in the middle of one. It’s as popular as leg warmers in the ’80s.
I’m on the Belmonte Raw. I was introduced to this by a trainer after I walked into his gym and complained about the happy pounds I had gained over the past few months and how I was feeling like crap about my body (hey, it’s swimsuit season). That night I was gulping down the first of many jars of horrid green liquid (actually it tastes better than it looks).
The next morning on my doorstep sat three bags full of juice jars waiting for me.
My best friend, who stops by for coffee every morning, took a look in my fridge and gasped. It is fully stocked with juice and not much else — carrot, apple, beet, lemon and ginger as well as some green drink with cucumber and parsley. At least there’s one with chocolate. That’s something.
And the master cleanse drink has lemon, agave and cayenne, apparently to alkalize my body. Whatever that means. It’s like I broke my jaw or have no teeth and have to consume everything through a straw.
Everything is free of all kinds of stuff such as gluten, dairy, sugar and animal parts. Whatever. If it means I’m dropping these pleasure pounds, I’ll chug it like a freshman at her first kegger.
The cleanse is supposed to make me feel great and my skin will look fabulous. That’s job number one. Apparently the weight loss is an added bonus. Sure, okay. Most women are more concerned about feeling great than losing weight. Ahem.
According to Belmonte, juicing is one of the best ways to rest your digestive system, hydrate and receive a high dose of vitamins and minerals without causing your body to work too hard. In addition, it’s supposed to kick-start your metabolism — key to the whole weight loss thing.
The instructions are simple: drink half a bottle of juice at one sitting and repeat six times a day. This in addition to drinking at least four litres of water a day and the liver detox tea. My absolute favourite line is “If you start to feel any detox symptoms, congratulations! These include a headache, sore muscles or joints.”
I’d like to add to that list dizzy spells and peeing about 35 times a day and wanting to eat your best friend’s baby or your own arm. Oh, and turning into a bitch was a big one!
The worst is the hunger. Drinking my dinner just isn’t working for me. Ask my editor, who actually called me a “monster.” I blame it on the cleanse.
My friends asked what I was doing, and my answer would be, “Oh, you know, I’m going to go drink my dinner now.” Or, “Just drinking my lunch.”
Some actually thought I was ridiculous for going on this cleanse, which they equated to just another fad diet just like the baby food one that Jennifer Aniston was on.
Cleansing, it seems, is very controversial. One of them said I needed an intervention. I was like, “What are you going to do? Handcuff me and force-feed me Swiss Chalet?” Which actually sounded really great at the time.
I was only on this cleanse for five days. Aside from going to the gym or a walk, I stayed at home.
Working was nearly impossible. Not only because I had to pee so often, but because my body is not used to all the liquid. The work I have to do will take about three hours longer than usual. You’d be surprised at how much time you take away from working when you’re visiting the washroom every three minutes and you can’t concentrate on anything but the food you’re not allowed.
And it’s embarrassing to have an important business meeting and only order hot water with lemon. By day three I started to see results, and all my concerns melted away like so many happy pounds on a humble scribe. My skin looked better; I’m no longer hungry all the time and I actually start to look forward to my liquid dinners. Okay, just a little. The dizzy spells even go away.
Now, even the thought of eating greasy fast food or white bread makes me feel guilty. The best part of the cleanse, I think, is that it gets you thinking about what you’re putting into your body. My lifelong friends, fried food and pizza, are losing their appeal.
I can’t say the cleanse was a joy. But it did work. I do, however, feel bad for Pizza Pizza and Swiss Chalet. They may have lost one of their best customers.