I Almost Died: The Great Juice Detox Experiment


EARLIER  this month, Jen broke the news that she was kicking her candy habit (for a couple of days, at least) and had made the drastic decision to embark upon a juice cleanse. Four days of no solid food? Find out if she survives in the following play-by-play of her four days from hell.


Ahh, the last supper before my 72-hour juice fast. You better believe I was going to eat like a long and cold winter hibernation was forthcoming. The juice website instructs you to cut out alcohol, dairy, and animal products at least three days prior to the juice detox. Forgive my defiance, but the last time I checked I signed up for a three-day juice detox, not six days of pure hell. Instead of following their instructions, I foraged about three pounds of cheese naan, rice, and chicken korma that night and went to bed feeling like a Christmas ham.


10:57AM: The good news is I was so full from uninhibited cheese naan fat-assery that I didn’t get hungry till 10:57am, which is when I cracked open my first green smoothie. It tastes… green, but not in a particularly offensive way. It’s comprised of seasonal greens, apples, pears, bananas, and lemon. I’m not mature enough to mentally overcome the color, unfortunately. F*ck up #1 (or #2 if you count my inability to adequately prepare for three days prior to the cleanse) is that I did not drink a hot cup of water with lemon before my first smoothie. It’s literally the first item on the direction sheet. I drank lemon water after the smoothie instead. Same difference, right? Off to a promising start!

11:30AM: I am starving and angry. It has been 33 minutes since my first “meal.” I am supposed to space my drinks out two hours. One of 24 total products in and I already want to harm myself and others.

12:06PM: There are food pictures on Instagram. I don’t think I can do this.

12:11PM: I actually can’t do this. I take an Immunity booster. I do not anticipate what is coming for me and take a casual sip. I’m drinking fire (aka cayenne pepper). I cough uncontrollably in the middle of a conversation. I have dragon breath. I don’t want immunity. For the love of God, I want a banana!

12:57PM: I fear death. I am literally starving. I grab my third product and it’s another green bottle, except just juice, not a smoothie. This definitely means I’m going to drink it and still be starving. I can’t wait. This bottle of juice tastes like someone mowed a lawn, poured lawn grass into a juicer, added a stalk of celery, and poured it into a cup. I’m so hungry that the taste isn’t even a hindrance, despite my noted distaste for green liquids in general. I thought this would be a few days of super-fun berry smoothies. Wrong again. Research fail. I drink this faster than I should because what if I pass out or attack someone or find a stray carrot and eat it or die?

1:10PM: Still starving.

3:03PM: I drink my next smoothie made with turmeric, mango, lime juice, mint, and coconut water. All I taste is mint. I don’t know enough about healthy living to know what turmeric is but maybe I taste that too. I’m still starving, but I am also now depressed, with a headache. I want whatever Juliet Capulet got to knock her out in Romeo + Juliet, except not enough to actually die. I just want to sleep and be fed green stuff through an IV till it’s safe to eat fries again. I can wake up for fries.

3:43PM: I take a booster called the Supreme Soother, having no idea what purpose it serves, but hoping it soothes my appetite. I begin to wonder if you are supposed to feel like you’re starving to death, or if this is just a product of my habit of constantly ensuring I have enough food in reach that I never feel a pang of hunger. For the record, this Supreme Soother tastes like some sort of lemonade you might drink if you lived in Dante’s inferno. Dragon breath with a twist.

4:22PM: Debloater booster. Lovely. Need it. Tastes friendly, like cranberry water. I’m still fuming. Also, I just realized I drank this item out of order. I’m too hungry to read instructions, and apparently the order in which my items are consumed is of grave importance. I accept no responsibility for my actions until further noted.

5:00PM: I crack open a Vanilla smoothie made from soaked raw buckwheat groats, cinnamon, banana, raw coconut nectar, almond milk, and vanilla extract. At first I am thrilled. It tastes like heaven… and then the aftertaste comes in. I don’t know what the hell groats are but I blame them for this increasing foulness. It feels somewhat substantial, but the only other redeeming quality is that it is not green. I grow sadder with each sip.

7:06PM: I make a late nail appointment and cry to my manicurist about how poor and hungry I am. I’m drinking my second and final green smoothie of the day. This time I drink it slowly because I’m gagging with every sip. I study the texture till I figure out what it reminds me of.  It reminds me of the moss I used to dig up when I pulled fallen golf balls out of the pond on the golf course we lived on growing up. My dad got us a contraption that was pretty much a ten-foot pole with an ice cream scoop on the end, and we found great pleasure in collecting golf balls that haphazardly ended up in the pond. It takes me forever to get through this smoothie. I’m drinking room-temperature Swamp Man nectar and I want to die.

By the time I get into bed I still feel fat, but at least I have lost my appetite. This is a great thing because the only additional action I could take is to treat myself to hot lemon water. Hot lemon water. For dessert. It’s rude.

If I don’t lose 11 pounds by the time I wake up, I’m probably going to use the rest of my detox contents to paint a mural.

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