Cleanse Over!

As I mentioned in a previous blog post, Greg and I embarked on our bi-annual cleanse recently, using the Trader Joe’s Cleanse Kit. We’ve used this kit several times in the past, and have experienced good results with it. But first, a bit about the cleanse kit itself.

Trader Joe's Cleanse Kit, unleashed!
Trader Joe’s Cleanse Kit, unleashed!

We buy it at Trader Joe’s, obviously. The kit itself runs about $20, and is to be used over a period of 2 weeks. In the box there are three bottles of pills. Digestive, Liver and Fibre. They are to be taken according to the instructions provided, morning and night, with water. In addition to the pills, they recommend that you follow a clean diet for the entire two weeks.

Some people may already eat this way, but their recommendation is to avoid the following while on this cleanse program:

  • processed food
  • high sodium foods
  • sugar
  • red meat
  • alcohol
  • soy
  • dairy
  • potatoes & white rice (simple carbs)
  • caffeine

For me, the toughest part of this is avoiding the sugar and caffeine, particularly at first. The cravings fade, and you find other ways to appease your sweet tooth (fruit), but when you are up early and need a boost – boy, you sure miss a cup of coffee. Grouch-time.

While not the sole objective, we always lose weight on this cleanse. Greg’s been known to drop up to 12 – 15 pounds at the maximum, but at least 10 pounds. I lose usually up to 7 pounds in the two weeks. Admittedly, for the first week, that’s probably a lot of that is water weight, but after that, it seems to be a maintainable weight loss (assuming you keep eating healthy after the fact, and don’t start gorging on burgers and candy when you’re free of the cleanse’s clutches).

I had forgotten about last time we did the cleanse when we started this one. Last time, I started having… *ahem* digestive issues late into the second week. The cleanse kit says to discontinue the pills if you suffer from the symptoms I’d been experiencing, and so I did. It took a couple of days for my system to get back to normal. This time around, I got to about Day 11 of the 14 days before I had to stop. I maintained the “eating clean” part of the cleanse while Greg finished his pill regimen.

I also experienced something new this time around. After I stopped taking the pills and started introducing sugar and caffeine back into my diet, I felt quite ill. Stomach cramps, headaches, nausea, extreme fatigue. I’ve never run into that before, and I’m not sure if it was my body readjusting to things, undergoing the leftover detox, or if I just plain got sick, but whatever it was, it was not pleasant.

While we’ve had success with this cleanse kit (we’ve used it around 5 – 6 times over the last few years) and while I would probably recommend it to people who don’t have sensitive stomachs, I think we’ll probably start looking for another type of kit for future cleanses.  I like the idea of giving my body a break from some foods and stimulants, I’m pretty tired of feeling icky before I get to finish the kit. Why pay for 14 days if you only use 10 to 11, right?

So – do you have a cleanse program/kit/regimen that you recommend?

Don’t forget, I’m still running an ENERGYbits giveaway. Enter now, and enter often!