Serious Eats Goes on a Juice Cleanse: Day 3


Day 3! The final day of our juice adventure. And, well, it was an adventure. (Want to catch up on our reports? Here's Day 2, Day 1, and our pre-cleanse prep.)


When every mealtime (or "mealtime") is dependent on you having the correct bottle of the correct juice in hand, life gets complicated. I left the office at 5 p.m. yesterday and didn't get home until midnight; I thought I had everything under control, toting two juices with me, knowing that I had my green breakfast for the next day in the fridge at home.

But I'd forgotten that I'd had a "breakfast" meeting (Ed, brioche; Carey, tea) followed by another meeting and that I wouldn't get to the office, where my juices lived, until 1:30pm. If I had my green juice when I woke up, that'd mean 7 hours between juices. In real life, that wouldn't be an issue; I'm perfectly capable of holding out until lunch. But on Day 3 of juicing life, I seriously doubted my ability to make it through. I was already uptown and far from either home or office when a dizzy spell hit me; I grabbed onto a railing and thought Eat something. NOW.

I happened to be within a block of Whole Foods, where they sell Blueprint juices a la carte, and so I forked over six bucks for a replacement Juice #2. I felt a more than little silly doing it, but I was determined not to break the cleanse on Day 3. (That's stubbornness speaking, and nothing else.) I downed it. I felt better. But a little indignant.

I didn't feel hungry, and I rarely have over the course of the cleanse. But I do feel depleted. I felt woozy enough during my morning workout that I had to put down the weights. I've been spacey, with cold, shaking hands and a tendency to do things like call people the wrong name or accidentally wander into the mens' room instead of the womens' (sorry, gentlemen at Brasserie Cognac on Thursday!). And spacey enough to have not thought through my juice pattern for the next day.


"So do you feel cleansed yet?" People have been asking. A little yes, a little not really. Definitely feeling lighter on the feet, no painful caffeine withdrawals (thanks to the early phasing out of coffee last week), and I'm confident that good, virtuous de-toxing is happening somewhere in the juice belly.

But I do feel like I'm carrying around a juicy belly most of the day. It swishes a bit as I walk. I feel loopy-headed and not my strongest at certain points when standing up or trying to craft complete sentences in e-mails. Tonight I played Boggle with friends and made up a handful of gibberish words ("ugh, juice brain again, sorry guys")...though I can't guarantee that wouldn't have happened on a normal, non-cleanse day.

At other points in the day, I completely forget I'm on the cleanse. And when a tummy grumble does strike and I curb it with green tea, I think, wow, I should try doing that more. Today the biggest solid food temptation was Kenji's test batch of gazpacho for his Food Lab column. But it's so juice-esque...

I know what I'm having for my first lunch back tomorrow. That gazpacho. (The leftovers are sitting in the SEHQ fridge.) I'm craving that more than say, greasy cheeseburgers or sundaes. The idea of going raw or vegan never felt all that possible before but it actually does now.



The green juice is growing on me. I never thought I'd say that. And I'm feeling pretty light on my feet and energetic. I'm also down two pounds, though I'm highly doubtful that it will stay off. Though I'd love to say that this experience presses the reset button on my eating and drinking habits, that may not be completely true. It does encourage me to bring more vegetables and fruits to work, and maybe to stay off the caffeine a little, but there is still work to be done at SEHQ and at night, and that work involves tasting.

Today, I split the first green juice in half and walked to work (full of energy; I usually cheat and take the subway in the morning) and wasn't too hungry when it was time for juice 2. I breezed through the day on the next green juice and the lemonade, until about 4 p.m when I hit a wall...At that point, a headache appeared and I definitely let a typo or two by. (Sorry about that.) Only the beet juice brought me back from the land of space cadets.

Like Erin, I do think this cleanse made healthier eating seem more feasible—a vegan diet has never appealed to me before, but it definitely does now. I'm craving salads (and yeah, some of that gazpacho, too.)

Wondering how we felt once the whole thing was over? Here are our post-cleanse conclusions.
Day 2 report »
Day 1 report »
Pre-cleanse Prep »