My juju cleanse experience
Many of you who follow me know that my appetite is an ever-growing monster. After all the pre-Christmas holiday eating, and my weekly adulation for Mercato Centrale as a merchant and a diner, I was feeling extremely BLAH. Sluggish, bloated and overall feeling like a stuffed turkey, I knew and felt that I needed an overhaul before I could possibly continue on to the Christmas celebrations.
During a food-filled visit at Mercato Centrale, I chanced upon this guy touting the JuJu Cleanse. More captivated by the name than anything else, it promised a digestive overhaul that would give me more energy, reduce bloat, cleared up skin and weight loss as a happy side effect. He didn't need to hard-sell, since I've always wanted to try a cleanse but was too lazy to make them myself, so I mustered up the courage to “commit to the cleanse.”
After calling the number from the flier, I settled for a three-day cleanse on Level 2. JuJu Cleanse can be taken for a day or three for best results. The levels go up as the amount of Green Bomb juices increase. My second level cleanse meant three Green Bomb bottles in my daily regimen of six juices. No food for three days... Good God, help me survive!
In preparation for my cleanse, I took a light dinner of meatball and mushroom congee from Eat Well Delicious Kitchen the night before. I should've eaten a salad but I needed one last hurrah to get me by three days of juicing up.
When my JuJu Cleanse was delivered the afternoon before I started, it came in a cute and handy insulated canvas carrying case perfect to lug around the juices to the office, or when out and about. Tres chic. The delivery arrives the afternoon before you're supposed to take it, to keep it fresh and potent.
Also provided is a reusable ice pack to keep the juices chilled and fresh while traveling. I keep my juices in the fridge and just bring what I need to the office, so this comes handy when on the go.
Each 500mL bottle of colorful juice is numbered so you know what order to take them.
The pack comes with complete instructions on the schedule of the juices, what to do when you receive your bottles, and what, exactly, is in the juices. This was very informative as I'm not that gullible to drink someone's random "kool-aid" without justification.
So what's in the juices? A whole lot of fruits, veggies, and vitamins and electrolytes. So goes my three-day journey in an attempt to shut my digestive engine and begin cleansing my system.
Day 1: I started the day off with some Fresh Mint tea that they provided. Steep the mint leaves in some hot water, and it begins the hydration process for my cleanse, as mint is great for easing digestion. This was more like warm minted water than tea, but there is enough mint to make up to four cups within the day, so I took this baggie along and made some more tea throughout the days.
JuJu Juice #1: Green Bomb; 0730
"This elixir of assorted green veggies loads you up with important nutrients and enzymes that our bodies desperately need to keep alive and well down to the cellular level." It tastes, well, green. I normally drink a veggie shake of lettuce, green peppers, celery, cucumber and spinach on a daily basis anyways, so I didn't find this hard to gulp down. I like that it was in juice form, but wished I had gotten some of the fiber the veggies would provide.
Since I had a 10am meeting on Day 1, I lugged around my JuJu juice carrier with me to Starbucks, and helped myself to some mint tea while my companion had some whipcreamlicious concoction. I was doing fine.
I had forgotten to take my second juice bottle so I grabbed and gulped during my ride to the office.
JuJu Juice #2: Red Giant; 1000
"Rich in alkaline elements that aid in cleansing and elimination, this potent potion of beets, pineapple, carrots and ginger is as healthy as it is delicious." I love beets, and this blood red concoction was one of my favorites. Slightly sweet from the beets and pineapple, the ginger makes it a bit more elixir-like with the spicy kick. Careful not to spill, the beet juice is a deadly stain monster.
So far so good on my first day of cleanse, until I got to the office and saw that my office window had the view of all the leftover Cebu goodie pasalubong hat from the Hotel Elizabeth Cebu grand opening. Are the JuJu gods trying to play a mean trick on me? Chicharon? Dried Mangoes? Otap?
I just drank more tea and faced sideways. LOL!
I took JuJu Juice #3 at about 1pm, another Green Bomb. "Since alkalinity is what we're after, this green juice is the way to go. You've heard the term 'life force'? This is all that and more!" Yes, a little more chanting from the leaflet and I can get through this quite easily.
I also supplemented my 3L of juice with a lot of fresh water, which I squeezed some lemon juice into to make it a bit more interesting. So far I was not feeling hunger pangs. Day 1 going great.
I also began tweeting my experience with the JuJu Cleanse and people got very curious. I realized it's important to have a support system who is there for you through the rough parts of the cleanse. Wait a minute, I'm only on juice 3 of 6 on Day 1?! I'm gonna need a lot of hand holding.
JuJu Juice #4: Alkazest; 1500
"This vitamin and anti-oxidant rich mix of grapefruit, pineapple and coconut juices is a refreshing mid-afternoon picker-upper. It is designed to replenish your electrolytes and boost your energy levels to help get you through the rest of the day."
I had to SMS the JuJu Nazi (that's what I call Kat, the JuJu lady) to ask which concoction this was because it didn't taste like grapefruit. She clarified that they used orange instead of grapefruit because delivery was substandard, hence the substitution. I loved the refreshing citrus juice that had the electrolytes from Himalayan salt, making it not too sweet, but very good for the afternoon to break up the lull. My office was wondering why I kept going to the toilet every 20 minutes.
Before I left for the office, I was about to gulp down JuJu Juice #5, another Green Bomb, at around 6:30 p.m. This was to prepare me for whatever challenge dinner was going to serve on my plate. At this point, I was getting a bit sick of the Green Bomb, so I put this bottle on hold till I got home.
And when I arrived home, I was greeted with the aromatic embrace of Cebu Lechon for dinner, amongst other things... fml. FML. F.M.L.
To save my sanity, I locked myself up in my room and drank my Green Bomb to a stupor instead. :(
JuJu Nazi SMS'd me around dinnertime to see how I was with the JuJu. I was waning and begged her for something to chew on since I was on lechon lockdown. She approved a bit of fruit that's not sugary, or some celery or cucumber. I lied and said I had one cherry. Well, there is just ONE cherry pit on the bowl of cherries, but once I got her approval, I downed the other 10. Hey! At least it's fruit. Gimme a break, I blog about food for a living. 11 cherries is a hunger strike already.
JuJu Juice #5: Salaba't Lemon
"This potent ginger tonic is an excellent expectorant providing relief for those with respiratory problems, it helps improve circulation, and stimulates your digestive system as well. This is a wonderful drink on ice and is also perfect warmed up as a pre-bedtime tea." True to the text, Salaba't Lemon is a strong gingery drink with lemon and cinnamon to further warm your insides while drinking. It's not a light drink, so I take the gulps slowly so it won't overwhelm me. The tonic is also good for your throat, which I benefited from since I felt the flu coming down on its early stage. Sickness, averted!
On Day 2, I began my day by testing my urine for alkalinity. I have elevated levels of uric acid, so I bought these PH strips to help me gauge my acidity and increase the alkalinity in my body. The top strip (yellow) was my first strip from Day 1, indicating that my pee was as toxically acidic as can be on the scale. My first strip on Day 2 was very dark blue, indicating a more alkaline level, which I hardly get when I test. I was ecstatic, add to the fact I had gone down 2.6 lbs on the scale. I know it's mostly water weight, but I was severely bloated anyways so this JuJu was working its juju on me.
On Day 2, I continued my six bottles of juices successfully, until dinner time came and I was craving for something more savory.
I sought approval from the JuJu Nazi to have some Pea Soup. PLEASE, I need some Pea Soup. And she obliged thinking it was just a puree of peas. I failed to divulge that this was Truffled Pea Puree with Mushroom Ravioli from Chelsea Market & Cafe. With some cream. But it is mostly pureed veggies, so I'm sure it was OK. I begged Mr. S to get me some on his way to ToT's Kitchen.
While I was enjoying my pea soup, the maids served Mr. S Cebu Lechon for dinner. FTW!? Didn't the household get to memo on my cleanse? I had some pea soup, while smelling the moist succulent pork beside me as Mr. S devoured it. I couldn't resist and had a slice of it. Promise, it was just a slice, or two...
By the end of Day 2, I had capped the day off with some Salaba't Lemon and by Day 3, I had lost a total of 5.1 lbs. Woot! I continued four of six JuJu juices for Day 3, but had to halt the other two because...
I hosted a Merry Mexican Fiesta complete with Tacos, Fajitas and Quesadillas!
Which also included some Russian Vodka. I digressed and defended this choice by saying I had it with cranberry juice, a diuretic. :)
And also had a piece of Cheesecake + Mango Bravo from Conti's... just a teeny slice.
So all in all, my three-day JuJu Cleanse experience was a semi-success, but had major hurdles because of the holiday season and its daily schedules of parties, plus The BIG Holiday Outlet Sale 2010, and the Christmas culinary celebrations. I loved that I had frequented the restroom, where my urine became more alkaline, meaning the juices were working its magic on my body. I noticed a big difference in the bloating section – my ToT tummy a little less jolly than usual. My skin also looked healthier during the week as well as my energy level up. Oh, and a total of 6.2 lbs lost. Nuff said.
I'm planning on JuJu-ing again after the New Year, without any cheating. As a resolution cleanse, JuJu Cleanse offers 10% off their days if you order before Jan 1. This time, I hope I never see lechon again.
Feeling the holiday humps and lumps? Time to JuJu with ToT!
Learn more about JuJu Cleanse here.