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It’s that time again when weight loss is at the top of the resolution list. Your brain may be racked with questions like; What was that lemon water cleanse I saw on social media the other day? The Nekter juice cleanse is so expensive, does it even work? Are juice cleanses good for you? Maybe I should consider juice fasting? Maybe a quick 3 day cleanse will do the trick? 

Is there such thing as a Healthy Cleanse?

You may be thinking, “ Wow, that’s a loaded question.” Well, it’s meant to be because cleansing can be extremely beneficial and healthy or it can be detrimental to your body. I am here to share with you my experiences and research in hopes to educate you to treat your body with kindness and love as you contemplate cleansing out the crud. 

This isn’t about simply learning how to do a fast cleanse. When thinking about cleansing we need to consider gut bacteria and the gut microbiome not just how to do a fast cleanse. We’ve seen all the claims out there like “lose weight with water fast”, the problem is there are components of these claims that are helpful and factual, but they are not a stand-alone cure-all. We need to remember cleansing isn’t about losing weight to look good, it’s about cleaning out things our body does not need to hold onto so that we may reach optimal health while protecting our digestive health and our metabolism. Like anything else regarding our health, we are complex beings and cleaning is not a one size fits all. Keep in mind, I will be sharing with YOU what has worked for ME. You should always trust your own body and consult with your medical and holistic health team.

What in the heck is the Lemonade Diet?

Lemon Water Cleanse

Lemon Water Cleanse

Let me tell you about the lemonade diet also known as “The Master Cleanse.” Over ten years ago I lived in Lake Tahoe, California. This is when I found yoga, some of myself, and all things hippie, healthy, and alternative. The master cleanse was insanely popular at the time, so I figured why not give it a shot. Here is the thing with the master cleanse, you aren’t really getting anything of substance or nutritional value. The lemon, water, and cayenne pepper are cleansing while the sugar from the maple syrup gives you energy, but there is no substance (stay tuned for how to cleanse while also eating whole foods, later.) The recipe for the Master Cleanse beverage is:

  • 2 tablespoons (30 grams) fresh-squeezed lemon juice (about 1/2 a lemon)
  • 2 tablespoons (40 grams) pure maple syrup
  • 1/10 teaspoon (0.2 grams) cayenne pepper (or more to taste)
  • 8 to 12 ounces of purified or spring water

The recommended servings are 6-12 times a day. More information on the full scope of the cleanse can be found here.

So long story short, I did this cleanse, I lasted the full ten days, no problem. Yes, I did lose weight. Yes, I also gained it back. This cleanse did teach me discipline, but it also taught me deprivation and I felt that it pushed my body into a starvation mode that then caused it to hold on to fat even more after the cleanse. Again, this is simply my own experience. For a long time after I wanted nothing to do with lemonade or syrup, so I guess that was a bonus. I just recently started using cayenne pepper again and I love it! 

The Nekter Juice Cleanse – Does it Work?

Nekter Juice Cleanse

Nekter Juice Cleanse

I grew up in Orange County or The OC as you may have seen on TV, and I am sure you can imagine it being the land of yoga pants, Ugg boots, plastic surgery, and a green juice accessory. I am obviously all for health and any avenue you choose to get there, but I’m also about making health affordable and accessible by teaching tools that are sustainable to keep a healthy life after a cleanse possible. I have done the Nekter Juice Cleanse a handful of times, but it is very expensive and hard to sustain if you do not have a juicer yourself. Also, it is unclear if their juice is organic making it difficult to know if you are actually adding more toxins to your body. This is also a cleanse that allowed me to lose weight, but not to keep it off. I also, often had headaches while on this cleanse. This leads me to another point, possible side effects of cleansing, both negative and positive take a look here.

Why is our gut health even important?

Did you know that your gut or intestines is where a majority of our immune system is housed? There is an amazing book called The Second Brain which discusses the impact our gut health has on the rest of our body including our brain. Our gut is involved with how our body communicates with the brain. The brain communicating with our body seems pretty important, right? This is why when cleansing we need to be careful to protect our gut bacteria. Probiotics are a great source of protection for our gut and many cleanse’s do not factor this in. My favorite cleanse, that I try to do quarterly, is a three day cleanse packed with probiotics and whole foods.

What is the best way to cleanse and reboot in just three days?

My favorite three day cleanse is called the 3 day refresh, because it is a simple reset for your system. I usually do this cleanse after Thanksgiving, again for the New Year, and then before Summer. I always feel amazing afterward and it makes it easy for me to get back on track (if I am off) with my clean eating. The cleanse is plant-based including fiber, super-foods, and plant-based meals, as well as healthy fats and proteins. I love this cleanse because it is simple and can be tailored to folks with gluten and dairy allergies as well as folks with diabetes and other health ailments that are dependent on what we put in our body. It is complete and comes with super-foods, plant-based proteins, fiber, grocery lists, recipes and a guide to before and after cleansing.

Healthy Cleanse

Healthy Cleanse

I often feel like this is the part that gets overlooked. This is the part where most folks lose the weight and then gain it right back. This cleanse focuses on our water intake and packing our diet with dense whole nutrients making our bodies continue to crave to eat in this way because it feels so good (at least that has been my experience). I like to use this cleanse when I know I have not been eating clean or when I have reached a plateau in my weight loss.

If you feel like you are wanting more recipes, tips, and tricks to living your healthiest life, I have lots more tips where those came from. All of my meal plans include access to hundreds of recipes and short, easy, all levels workouts. If you have any specific recipes you would like or fitness program questions, always feel free to reach out to me.

Sarah S.

“Sarah Savino is my recommended Wellness and Nutrition Coach who resides in Colorado but has a community of clients she guides and manages nationally. She has her frequent retreats that her clients are encouraged but not required to attend and someone who knows first hand how it is to be overworked and overweight. She is a living truth that once within the right community and with the right guide, everything is possible. She can be reached thefitphilanthropist@gmail.com and facebook.com/sarah.savino IG- the_fit_philanthropist ”- Dr. Shakib, your Irvine Chiropractor