With wellness goals topping our priority lists during the beginning of the year, we see an increase in clients signing up for our cleanse programs. Designed to support your body's natural detoxification processes, a whole foods cleanse or detox is all about nourishing your body with nutrient dense foods while at the same time ridding your body from common allergens and inflammatory foods - i.e. gluten, dairy, and sugar. Before starting your cleanse the first step is to consider what your goals are for doing a detox. What’s your energy level? Do you feel radiant? Are there any bad eating habits you'd like to break?
But what is it REALLY LIKE on a detox? Today we're excited to share three different perspectives and experiences with our Provenance Detox cleanse program. Available as an omnivore or plant-based program for 5 or 7 days, our Provenance Detox is designed to heal your gut and balance your microbiome.
Just before the holidays, Elizabeth Goodman Artis, Editor in Chief at Shape Magazine, and a first-time client and non-profit professional, Melissa K., tried our 5 day Provenance Detox program. Then to kick off the new year, our own Executive Chef, Serafina Alonso, did the 7 day detox last week.
What health goals were you hoping to achieve when you decided to do the program?
Elizabeth: Weight loss, increased energy, better sleep.
Serafina: My year kicked off with a lingering cold and general feeling of being run down. The stress of the holidays! I consulted with our Wellness and Client Services team and they suggested I do the Provenance Detox to help get over my cold in the process.
Melissa: I hoped to see what a delicious, properly portioned, plant based and super healthy week of food would look like. I also wanted to challenge myself to see if I could handle my food cravings.
How did you feel during the first few days? How did you feel by the end of the detox?
Elizabeth: The first few days were hard. I was very hungry and got a bad headache. It was hard to exercise. But I felt good once it was done. Lighter, less bloated, slimmer, better mood.
Serafina: To be honest, I'm not a morning person and find myself usually rushing during my morning routine in the AM - aka I tend to skip breakfast! I was relieved to know that I had breakfast and a mid-morning snack already taken care of each day. I definitely noticed a difference throughout the week that when I got to work, I was more focused and plowed through my to-do list. I felt like I was able to be a better manager and that my head was clearer. I did find myself seriously thirsty by mid-week and was drinking a ton of water.
Melissa: I felt great the whole time! The food was delicious, not at all a compromise on flavor. I was full and didn't have any issues with cravings. The delivery of everything ready took a ton of pressure off me so I felt less stressed not having to worry about my food choices. At the end, I was just very sad it was the end.
What specific results did you achieve?
Elizabeth: I did lose a few pounds and felt like my appetite diminished. I craved sugar though throughout the week. I don't usually eat a lot of sugar but I tend to drink wine nightly so it's pretty common to crave sugar more once you give up alcohol. It's my main vice and the hardest part of going on the detox for me.
Serafina: The biggest improvement for me was my increased energy and focus, which made getting through the week so much easier.
Melissa: I learned that I can have a variety and some rich foods all within the course of the healthiest food plan. I felt well and at the end really didn't find myself craving other things.
Was there anything about the program or your results that surprised you?
Elizabeth: I was definitely surprised in a good way -- the food was terrific. There just wasn't quite enough of it for me, maybe because of my weight and muscle mass. I exercise a lot and found I needed another snack during the day especially since I dislike drinking meals and snacks - except for the morning smoothie, which I do regularly.
Serafina: I think everyone is addicted to something. My addiction is caffeine. On the detox I went down to just one cup a day. But I just felt like I had sustained energy without it. Anyone who knows me, knows that’s unheard of!
Melissa: I was sincerely surprised how much more full I felt in a good way while on the detox. It was like my body reacted to the food more than when I eat piles of less healthy foods.
What habits or products will you continue post-detox?
Elizabeth: All of them eventually. I am currently in the middle of stressful renovations and living in a temporary apartment. So I'm not in my normal circumstances. But overall it was a terrific program. I just think this time around I needed more food.
Serafina: I appreciated the mindfulness and clarity it brought during my daily routine. I’m more apt to grab something for breakfast before heading out the door now that I know how much better it makes me feel. Also when it comes to my coffee habit I find myself asking, do I need coffee or do I just need to eat or take a minute to rest and relax?
Melissa: I've been practicing portion control and have a better sense how to plan and pack a perfect day. Not just skipping or throwing food at my empty stomach.